The European Physical Journal Special Topics

, Volume 223, Issue 13, pp 2759–2773 | Cite as

How do small differences in nonidentical pulse-coupled oscillators induce great changes in their synchronous behavior?

  • G. M. Ramírez Ávila
  • J. Kurths
  • J. L. Guisset
  • J. L. Deneubourg
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Advanced Computational and Experimental Techniques in Nolinear Dynamics. Guest Editors: Elbert E.N. Macau and Carlos L. Pando Lambruschini (Eds.)


We studied synchronization and clustering in two types of pulse-coupled oscillators, namely, integrate-and-fire and light-controlled oscillators. We considered for the analysis globally coupled oscillators, either by a mean-field type coupling or a distance-dependent one. Using statistically diverse measures such as the transient, probability of total synchronization, fraction of clustered oscillators, mean size, and mean number of clusters, we describe clustering and synchronous behavior for populations of nonidentical oscillators and perform a comparative analysis of the behavioral differences and similitudes among these types of oscillators. Considering a mean-field approach, we found high probability of total synchronization in all cases for integrate-and-fire oscillators; on the other hand, in a more realistic situation, for light-controlled oscillators, i.e., when oscillators do not fire instantaneously, the probability of total synchronization decreases drastically for small differences among the oscillators and subsequently, for larger differences, it slightly increases. When the coupling strength depends on the distance, the probability of total synchronization plummets dramatically with the number of oscillators especially in the case of integrate-and-fire oscillators. The latter constitutes an interesting result because it indicates that in realistic situations, the probability of total synchronization is not very high for a population of pulse-coupled oscillators; this entails that its utilization as a paradigmatic model of total synchronization does not suit well, especially when the coupling depends on the distance. This article is dedicated to our good friend and colleague Hilda Cerdeira as a tribute to the scientific work developed over her career.


Coupling Strength European Physical Journal Special Topic Period Criterion Synchronization Time Cluster Feature 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© EDP Sciences and Springer 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. M. Ramírez Ávila
    • 1
  • J. Kurths
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
  • J. L. Guisset
    • 5
  • J. L. Deneubourg
    • 5
  1. 1.Instituto de Investigaciones Físicas, Casilla 8635Universidad Mayor de San AndrésLa PazBolivia
  2. 2.Institut für PhysikHumboldt-Universität zu BerlinBerlinGermany
  3. 3.Potsdam Institut für KlimafolgenforschungPotsdamGermany
  4. 4.Institute for Complex Systems and Mathematical BiologyUniversity of AberdeenAberdeenUK
  5. 5.Interdisciplinary Center for Nonlinear Phenomena and Complex Systems & Unité d’Ecologie SocialeUniversité Libre de BruxellesBrusselsBelgium

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