In this presentation, we will explore the history of a reaction discovered 70 years ago in one of the rooms here at Moscow State University and its continuous influence to the field of nonequilibrium dynamics and pattern formation. The oscillatory reaction Boris Belousov discovered, was deemed impossible by scientific journal reviewers at that time but the belief in its validity by Simon Shnoll and the work done by Anatol Zhabotinsky and others proved the early reviewers wrong.
They discovered an oscillatory, homogeneous chemical reaction which became over the years the most investigated reaction-diffusion (RD) system and is now considered the ’fruit fly’ (THE model system) to investigate RD systems in biological, chemical, and physical systems.
We will present some insights into the history of the now called Belousov-Zhabotinsky reaction and new applications, these scientists wouldn’t have thought about decades ago. This project is a collaboration with Konstantin Kiprijanov (Science communicator & historian of science at the Technical University Berlin, Germany) and Richard J. Field (Professor emeritus of chemistry at the University of Montana, USA).