Dynamical "quorum sensing" in a complex electrochemical system

2019. 04. 25. 12:00
Gáspár Vilmos


Abrupt and gradual onset of synchronized oscillations due to dynamical quorum sensing in the single-cathode multi-anode nickel electrodissolution system

The nonlinear dynamics of oscillatory nickel electrodissolution\[Minus]hydrogen ion reduction system are explored in a multi-electrode anode - single cathode system. A mathematical analysis of the charge balance equations reveals that the coupling scheme is similar to dynamical quorum sensing, where the number of anode wires affect a parameter related to population density. In a parameter region where the large population exhibits stationary behavior, with sufficiently strong coupling (with small individual resistances attached to the anode wires), synchronized oscillations emerge abruptly with decreasing the number of anodes. Therefore, an 'inverse' dynamical quorum sensing takes place. With weak coupling the transition is gradual. The experiments are supported by numerical simulation of a kinetic model of the process. The results thus show that the description of nontrivial cathode-anode interactions in the form of dynamical quorum sensing provides an efficient way of analyzing the dynamical response of complex, interacting electrochemical reactions.

Michael J. Hankins, Vilmos Gáspár, and István Z. Kiss: Chaos, 29, 033114 (2019); doi: 10.1063/1.5087405

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