Time-delayed feedback control of unstable periodic orbits near a subcritical Hopf bifurcation

G. Brown*, C. M. Postlethwaite, M. Silber

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


We show that the Pyragas delayed feedback control can stabilize an unstable periodic orbit (UPO) that arises from a generic subcritical Hopf bifurcation of a stable equilibrium in an n-dimensional dynamical system. This extends results of Fiedler et al. [B. Fiedler, V. Flunkert, M. Georgi, P. Hvel, E. Schll, Refuting the odd-number limitation of time-delayed feedback control, Phys. Rev. Lett. 98(11) (2007) 114101], who demonstrated that such a feedback control can stabilize the UPO associated with a two-dimensional subcritical Hopf normal form. The Pyragas feedback requires an appropriate choice of a feedback gain matrix for stabilization, as well as knowledge of the period of the targeted UPO. We apply feedback in the directions tangent to the two-dimensional center manifold. We parameterize the feedback gain by a modulus and a phase angle, and give explicit formulae for choosing these two parameters given the period of the UPO in a neighborhood of the bifurcation point. We show, first heuristically, and then rigorously by a center manifold reduction for delay differential equations, that the stabilization mechanism involves a highly degenerate Hopf bifurcation problem that is induced by the time-delayed feedback. When the feedback gain modulus reaches a threshold for stabilization, both of the genericity assumptions associated with a two-dimensional Hopf bifurcation are violated: the eigenvalues of the linearized problem do not cross the imaginary axis as the bifurcation parameter is varied, and the real part of the cubic coefficient of the normal form vanishes. Our analysis reveals two qualitatively distinct cases when the degenerate bifurcation is unfolded in a two-parameter plane. In each case, the Pyragas-type feedback successfully stabilizes the branch of small-amplitude UPOs in a neighborhood of the original bifurcation point, provided that the feedback phase angle satisfies a certain restriction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)859-871
Number of pages13
JournalPhysica D: Nonlinear Phenomena
Issue number9-10
StatePublished - Apr 15 2011


  • Degenerate Hopf bifurcation
  • Delay differential equations
  • Pyragas control
  • Subcritical Hopf bifurcation
  • Time-delayed feedback

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Mathematical Physics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Applied Mathematics


Dive into the research topics of 'Time-delayed feedback control of unstable periodic orbits near a subcritical Hopf bifurcation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this