Control of Spatiotemporal Disorder in Parametrically Excited Surface Waves

T. Epstein and J. Fineberg

The Racah Institute of Physics, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem 91904, Israel

Received 21 August 2003; revised 13 January 2004; published 15 June 2004

Interacting surface waves, parametrically excited by two commensurate frequencies, yield a number of nonlinear states. Near the systemís bicritical point, a state, highly disordered in space and time, results from competition between nonlinear states. Experimentally, this disordered state can be rapidly stabilized to a variety of nonlinear states via open-loop control with a small-amplitude third frequency excitation, whose temporal symmetry governs the temporal and the spatial symmetry of the selected nonlinear state. This technique also excites rapid switching between nonlinear states.