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This content is associated with the DCASS Art-in-Science competition.

Falling Apart, Increasingly Chaotic

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A map of bifurcation parameters on each axis. As the bifurcation parameters are varied, the discrete dynamical system of 3-D Poor Man's Navier-Stokes Equations exhibits different regime types (i.e. subharmonic, periodic, noisy quasiperiodic, etc.) each corresponding to a certain color. From the left, the subharmonic regime breaks down as bifurcation parameters are varied, towards the right, with the black color corresponding to divergent behavior. The organized flow regime breaks down, with fractal transitions between other regimes, increasingly chaotic.

Art-in-Science competition

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The DCASS Art-in-Science Competition gives participants an opportunity to demonstrate that art and science are not distinct enterprises. The process of discovery in science and engineering parallels the artistic creative processes and can give rise to images of sublime beauty.

Explosion in space

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Slow motion video of the chaos of a latex balloon burst at 93,000 ft. Lighting effects are caused by the dynamics of the package rotating relative to the sun. The blackness of space can be seen, as this happened above 99% of the Earth’s atmosphere. Video from the payload of an experiment launched by the Wright State University High Altitude Balloon team. More info at:

Understanding vortex formation of biolocomotion in nature

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This video is of a direct numerical simulation (DNS) of unsteady vortex formation of a dragonfly in take-off flight. The dragonfly kinematics were reconstructed from data that was collected using 3 High-Speed Cameras to record the motion in a 3-axis coordinate system.

Death throes of a micro-pulsed plasma thruster

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The video depicts the spark formation of a Micro-Pulsed Plasma Thruster as the thruster ceases to operate properly. The video is taken at 1 million frames per second. For scale, the thruster is only 3.1 mm in diameter.

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