Simulation of spatial dependence structures

Simulation of spatial dependence structures
Rosa Marı́a Crujeiras1 and Rubén Fernández-Casal2
Department of Statistics and OR. University of Santiago de Compostela.
Department of Statistics and OR. University of Vigo.
Summary. We propose in this work a method for simulating spatial dependence
structures. This method is a modification of the Fourier Integral Method proposed in
[PC93]. The algorithm is highly efficient due to the use of the FFT. In the simulation
study, we show that the Modified Fourier Integral Method effectively reproduces the
variability of the process.
Key words: spectral density, periodogram, Fourier Integral Method.
1 Introduction
In most applied works in spatial statistics, one can not avoid the use of simulation
techniques for spatially dependent data. Gaussian process generation, with a certain covariance structure, can be done using the Cholesky factorization (see [CD99],
for instance) of the variance-covariance matrix, but such a factorization may be
computationally expensive. The most well-known method for generating a multidimensional stationary process, avoiding the factorization of the variance-covariance
matrix, is the Turning-Bands method (see [CD99], pp.472-477). The success of this
method relies on the fact that it simplifies the multidimensional simulations to the
one-dimensional case. The key-point in this type of procedures is the simulation of
the dependence structure. [MB92] considers the problem of generating a non-causal
Gaussian-Markov random field defined on finite lattices. The characterization of the
field structure is not given in terms of its covariance matrix, but on its potential
or precision matrix. A recursive structure is developed for this type of processes,
consisting of two equivalent one-sided representations obtained by the Cholesky
factorization of the potential matrix. Also based on the potential matrix, [Rue01]
proposes an algorithm which takes advantages of the Markov properties of the field,
applying numerical techniques for sparse matrices. For regularly-spaced observations with Gaussian correlations, [Mar00] obtains the theoretical autoregressive and
moving-average representations. This fact allows for the exact simulation of a set
of observations, given a certain vector of innovations, being preferable the movingaverage form. An alternative to these techniques is spectral simulation, which has
been widely use in engineering. A method for simulating multivariate and multidimensional random processes, with a specified spectral density is proposed in [Shi71]
Rosa Marı́a Crujeiras and Rubén Fernández-Casal
. In [PC93], the authors present a method for simulating stationary random fields
with an imposed model of covariance function.
Spectral techniques have been proved to be a powerful tool in time series context,
since periodogram values at Fourier frequencies can be considered as asymptotically
independent. The correspondence between spectral density and covariance function
allows the translation of the study of the dependence structure into the study of
the behaviour of the spectral density, usually estimated by the periodogram, or a
smoothed version. The study of distributional properties of this estimate with the
consequent implementation of different statistical and/or computational techniques
require the generation of periodogram values. In hypothesis testing context, when
the test statistic is based in the periodogram, generation of periodogram values is
needed for approximating the test statistic distribution by Monte Carlo methods.
In this work, we propose a modification of the Fourier Integral Method for the simulation spatial processes. This method efficiently reproduces the periodogram of a
spatial process, as it is shown in the simulation study. In Section 2, we give some
background on spectral techniques for spatial data. In Section 3 we present the
modified version of the Fourier Integral Method. Results from a simulation study
are given in Section 4.
2 Background. Spatial spectral techniques.
Let Z denote a zero-mean stationary spatial process, observed on a region D ∈ R2 .
Any stationary process admits a representation in terms of a Fourier-Stieltjes integral
and the following relation is obtained:
f (λ) =
where f is the spectral density of the process and C is the covariance function. From
equation (1), distributional characteristics of the process can be both interpreted
from the spatial or from the spectral domain. Consider the process Z is observed
on a regular grid D = {0, . . . , n1 − 1} × {0, . . . , n2 − 1} and denote by N = n1 n2
the number of observations. The classical estimator for the spectral density is the
spatial periodogram:
Pn1 −1 Pn2 −1
s1 =0
s2 =0
I(λk ) = (2π)−2 N −1 T
Z(s)e−iλ k s .
Remark. When the process Z is defined over a continuum, the spectrum relies on
λ ∈ R2 . For a discrete process, the spectrum is bounded in [−π, π] × [−π, π]. In
practice, we may aim to recover the spectrum of a continuous process from a discrete realization. Despite the frequency band is the whole space R2 , the frequency
behaviour we can recover is restricted to [−π, π] × [−π, π]. This effect is known as
Spatial periodogram properties have been studied in [Ste95] and [Fue02]. The periodogram is asymptotically unbiased, although it is not consistent. It is usually
computed at the set of bidimensional Fourier frequencies λTk = (λk1 , λk2 ), where
λkj = nj j , and kj = 0, ±1, . . . , ±[(nj − 1)/2] for j = 1, 2. The spatial periodogram
(2) can be written in terms of the sample autocovariances, (u) as:
Simulation of spatial dependence structures
I(λk ) = (2π)−2
(u)e−iλ k u .
In order to recover the complete set of sample covariances {(u), u = (u1 , u2 )} by
the inversion formula from the periodogram it should be computed at a larger set of
for kj = 0, ±1, . . . , ±(nj −1) and
frequencies, given by λTk = (λk1 , λk2 ), λkj = 2nj −1
j = 1, 2. A more attractive expression for the spatial periodogram is obtained if the
process Z can be represented as a bidimensional moving-average process, where the
innovation variables ε come from a white noise process. In this case, the periodogram
can be written as:
I(λk ) = f (λk )Vk + Rn (λk )
where each λk denotes a Fourier frequency and Vk ’s are independent identically
distributed random variables with standard exponential distribution and Rn (λk ) is
uniformly bounded. Then, applying logarithms in (4), we have
Yk = m(λk ) + zk + rk
where m = log f denotes the log-spectral density and the variables zk are independently and identically Gumbel(0, 1) distributed.
3 Spectral simulation.
3.1 Parametric model.
Sometimes one does not need to reproduce a complete set of data, but only its signal.
Therefore, in some cases it would be enough with the use of a resampling technique
for reproducing periodogram (or log-periodogram) values. In [FW04], the authors
propose a method for generating a random sample from the log-periodogram of a
certain spatial process, using regression model (5), ignoring the residual term rk .
The log-periodogram values at the Fourier frequencies λk are obtained by adding
the value of a parametric estimator mθ̂ of the log-spectral density evaluated in the
frequency plus an error term, given by a random realizarion of a Gumbel(0, 1) distribution. When ignoring the residual term rk , we are removing a source of variability
in the periodogram scale, given by Rn (λk ), and part of the uncertainty given by
the Vk variables. The method we propose tries to compensate this loss of variability.
First, we work in the periodogram scale (non in the log-scale). We capture all the
variability given by the exponential variables and we approximate the contribution
of the Rn (λk ) term.
3.2 The Fourier Integral Method.
The Fourier Integral Method (proposed in [PC93]) generates realizations of a
stationary random field. Due to the periodicity of the discrete Fourier transform, if we want to generate a sample on the grid D, data must be generated
{0, . . . , m1 − 1} × {0, . . . , m2 − 1}, with mi ≥ 2ni − 1 i = 1, 2 (see [CD99]). Given
a certain covariance structure (or a variogram model), the Fourier Integral Method
for spatial data generation is as follows:
Rosa Marı́a Crujeiras and Rubén Fernández-Casal
1. Use the variogram or covariogram model to compute discrete covariances C(u),
for u = (u1 , u2 ) with uj = 0, . . . , mj − 1, j = 1, 2.
2. Compute the discrete Fourier transform of {C(u)} and obtain an approximation
, k2 ), with
of the discrete density spectrum, f∆ (λk ) such that λk = 2π( m
1 m2
kj = 0, . . . , mj − 1, j = 1, 2. The square root of the discrete density spectrum
will give us the amplitude.
3. Draw random phases φ(λk ), from a uniform distribution in [0, 2π]. To obtain
real values, phases must be symmetric:
φ(λk ) = −φ(λ−k ).
4. Build the Fourier coefficients as { f∆ (λk )e−iφ(λ k ) }, for k 6= (0, 0) and k 6=
(m1 /2, m2 /2) = m/2 and f∆ (λ0 ) cos(λ0 ), f∆ (λm/2 ) cos(λm/2 ).
5. Perform the FFT on the Fourier coefficients to get a realization of the random
field Z(u).
6. Take only the n1 × n2 first observations. If the main goal is to simulate the
periodogram, compute the periodogram for this data.
The only source of variability comes from the subsampling step. From the simulation
study, it is clear that this procedure does not reproduce the variability of the process.
Besides, in [PC93], the authors do not take into account the discrete or continuous
character of the process and in the original algorithm, there is no distinction between
the spectral density and its aliased version f∆ .
3.3 The Modified Fourier Integral Method.
We propose a modification of the Fourier Integral Method, introduced above, considering an additional source of variability in the frequency domain. Although the
covariance structure and the spectral density form a Fourier Transform pair, and
therefore, one is determined by the other, it should be noted that once a covariance
matrix for N observed data is computed, its Discrete Fourier Transform gives the
values of an approximation of the spectral density, even in the discrete parameter
case. To avoid this approximation error, we start our algorithm from the spectral
density. We introduce in the amplitudes of the Fourier coefficients an exponential
variable, as it is suggested in the representation of the periodogram (4). The Modified
Fourier Integral Method is as follows:
1. Draw random phases φ(λk ), from a uniform distribution in [0, 2π]. To obtain
real values, phases must be symmetric:
p φ(λ k ) = −φ(λ −k ).
2. Build
the Fourier coefficients as { f∆ (λk )Vk e−iφ(λ k ) }, for k 6= (0, 0), and
f∆ (λ0 )V0 cos(λ0 ) where the variables {Vk } are independent and randomly
sampled from a standard exponential distribution.
3. Perform the FFT on the Fourier coefficients to get a realization of the random
field Z(u) and compute the periodogram for this data, if that is the case.
Remark. For lattice processes, the spectral density f is periodic. In this case, f∆
is exactly f , but restricted to [−π, π] × [−π, π]. If we consider a continuous process,
f∆ is an aliased version of the theoretical spectral density.
4 Simulation Results.
We consider a particular case of linear-by-linear process: the doubly-geometric process (see [Mar79]). 10000 generations of the process are drawn in a 20 × 20 and a
Simulation of spatial dependence structures
50 × 50 regular grids. We compare the results obtained with those produced by a
methods for generating linear-by-linear processes (see [AAB96]), the Fourier Integral Method, the Modified Fourier Integral Method proposed in this work and the
parametric bootstrap in [FW04]. Mean, Mean Square and Whittle Error surfaces are
computed in order to compare the performance of the periodogram obtained by the
different simulation procedures. For B simulated samples, Mean, Mean Square and
Whittle Errors of the log-periodogram as an estimate for the log-spectral density
are given by (6), (7) and (8), respectively.
M E(mθ (λk ), Yk ) =
M SE(mθ (λk ), Yk ) =
W E(mθ , Yk ) =
i=1 (mθ (λ k )
− Yki );
i=1 (mθ (λ k )
i=1 (Yk
− Yki )2 ,
− mθ (λk ) − e
Yki −mθ (λ k )
Table 1. Summary statistics.
Mean Error
20 × 20
50 × 50
Mean Square Error
20 × 20
50 × 50
Whittle Error
20 × 20
50 × 50
For a 20×20 regular grid simulation, in terms of Mean Error (Figure 1), both Fourier
Integral Method and the Modified version show a good behaviour, although Modified Fourier Integral Method is slightly better. The log-periodogram values of the
parametric bootstrap proposed do not capture all the variability. This behaviour is
shown also in Figure 2, in Mean Square Error terms. For Whittle’s Error (Figure 3),
parametric bootstrap exhibits a good behaviour. This fact is not surprising because
Rosa Marı́a Crujeiras and Rubén Fernández-Casal
Par. Bootstrap
Modified Fourier
Figure 1. Mean Error.
Par. Bootstrap
Modified Fourier
Figure 2. Mean Square Error.
the log-periodogram values are computed from a regression model which also providas the log-likelihood. Results obtained from data generated by the Fourier Integral
Method do no capture all the variability in terms of the log-periodogram. The Modified Fourier Integral Method still shows a good behaviour, similar to the parametric
bootstrap. Table 1 shows summary statistics (mean, median and standard deviation)
for a 20 × 20 and a 50 × 50 regular grid simulation. These statistics are obtained
from 1000 simulations. Parametric bootstrap simulations are not affected by the
sample size. Although results from FIM are slightly better for the 50 × 50 sample,
the performance of this method is not as good as the MFIM version. In terms of
Simulation of spatial dependence structures
Par. Bootstrap
Modified Fourier
Figure 3. Whittle’s Error.
computational time, in a Pentium IV (2.6 Ghz), for the simulation a 50 × 50 regular
grid using Cholesky factorization, it takes 28.19 seconds, approximately. The same
simulation using FIM takes 0.01 seconds. We have presented results for the lattice
data case (discrete parameter case) but the consideration of the aliased spectral
density allows for the generation of geostatistical processes. In this case, the FIM
would be preferable to the other mechanisms, due to its lower computation cost.
5 Acknowledgments.
The authors want to thank the referees for their helpful comments. This work has
been partially supported by the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science, grant
BES-2003-0581 and project MTM2005-00820.
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