Oscillon

Oscillon

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In physics, an oscillon is a soliton-like phenomenon that occurs in granular and other dissipative media. Oscillons in granular media result from vertically vibrating a plate with a layer of uniform particles placed freely on top. When the sinusoidal vibrations are of the correct amplitude and frequency and the layer of sufficient thickness, a localized wave, referred to as an oscillon, can be formed by locally disturbing the particles. This meta-stable state will remain for a long time in the absence of further perturbation. An oscillon changes form with each collision of the grain layer and the plate, switching between a peak that projects above the grain layer to a crater like depression with a small rim. This self-sustaining state was named by analogy with the soliton, which is a localized wave that maintains its integrity as it moves. Whereas solitons occur as travelling waves in a fluid or as electromagnetic waves in a waveguide oscillons may be stationary.

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