This semester the Capstone (M451H) course
first considered the BZ reaction in a closed
reactor (glass beaker)
with continuous stirring (spatially
The experiments are performed for each of the
six groups (two students per group)
with their own recipes for the
chemical oscillation. Thanks for Prof. Nadim's kind
assistance and generosity, we are able to utilize
some equipments in their neurobiology labs at Rutgers
to make sure the toxic chemicals do not cause
any hazards during and after the experiments.
reactions are modeled
by a system of ordinary differential equations.
Before the experiments,
students learn how to use the Law of Mass
Action to derive
ordinary differential equation models of
Students learn linear stability analysis
by conducting a local analysis on the ODEs.
Several nonlinear dynamics system approaches
have been adopted in this semester.
The first is the relaxed oscillation method,
allowing students to estimate the period
of chemical oscillations in their experiments.
The second is the numerical approach to determine
the period of chemical oscillation.
In the experiments students
employed potentiometric methods
to directly measure the concentrations
of the important components
in this reaction using special electrodes
and the LabPro equipment;
the experimental results were compared
to the theoretical model
Also, the BZ reaction in Petri dishes
reaction) was considered.
performed the experiment and
modeled it with a system of
equations. Some theoretical
tools for the analysis of the
dynamical system comprised of
differential equations were presented,
and some numerical tools to solve
such models of the experiment were
employed. Also, a video camera
was used to record the evolution of
target patterns and spiral waves
in an attempt to compare the
observed chemical wave speed
with that obtained through theory and
- To learn how differential equations arise in the modeling of
- To learn how to measure quantities of interest while a
chemical reaction is occuring.
- To learn how useful the Belousov-Zhabotinskii reaction is in
diverse scientific areas.
- To see how one can employ mathematical models to simulate
- To see how one can employ mathematical analysis to guide
- To gain more experience in writing a scientific report and
constructing a public presentation of scientific results.