Fluctuations and stability in front propagation
Physics Department, Oakland University - Rochester, MI 48309, USA
2 Department of Physics, University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1040, USA
3 Center for the Study of Complex Systems, University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1040, USA
Accepted: 3 January 2011
Propagating fronts arising from bistable reaction-diffusion equations are a purely deterministic effect. Stochastic reaction-diffusion processes also show front propagation which coincides with the deterministic effect in the limit of small fluctuations (usually, large populations). However, for larger fluctuations propagation can be affected. We give an example, based on the classic spruce budworm model, where the direction of wave propagation, i.e., the relative stability of two phases, can be reversed by fluctuations.
PACS: 82.40.Ck – Pattern formation in reactions with diffusion, flow and heat transfer / 87.23.Cc – Population dynamics and ecological pattern formation / 02.50.Ey – Stochastic processes
© EPLA, 2011