Modeling the oscillating Belousov – Zhabotinsky chemical reaction
S. Centeno1 and D. Quesada2
1 Miami Dade College, North Campus, Miami FL
2 School of Science, Technology, and Engineering Management, St. Thomas University, Miami Gardens, FL
Chemical reactions play a fundamental role in many processes in nature and life. At the same time, some of these reactions serve as a prototype for new technological applications ranging from biotechnology to quantum information. In this presentation, the kinetics of the well-known Belousov-Zhabotinsky oscillating reaction is studied. The choice of this particular reaction came from its similitude with circadian rhythms and the molecular clocks involved in the human response to microgravity conditions and the presence of electro-magnetic fields. The last facts are important for future deep space travels, as for example, the Mars program. Starting from first principles, chemical reactions often involve three components, diffusion, reaction and convection. The first two components are unaffected by the presence of external fields, while convection is strongly affected by temperature gradients, magnetic and electric fields. Additionally, when reactions occur in confined geometries, the interplay of all these factors lead to the formation of spatial self-organized structures, known as Turing instabilities. In the present communication, the chemical kinetics is modeled as a system on nonlinear differential equations following the scheme NKF. Critical points and conditions of stability are obtained, as well as the conditions leading to an oscillatory behavior. Since the study limited to the kinetics only, convection effects were neglected cause the influence of the magnetic field on the reaction could not be addressed. Even though a system of partial differential equations will include such effect, in this communication, a possible explanation for the Magnetic Field Effect (MFE) is advanced and is in qualitative agreement with experiments performed by a research team from the School of STEM at St. Thomas University.