Detection of symmetric homoclinic orbits to saddle-centres in reversible systems

Kazuyuki Yagasaki, T Wagenknecht

Research output: Working paper

23 Citations (Scopus)
367 Downloads (Pure)


We present a perturbation technique for the detection of symmetric homoclinic orbits to saddle-centre equilibria in reversible systems of ordinary differential equations. We assume that the unperturbed system has primary, symmetric homoclinic orbits, which may be either isolated or appear in a family, and use an idea similar to that of Melnikov's method to detect homoclinic orbits in their neighbourhood. This technique also allows us to identify bifurcations of unperturbed or perturbed, symmetric homoclinic orbits. Our technique is of importance in applications such as nonlinear optics and water waves since homoclinic orbits to saddle-centre equilibria describe embedded solitons (ESs) in systems of partial di®erential equations representing physical models, and except for special cases their existence has been previously studied only numerically using shooting methods and continuation techniques. We apply the general theory to two examples, a four-dimensional system describing ESs in nonlinear optical media and a six-dimensional system which can possess a one-parameter family of symmetric homoclinic orbits in the unperturbed case. For these examples, the analysis is compared with numerical commputations and an excellent agreement between both results is found.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 22 Jul 2005

Bibliographical note

Additional information: Submitted to Elsevier preprint

Sponsorship: Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (K.Y.) and EPSRC grant number GR/535684/01 (T.W.)


  • reversible system
  • homoclinic orbit
  • perturbation technique
  • embedded soliton


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