Get in synch -- or be enslaved by it

October 19, 2010, American Institute of Physics

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: A delicate balance: New study shows how networks keep themselves in synch

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

December 8, 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

April 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™

July 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 with ...

Recommended for you

Walking crystals may lead to new field of crystal robotics

February 23, 2018

Researchers have demonstrated that tiny micrometer-sized crystals—just barely visible to the human eye—can "walk" inchworm-style across the slide of a microscope. Other crystals are capable of different modes of locomotion ...

Recurrences in an isolated quantum many-body system

February 23, 2018

It is one of the most astonishing results of physics—when a complex system is left alone, it will return to its initial state with almost perfect precision. Gas particles, for example, chaotically swirling around in a container, ...

Seeing nanoscale details in mammalian cells

February 23, 2018

In 2014, W. E. Moerner, the Harry S. Mosher Professor of Chemistry at Stanford University, won the Nobel Prize in chemistry for co-developing a way of imaging shapes inside cells at very high resolution, called super-resolution ...

Hauling antiprotons around in a van

February 22, 2018

A team of researchers working on the antiProton Unstable Matter Annihilation (PUMA) project near CERN's particle laboratory, according to a report in Nature, plans to capture a billion antiprotons, put them in a shipping ...

Urban heat island effects depend on a city's layout

February 22, 2018

The arrangement of a city's streets and buildings plays a crucial role in the local urban heat island effect, which causes cities to be hotter than their surroundings, researchers have found. The new finding could provide ...

0 comments

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.