Transition to chaos through period doublings

There are several scenarios of transition to chaos. It is amazing that they are common for many dynamical systems.

Period doubling bifurcations cascade

As we have seen for c < c1 = -3/4 the derivative in the left fixed point becomes less then -1. The fixed point loses its stability and an attracting period-2 orbit xo → x1 → xo ... appears. The second iteration of the map f o2(x) get two attracting points (corresponding to the stable cycle) and one unstable fixed point between them.
Note that the first picture and the central part of the second image are very similar. One need reflect in the x axis and squeeze the first image. As since f o2(x) in the center of the right picture is quadratic-like, therefore for c < c2 = -5/4 the attracting fixed point at x = 0 loses its stability again and we get an attracting period-4 orbit (see below) and so on. This is the period doubling bifurcations cascade.
For c3 = -1.375 we get an attracting period 8 orbit. The central part of the image is quadratic-like again.

Universal scaling law

We can trace similarity of period doubling bifurcations on the bifurcation diagram of the quadratic map. You see the first bifurcation in the center and the second one at the bottom of the picture. Small image at the right bottom part of the picture is similar to the whole image.
Second image shows the second period doubling bifurcation. Again at the left bottom part of the picture we see similar squeezed image. After the second stretching the central part of the third period doubling bifurcation coincides with the first pictures. For n → ∞ the two scaling constants converge to α = 2.5029 in the horizontal x direction (dynamical space) and δ =4.669 in the vertical c direction (parameter space).

You see that not only the top parts of these pictures are similar but bottom chaotic bands too. It is called reverse period doubling cascade.

Critical attractor

For large n period of attracting orbit growths as 2n and it becomes very complicated. Due to similarity of bifurcations cn → F, where F = -1.401155... is Myrberg-Feigenbaum point.

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updated 14 July 2006