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Spots: breathing, drifting and scattering in a neural field model

Coombes, Stephen; Schmidt, Helmut; Avitabile, Daniele


Helmut Schmidt

Daniele Avitabile


Stephen Coombs

Peter Beim Graben

Roland Potthast

James Wright


Two dimensional neural field models with short range excitation and long range inhibition can exhibit localised solutions in the form of spots. Moreover, with the inclusion of a spike frequency adaptation current, these models can also support breathers and travelling spots. In this chapter we show how to analyse the proper- ties of spots in a neural field model with linear spike frequency adaptation. For a Heaviside firing rate function we use an interface description to derive a set of four nonlinear ordinary differential equations to describe the width of a spot, and show how a stationary solution can undergo a Hopf instability leading to a branch of pe- riodic solutions (breathers). For smooth firing rate functions we develop numerical codes for the evolution of the full space-time model and perform a numerical bifur- cation analysis of radially symmetric solutions. An amplitude equation for analysing breathing behaviour in the vicinity of the bifurcation point is determined. The con- dition for a drift instability is also derived and a center manifold reduction is used to describe a slowly moving spot in the vicinity of this bifurcation. This analysis is extended to cover the case of two slowly moving spots, and establishes that these will reflect from each other in a head-on collision.


Coombes, S., Schmidt, H., & Avitabile, D. (2014). Spots: breathing, drifting and scattering in a neural field model. In P. Beim Graben, S. Coombs, R. Potthast, & J. Wright (Eds.), Neural fields: theory and applicationsSpringer

Acceptance Date Jan 1, 2014
Publication Date Jun 17, 2014
Deposit Date Jul 21, 2016
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Book Title Neural fields: theory and applications
ISBN 9783642545931
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