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# Part 1 PARTIAL DERIVATIVES

MAT 295

Chapter 5

Total
differentials
At the end of this chapter, students should be able to:

## Apply total differential in words problem

5.1 Introduction
In chapter 5, the concepts of increments and differentials of a single variable
functions will be generalized to functions of two or more variables. Given a
function of a single variable y f (x ) and a point (c, f (c )) on the curve, the
quantity
y f ( x0 x ) f ( x0 )

y
(c,f(c))

f(x0+x)

f(x0)

x0

x0+x

f(x)

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MAT 295

## The differential of y was defined as

dy f ' ( x ) dx

and represents the change in y along the tangent line at c produced by a change
in x.

## 5.2 Total Differential

Similar terminology is used for a function of two variables, z f ( x, y ). That is,

## x and y are the increments of x and y, and the increment of z is z .

Definition
If z f ( x, y ) , the increment of z denoted as z is given by
z f ( x x, y y ) f ( x, y )

## Note that the increment z depends on x, y, x and y , and is equal to the

change in z as x changes by x and y changes by y . Precisely, the increment in
z refers to the actual change in z when x and/or y changes. To be exact, z
represents the change in the value of z when ( x, y ) changes from ( x, y ) to
( x x, y y ) .

z
f(x+x, y+y)

f(x,y)

z
y

y
(x,y)
x

(x+x, y+y)

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## Part 1 PARTIAL DERIVATIVES

MAT 295

Definition
If z f ( x, y ) , the total differential of z denoted as dz and given by
dz fx ( x, y )dx fy ( x, y )dy

or equivalently,
dz

z
z
dx
dy .
x
y

z dz

## In other words, the estimated change in z may be evaluated by using partial

derivatives such that the total change in z (called total differential) is the
summation of the change in z due to the change in x (keeping y constant) and the
change in z due to the change in y (keeping x constant). The notations dz and
df can be used interchangeably since z f ( x, y ) .

The above definition can be extended to a function of three or more variables. For
instance, given the function w g( x, y, z) the differential in w denoted as dw is
given by,
dw g x dx g y dy g zdz .

## Identify the variables and partial derivatives

Find partial differentiation
Apply total differential

Example 1
Find the differential df given f ( x, y ) x cos y y sin x .

Solution

Variables

: x and y

## Partial derivatives: f x and fy

Find partial differentiation
fx cos y y cos x
69

fy x sin y sin x

## Apply total differential

df fx dx fy dy
(cos y y cos x )dx (x sin y sin x )dy

Example 2
Find the differential df given f ( x, y ) ln( xy ) x 2 y .

Solution

Variables

: x and y

## Partial derivatives: f x and fy

Find partial differentiation
fx

1
1
( y ) 2x 2x
xy
x

fy

1
1
(x) 1 1
xy
y

## Apply total differential

df fx dx fy dy
1 y
1

dy
2x dx
x

Example 3
Find the increment and total differential of f ( x, y ) y 2 x 2 y .

Solution

## Increment (actual change) in f:

f f ( x x, y y ) f ( x, y )

f y y 2 x x 2 y y y 2 x 2 y

y 2 2yy ( y ) 2 x 2 2xx ( x ) 2 y y y 2 x 2 y

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MAT 295

MAT 295

y 2 x 2y

## 2yy ( y ) 2 2xyx y ( x ) 2 x 2 y 2xxy ( x ) 2 y

x 2xy yx y 2y y x 2 2xx ( x ) 2

## Total differential (estimated change) in f:

df

f
f
dx
dy
x
y
fx 2xy

f y 2y x 2

df 2xy dx 2y x 2 dy

Warm up exercise
Let w ( p, q ) p 2 q 2 .
(i)

## Find the increment (or actual change) in w if (p,q) changes to

p p, q q .
(ii)

Write the formula for estimating the change in w using partial derivatives.

(iii)

a)

Calculate w.

b)

What is p and q

c)

## Calculate dw and compare your answer with the value w. Whats

your observation?

5.3 Applications
In measurement, the total differential is used in estimating f of a function f based
on x of the independent variable x and y of the independent variable y such
that
f fx ( x, y )x fy ( x, y )y

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MAT 295

## Identify the variables and partial derivatives

Find partial differentiation
Identify values of x, y, x and y (if any)
Apply total differential

Example 4
Estimate by a differential the change in f if ( x, y ) changes from (32, 16) to
2

Solution

Variables

: x and y

## Partial derivatives: f x and fy

Find partial differentiation
3

2
fx yx 5 y
5
fy

2
5
x

1 x
2 y

## Identify values of x, y, x and y (if any)

( x, y ) (32,16)

and

( x x, y y ) (35,18)

(32,16)

zdz

x=3

(35, 18)

y=2

x 35 32 3

y 18 16 2

f fx x fy y

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MAT 295

1 x
2

5
f yx
y x x 5
y
2 y
5

## Then substitute (32, 16) into the formula of total differential

3
2

1 (32)
2

5
5
df (16 )(32) 16 (3) (32)
( 2)
2 16
5

3 4 2( 4 4)
5

2
5
30.4
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Example 5
Use differential to estimate

27 3 1021

Solution

## Step 1: Represent the problem into mathematical expression in the form of a

function

f ( x, y ) x 3 y
f (27,1021) 27 3 1021

fx ( x, y )

fy ( x, y )

2 x

x
33 y2

For

x = 25;

x = 27 25 = 2

## For 3 y the closest to 1021:

y = 1000;
10
fx (25,1000 )
10
1

y = 1021- 1000 = 21
5
3(100 )
1

60

fy (25,1000 )

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MAT 295

df fx dx fy dy
1
(1)(2) (21)
60
2.35

## In this case, f (27,1021) changes to f (25,1000 ) or

f ( x x, y y ) f ( x, y ) f

f (27,1021) f (25,1000 ) f
f (25,1000 ) df

; f df

25 3 1000 2.35
(50(10 ) 2.35
52.35

Example 6
Given that y kw 4 , where k is a constant. Calculate the approximate
percentage in y if w is increased by 3% and is decreased by 2.5%.

Solution

Given
y kw 4
w 3% of w 0.03w
2.5% of 0.025

y w k 4

y 4kw 3
dy y w w y

0.03kw 4 0.1kw 4
kw 4 (0.03 0.1)

0.07kw 4 0.07 y

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## Part 1 PARTIAL DERIVATIVES

MAT 295

Warm up exercise
Let f ( x, y ) x 4 y
(i) Find f x and fy .
(ii) Find x and y if the change in f is from (121, 16) to (125, 17),
(iii) Find f x and fy if x = 121 and y = 16.
(iv) Use the total differential to find the approximate value of

125 4 17 .

Exercise 5
Total Differential and its Application
1.

2.

3.

125 4 17 .

to (2.1, 1.9).

4.

## Use the total differential to approximate the change in f ( x, y ) as ( x, y ) varies from

P to Q. Compare your estimate with the actual change in f ( x, y ) .
a) f ( x, y ) x 2 2xy 4x ; P(1, 2), Q(1.01, 2.04)
b) f ( x, y )
c) f ( x, y )
d)

5.

1 1
3
x y2;

## P(8, 9), Q(7.78, 9.03)

xy
; P(-1, -2), Q(-1.02, -2.04)
xy

## f ( x, y ) ln 1 xy ; P(0, 2), Q(-0.09, 1.98)

Use the differential to estimate the change in z xy 2 from its value at (0.5, 1.0)
to its value at (0.503, 1,004). Compare the error in this estimate with the distance
between the points (0.5, 1.0) and (0.503, 1.004).

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6.

MAT 295

1
2 2
3y ) .

Use

## differentials to approximate the temperature difference between the points (6, 2)

and (6.1, 2.2) correct to 4 decimal places.

7.

Estimate

the

value

of

V(1.02,1.99)

using

differential

if

V ( x, y ) 2y 3 3x 4 6x 2y 3

8.

## Compute f and df for the following functions:

a) f ( x, y )

1
2
xy

given

x 1,

y 4, x 0.1, y 0.2

b) f ( x, y ) 3x 2 2xy y 2 , given x 2, y 5,

9.

x 0.01,

y 0.05

## If f ( x, y ) x 2 2y 4 , use total differential to estimate the change in f if ( x, y )

changes from (2,1) to (2.01, 0.99). Hence, use it to evaluate f(2.01, 0.99).

10.

The dimensions of a cylindrical tin can, change from radius 3 cm and height 4 cm
to radius 2.9 cm and height 4.2 cm. Estimate the change in the volume.

11.

## Use total differential to estimate the change in f if f ( x, y ) y

changes from 32,16 to 35,18 . Hence, estimate f(35,18).

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2
5
x

x y and ( x, y )