Nav: Home

Exploding waves from colliding dissipative pulses

July 17, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 17, 2018 -- The interaction of traveling waves in dissipative systems, physical systems driven by energy dissipation, can yield unexpected and sometimes chaotic results. These waves, known as dissipative pulses (DSs), are driving experimental studies in a variety of areas that involve matter and energy flows.

In the journal Chaos, from AIP Publishing, researchers studied collisions between three types of DSs to determine what happens when these traveling waves interact. "We intended to find out whether one could get spatially localized chaotic behavior by colliding pulses that are regular in space and time," said Orazio Descalzi, an author on the paper.

Descalzi and colleague Helmut Brand used two coupled cubic-quintic complex Ginzburg-Landian equations (CQCGLEs) to model collisions of stationary and oscillating DSs at different speeds. CQCGLEs are mathematical equations that other researchers have used for nearly three decades to study DSs, and they can be derived from reaction diffusion or hydrodynamic equations. "It is the simplest possible model for such phenomena," Descalzi said.

DSs have been observed in binary fluid convection in cars, optical systems like high-powered lasers and biological phenomena like cell movement. "Recently, the importance of localized dissipative structures for corrosion surfaces in electrochemistry has been demonstrated," Descalzi said.

Colliding pulses can interact in several ways, depending on factors like the pulse propagation speed. At lower speeds, pulses either interpenetrate or form bound states, Descalzi explained. At higher velocities, colliding DSs undergo partial annihilation or, under certain conditions, explode. "Explosions are irregular periods of rapid growth that are followed by sudden collapse to the initial profile," Descalzi said.

In their study, the researchers observed 10 different types of DS interactions including interpenetration, stationary bound states, oscillating bound states, and exploding DSs. The researchers were surprised to observe exploding DSs because the types of pulses colliding were not the type that typically explode. "We observed that regular pulses were transformed into explosive pulses," Descalzi said. Another unexpected result was the creation of an oscillating bound state with two frequencies from two DSs with one frequency colliding.

These results address the transition from regular DSs to localized chaotic behavior during collision, and report on previously undescribed complex behavior. The study's findings also point to possible future research avenues. Outside of nonlinear optics, where exploding DSs have been observed, studies have been limited to stationary DSs. The authors note that systems from nonlinear optics studies could be modified to experimentally study collisions of various DSs to test the predictions in their study.
The article, "Collisions of non-explosive dissipative solitons can induce explosions," is authored by Orazio Descalzi and Helmut Brand. The article will appear in Chaos July 17, 2018 (DOI: 10.1063/ 1.5023294). After that date, it can be accessed at


Chaos is devoted to increasing the understanding of nonlinear phenomena in all disciplines and describing their manifestations in a manner comprehensible to researchers from a broad spectrum of disciplines. See

American Institute of Physics

Related Behavior Articles:

I won't have what he's having: The brain and socially motivated behavior
Monkeys devalue rewards when they anticipate that another monkey will get them instead.
Unlocking animal behavior through motion
Using physics to study different types of animal motion, such as burrowing worms or flying flocks, can reveal how animals behave in different settings.
AI to help monitor behavior
Algorithms based on artificial intelligence do better at supporting educational and clinical decision-making, according to a new study.
Increasing opportunities for sustainable behavior
To mitigate climate change and safeguard ecosystems, we need to make drastic changes in our consumption and transport behaviors.
Predicting a protein's behavior from its appearance
Researchers at EPFL have developed a new way to predict a protein's interactions with other proteins and biomolecules, and its biochemical activity, merely by observing its surface.
Spirituality affects the behavior of mortgagers
According to Olga Miroshnichenko, a Sc.D in Economics, and a Professor at the Department of Economics and Finance, Tyumen State University, morals affect the thinking of mortgage payers and help them avoid past due payments.
Asking if behavior can be changed on climate crisis
One of the more complex problems facing social psychologists today is whether any intervention can move people to change their behavior about climate change and protecting the environment for the sake of future generations.
Is Instagram behavior motivated by a desire to belong?
Does a desire to belong and perceived social support drive a person's frequency of Instagram use?
A 3D view of climatic behavior at the third pole
Research across several areas of the 'Third Pole' -- the high-mountain region centered on the Tibetan Plateau -- shows a seasonal cycle in how near-surface temperature changes with elevation.
Witnessing uncivil behavior
When people witness poor customer service, a manager's intervention can help reduce hostility toward the company or brand, according to WSU research.
More Behavior News and Behavior Current Events

Trending Science News

Current Coronavirus (COVID-19) News

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2020.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Climate Mindset
In the past few months, human beings have come together to fight a global threat. This hour, TED speakers explore how our response can be the catalyst to fight another global crisis: climate change. Guests include political strategist Tom Rivett-Carnac, diplomat Christiana Figueres, climate justice activist Xiye Bastida, and writer, illustrator, and artist Oliver Jeffers.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#562 Superbug to Bedside
By now we're all good and scared about antibiotic resistance, one of the many things coming to get us all. But there's good news, sort of. News antibiotics are coming out! How do they get tested? What does that kind of a trial look like and how does it happen? Host Bethany Brookeshire talks with Matt McCarthy, author of "Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic", about the ins and outs of testing a new antibiotic in the hospital.
Now Playing: Radiolab

Speedy Beet
There are few musical moments more well-worn than the first four notes of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony. But in this short, we find out that Beethoven might have made a last-ditch effort to keep his music from ever feeling familiar, to keep pushing his listeners to a kind of psychological limit. Big thanks to our Brooklyn Philharmonic musicians: Deborah Buck and Suzy Perelman on violin, Arash Amini on cello, and Ah Ling Neu on viola. And check out The First Four Notes, Matthew Guerrieri's book on Beethoven's Fifth. Support Radiolab today at