Get in synch -- or be enslaved by it

Oct 19, 2010

We talk about synchronization a lot. We synch up; synch our computers; and get in synch. And synchronous behavior underlies many natural systems, events and phenomena.

Understanding conditions that cause oscillators -- which are common electronic components that produce a repetitive electronic signal -- to get in synch or fall out of synch, is necessary to achieve the optimal functioning of oscillator networks that underlie many technologies. The transition from to desynchronization is the subject of a new investigation by a team of Japanese scientists. Their report appears in the journal , which is published by the American Institute of Physics.

"On one hand, synchronization is necessary for communication and . On the other hand, synchronization can blow violently out of proportion and enslave everything it is in contact with," explains Ralf Toenjes of Ochanomizu University. He and his colleagues show that adding only a few links to a network can have such a strong effect that even this modest addition can mark the difference between random noise and coherent synchronization. They devised a method of control that enables them to balance the system at states that are actually unstable and usually not observed.

Explore further: Physicist's Nobel Prize up for auction; $325,000 minimum bid (Update)

More information: The article, "Synchronization Transition of Identical Phase Oscillators in a Directed Small-World Network" by Ralf Toenjes (Ochanomizu University), Naoki Masuda (The University of Tokyo) and Hiroshi Kori (Ochanomizu University) appears in the journal CHAOS. link.aip.org/link/CHAOEH/v20/i3/p033108/s1

Related Stories

Microchip Industry Strives to Perfect Its Timing

Dec 08, 2004

Time is money, especially to the semiconductor industry. Electronics manufacturers use extremely sophisticated equipment to churn out the latest microchips, but they have a timing problem. It's very difficult to get all the ...

National chip has low-jitter video ability

Apr 10, 2006

A new video synchronization separator boasts the industry's best "jitter" performance for high-definition applications, National Semiconductor said Monday.

Your Phone. Your Mail. Your Plans. Sync it with MOTOSYNC™

Jul 27, 2004

Motorola, Inc. (NYSE:MOT), a global leader in wireless, broadband and automotive communications technologies, announced the debut of MOTOSYNC™, a secure, over-the-air (OTA) synchronization solution initially available wi ...

Recommended for you

How researchers listen for gravitational waves

4 hours ago

A century ago, Albert Einstein postulated the existence of gravitational waves in his General Theory of Relativity. But until now, these distortions of space-time have remained stubbornly hidden from direct ...

What's fair?: New theory on income inequality

15 hours ago

The increasing inequality in income and wealth in recent years, together with excessive pay packages of CEOs in the U.S. and abroad, is of growing concern, especially to policy makers. Income inequality was ...

Scientists one step closer to mimicking gamma-ray bursts

21 hours ago

Using ever more energetic lasers, Lawrence Livermore researchers have produced a record high number of electron-positron pairs, opening exciting opportunities to study extreme astrophysical processes, such ...

On-demand X-rays at synchrotron light sources

May 26, 2015

Consumers are now in the era of "on-demand" entertainment, in which they have access to the books, music and movies they want thanks to the internet. Likewise, scientists who use synchrotron light sources ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.