Chemical Waves in Oscillatory Media

  • Christian Vidal
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSB, volume 237)


Chemical waves are a striking phenomenon that occurs in some reacting systems evolving far from equilibrium. They consist in concentration differences which propagate through the medium at the expense of the chemical free energy content of the reactants. Thus, in contrast to the other kinds of wave (e.g. acoustic or electromagnetic, etc.), they do not carry energy. Owing to this, they exhibit several peculiar properties, such as for instance: conservation of amplitude and waveform while propagating in a dispersive medium, annihilation in head-on collisions, lack of ceflection and interference. These qualitative features make them so much distinguishable that one may wonder whether the word “wave” is still appropriate; another word, like “autowave” used in the russian literature, would emphasize how specific are these chemical propagation phenomena.


Malonic Acid Hydrodynamic Flow Travel Wave Front Chemical Wave Trigger Wave 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    R. Luther, Z. Elektrochem., 12:596 (1906)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    R. J. Field and M. Burger, in: “Oscillations and traveling waves in chemical systems”, Wiley, New York (1985)Google Scholar
  3. A. Pacault and C. Vidal, J. Chie. Phys., 79: 691 (1982)Google Scholar
  4. C. Vidal and P. Hanusse, Int. Rev. Phys. Chem., 5: 1 (1926)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 3.
    W. Y. Tam, W. Horsthemke, Z. Noszticius and H. L. Swinney, J. Chem. Phys, 88: 3395 (1988)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 4.
    N. Kopell, and L. N. Howard, Science, 180: 1171 (1973)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 5.
    A. Winfree, Science, 175: 634 (1972)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 6.
    P. Ortoleva and J. Ross, J. Chem. Phys., 58: 5673 (1973)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 7.
    P. S. Hagan, Adv. Appl. Math., 2: 400 (1981)MathSciNetMATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 8.
    J. M. Bodet, J. Ross and C. Vidal, J. Chem. Phys., 86: 4418 (1987)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 9.
    P. C. Fife, in: “Mathematical aspects of reacting and diffusing systems”, Springer-Verlag, Heidelberg (1979)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 10.
    P. M. Wood and J. Ross, J. Chem. Phys., 82:1924 (1985)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. I. Kuhnert and H. J. Krug, J. Phys. Chem., 91: 730 (1987)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 11.
    P. Mockel, Naturwiss., 64: 224 (1977)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 12.
    J. C. Micheau, M. Gimenez, P. Borckmans and G. Dewel, Nature, 305: 43 (1983)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 13.
    D. Avnir and M. Kagan, Nature, 307: 717 (1984)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 14.
    A. M. Zhabotinsky and A. N. Zaikin, J. Theor. Biol., 40: 45 (1973)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 15.
    K. Showalter, J. Chem. Phys., 73: 3735 (1980)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 16.
    M. Orban, J. Am. Chem. Soc., 102: 4311 (1980)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 17.
    H. Miike, S. C. Muller and B. Hess, Chem. Phys. Lett., 144: 515 (1988)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 18.
    J. Rodriguez and C. Vidal, J. Phys. Chem., in pressGoogle Scholar
  22. 19.
    A. Pagola, J. Ross and C. Vidal, J. Phys. Chem, 92: 163 (1988)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 20.
    P. Keener and J. Tyson, Physica D, 21: 307 (1986)MathSciNetADSMATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 21.
    S. C. Muller, T. Plesser and B. Hess, Physica D, 24:71 and 87 (1987)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 22.
    P. S. Hagan, SIAM J. Appl. Math., 42: 762 (1982)MathSciNetMATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 23.
    P. C. Fife, in: “Non-epuilibrium dynamics in chemical systems”, C. Vidal and A. Pacault eds, Springer-Verlag, Heidelberg, p. 76 (1984)Google Scholar
  27. E. Meron and P. Pelce, Phys. Rev. Lett., 60: 1880 (1988)MathSciNetADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 24.
    C. Vidal, A. Pagola, J. M. Bodet, P. Hanusse and E. Bastardie, J. Phys., 47: 1999 (1986)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 25.
    D. Walgraef, G. Dewel and P. Borckmans, J. Chem. Phys., 78: 3043 (1983)ADSCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 26.
    A. Pagola and C. Vidal, J. Phys. Chem., in pressGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Christian Vidal
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre de Recherche Paul Pascal (CNRS)Université de Bordeaux ITalence, CédexFrance

Personalised recommendations