An elegant method to study an isolated spiral wave in a thin layer of a batch Belousov–Zhabotinsky reaction under oxygen-free conditions
A method to prepare a uniform thin layer of a batch Belousov–Zhabotinsky (BZ) reaction under oxygen-free conditions for the study of an isolated spiral wave is presented. After a first layer of gel soaked with the BZ solution has been delivered into the reactor, a single spiral wave was initiated, and finally the remaining reactor volume was filled with gel and BZ medium. The completely filled reactor is sealed gas-tightly, yielding oxygen-free, and thus more controlled, reaction conditions. A systematic study of the behaviour of an isolated spiral wave in a ferroin-catalyzed BZ reaction under batch conditions has been performed. Recipes for BZ media that support a slowly rotating meandering spiral were developed. In cases of extremely low excitability (i.e., relative large stimuli are required to induce a propagating wave), the number of petals in the trajectory of a spiral tip decreased due to aging of the reaction system. Since oxygen-free conditions are necessary for the study of the dynamics in three-dimensional excitable media, and the wave velocities of a spiral are sufficiently low, the developed chemical recipes are suitable for studies of the behaviour of scroll waves in three-dimensional systems by optical tomography.