Brandeis University


University of Southern Mississippi

"This book belongs within easy reach of any person either working in the area or in daily contact with people, especially students, who nowadays hear of these topics from many sources and who wish to learn more about them."

Journal of Chemical Education

"This is the not the first book written on the subject but it may be the most readable."

Journal of the American Chemical Society

Just a few decades ago, chemical oscillations were thought to be exotic reactions of only theoretical interest. Now known to govern an array of physical and biological processes, including the regulation of the heart, these oscillations are being studied by a diverse group across the sciences. This book is the first introduction to nonlinear chemical dynamics written specifically for chemists. It covers oscillating reactions, chaos, and chemical pattern formation, and includes numerous practical suggestions on reactor design, data analysis, and computer simulations. Assuming only an undergraduate knowledge of chemistry, the book is an ideal starting point for research in the field. The book begins with a brief history of nonlinear chemical dynamics and a review of the basic mathematics and chemistry. The authors then provide an extensive overview of nonlinear dynamics, starting with the flow reactor and moving on to a detailed discussion of chemical oscillators. Throughout the authors emphasize the chemical mechanistic basis for self-organization. The overview is followed by a series of chapters on more advanced topics, including complex oscillations, biological systems, polymers, interactions between fields and waves, and Turing patterns. Underscoring the hands-on nature of the material, the book concludes with a series of classroom-tested demonstrations and experiments appropriate for an undergraduate laboratory.

480 pp., 39 halftones, 206 linecuts, 6-1/8 x 9-1/4

$70.00w, 0-19-509670-3

October 1998


April, 2000 Journal of Chemical Education

November, 1999 Physics Today

2000, Journal of the American Chemical Society

2000, SIAM Review



Part I. Overview

1. Introduction - A Bit of History 3

2. Fundamentals 17

3. Apparatus 47

4. Synthesis of Chemical Oscillations 62

5. Analysis of Chemical Oscillations 83

6. Waves and Patterns 109

7. Computational Tools 139

Part II. Special Topics

8. Complex Oscillations and Chaos 163

9. Transport and External Field Effects 191

10. Delays and Differential Delay Equations 210

11. Polymer Systems 231

12. Coupled Oscillators 255

13. Biological Oscillators 282

14. Turing Patterns 299

15. Stirring and Mixing Effects 324

Appendix 1


A1.1 The Briggs-Rauscher Reaction  346

A1.2 The Belousov-Zhabotinsky Reaction 347

A1.3 BZ Waves 348

A1.4 A Propagating pH front 349

Appendix 2

Experiments for the Undergraduate Lab

A2.1 Frontal Polymerization 351

A2.2 Oscillations in the Homogeneous Belousov-Zhabotinsky Reaction 353

A2.3 Unstirred BZ System 356

"Measuring Rate Constants with a Ruler"

References 360

About the Authors:

Irving R. Epstein is the Helena Rubenstein Professor of Chemistry and Provost at Brandeis Univeristy.

John A. Pojman is a professor of Chemistry & Biochemistry at the University of Southern Mississippi.

For information on ordering


 Return to the Pojman Homepage