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Experiments on Spatio-Temporal Chaos Guenter Ahlers

Summary: Experiments on Spatio-Temporal Chaos
Guenter Ahlers
Department of Physics and Center for Nonlinear Science, University of
California, Santa Barbara CA 93106, USA
Under non-equilibrium conditions, a spatially-extended system will often undergo
a transition from a uniform state to a state with spatial variation (a "pattern").
Patterns are of interest because their formation is associated with nonlinear effects
which can lead to qualitatively new phenomena that do not occur in linear systems.
Among the most fascinating of these phenomena is spatio-temporal chaos (STC).
This paper briefly reviews some of the experimental observations of and measure-
ments on STC.
1 Introduction
So far as I can tell, the quantitative study of chaos in spatially extended systems
(STC) had its origin in experiments on Rayleigh-B´enard convection (RBC) at
cryogenic temperatures. [1­4] This early work was followed soon by quanti-
tative measurements [5,6] on temporal chaos in systems without significant
spatial extent which, for some time, attracted far more attention because they
made contact with concurrent theoretical developments [7]; this interaction
between theory and experiment revived the field of dynamical systems as a


Source: Ahlers, Guenter - Department of Physics, University of California at Santa Barbara


Collections: Physics