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St. Petersburg Paradox and Failure Probability

Abstract
The St. Petersburg paradox provides a simple paradigm for systems that show sensitivity to rare events. Here, we demonstrate a physical realization of this paradox using tensile fracture, experimentally verifying for six decades of spatial and temporal data and two different materials that the fracture force depends logarithmically on the length of the fiber. The St. Petersburg model may be useful in a variety fields where failure and reliability are critical.
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2020-01-01
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