Modeling Pattern Formation in Excitable Media: The Legacy of Norbert Wiener

  • A. S. Mikhailov
Part of the Biological and Medical Physics Series book series (BIOMEDICAL)


The pattern of rotating spiral waves is typical for excitable media. Such waves are observed in chemical reactions in aqueous solutions [521,522], in catalytic chemical reactions on metal surfaces [523], in liquid crystals [524], in optical systems [525], in populations of the social amoebae Dictyostelium discoideum [526,527], in the heart [528], in the retina [115], and even inside single biological cells [529]. Remarkably, the properties of spiral waves in all these diverse systems are similar. This suggests that the emergence and the dynamics of spiral waves are based on general mechanisms, not sensitive to the details of a particular system.


Excitable Medium Excitation Wave Spiral Wave Refractory State Wave Propagation Velocity 
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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

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  • A. S. Mikhailov

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