The DYSCO team consists of 16 faculty members and 4 CNRS researchers. The research of the team focuses on the study of complex dynamical behavior, which is investigated in a variety of experimental systems. Bistability, spontaneous oscillations, spatial pattern formation, chaos and turbulence, among others, are nonlinear dynamical effects which arise from the interaction of a few degrees of freedom through mechanisms that are largely universal and can occur in very different systems. Originally centered on the dynamics of lasers, which are excellent model systems in this context, the research at DYSCO has been constantly renewed, and has gradually widened its scope as its different members were exploring new applications and tackling new challenges, while maintaining a common scientific and technical background. This explains the pioneer works obtained by the team in light pulses propagation along an optical fiber, electron bunches orbiting around a synchrotron or biological functions of living cells.
Deciphering the dynamical mechanisms at work in biological networks casts an original light on how living cells achieve the complex tasks they face. Topological photonics now brings connections with solid-state physics. All these interfaces with other fields bring the inspiration for original and new scientific questions that can be attacked from new perspectives.
Another characteristic of DYSCO research is the strong interaction between experiment and theory, the latter being an important ingredient of nonlinear dynamics. Most experimental groups have also theoretical activities, and internal collaborations between experimental and theoretical groups proved to be fruitful.
As funding becomes increasingly difficult to obtain, it is worth noting that research at DYSCO is at the heart of the Labex CEMPI project, through the “Dynamics of complex systems in optics and atomic physics” and “Physics and Mathematics for Biology” research axes whose leaders are M. Taki and M. Lefranc, respectively. Financial support of DYSCO groups by CEMPI has been important in the last 5 years and has contributed to several successes. Similarly, it is reassuring that DYSCO fits perfectly in the research project of I-SITE ULNE, and more precisely with challenge 2 of the research hub 3 (“Human friendly digital world”) entitled “Taming complexity with innovative conceptual tools”.