BUILDING UP VIRTUAL MATHEMATICS

LABORATORY
Partnership project LLP-2009-LEO-МP-09, MP 09-05414

Solved Problems
on Limits at Infinity, Asymptotes and
Dominant terms

------------------ Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva, Plovdiv University ---------------------

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General technique
for finding limits with singularities
In all limits at infinity or at a singular finite point,
where the function is undefined, we try to apply the
following general technique.
This has to be known by heart:
The general technique is to isolate the
singularity as a term and to try to cancel it.

------------------ Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva, Plovdiv University ---------------------

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Find the limit x lim x→∞ 2 x + 1 . Solution. Plovdiv University --------------------- 3/24 .Problem 1.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. The singular point is x=∞. x x 1 lim lim = = lim 1 1 x→∞ 2 x + 1 x→∞ x→∞ x(2 + ) (2 + ) x x 1 1 1 = = = 1 (2 + lim ) (2 + 0) 2 x→∞ x -----------------. The numerator and denominator are growing to infinity at x →∞.

Plovdiv University --------------------- 4/24 .Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva.Problem 2. We apply the general technique: 3 1 x (1 − + 2 ) 2 x − 3x + 1 x x = lim lim 2 x→∞ 3 x 2 − 2 x x→∞ 2 x (3 − ) x 3 1 lim (1 − + 2 ) 1− 0 − 0 1 x→∞ x x = = = 2 3−0 3 lim (3 − ) x→∞ x 2 -----------------. Solution. Find the limit lim x→∞ x 2 − 3x + 1 3x 2 − 2 x .

Find the limit lim x→−∞ x 7 x2 + 1 . x = lim x→−∞ 7 x 2 + 1 x x = lim lim x→−∞ x→−∞ 1 1 2 2 x (7 + 2 ) x (7 + 2 ) x x −1 −1 x x lim = lim = = x→−∞ x→−∞ 1 1 1 7 x (7 + 2 ) 7 + lim 2 (−x) 7 + 2 x→−∞ x x x -----------------. Plovdiv University --------------------- 5/24 .Problem 3.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. The singular point is x =− ∞. Solution.

The singular point is x = ∞.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. It is not difficult to observe that the denominator approaches 0 at x→∞. Solution. Find the limit lim x→∞ 1 x +1 − x −1 . Plovdiv University --------------------- 6/24 .Problem 4. To isolate this singularity we rationalize the denominator by using the formula A2 − B 2 = ( A + B )( A − B ) -----------------.

Plovdiv University --------------------- 7/24 .lim x→∞ lim x→∞ 1 = lim x + 1 − x − 1 x→∞ ( ( x +1 + x −1 x +1 − x −1 )( x +1 + x −1 ) x +1 + x −1 x +1 + x −1 x +1 + x −1 = = lim lim 2 2 x→∞ x + 1 − ( x − 1) x→∞ 2 x +1 − x −1 ) ( ) Now apply the general technique x x 1 1 1 1 lim 1 −  lim  1 + + =  1 + lim + 1 − lim  x→∞ 2  x→∞ x x→∞ x  x x  x→∞ 2  x =lim x→∞ 2 ( ) x 1 + 0 + 1 − 0 =lim (1 + 1) =lim x =∞ . x→∞ 2 x→∞ -----------------.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva.

Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. Plovdiv University --------------------- 8/24 . Solution.1) ∪ (1. ∞) . The domain of definition is for all x ≠ 1 .  Horizontal asymptotes at x → ±∞ : 3x + 2 lim = x→∞ x − 1 3x + 2 lim = x→−∞ x − 1 2  1  x  3 +   3 + 2 lim  3+ 0 x→∞ x  x   lim = = = 3 1 1 x→∞  1− 0  x 1 −  1 − xlim  →∞ x   x  2  1  x  3 +   3 + 2 lim  3+ 0 x→−∞ x  x   lim = = = 3 1 1 x→−∞  1− 0  x 1 −  1 lim −  x→−∞  x  x  -----------------. or x ∈ (−∞. Find the asymptotes of the function 3x + 2 f ( x) = x −1 .Problem 5.

when x → 1.  Vertical asymptotes. when x → 1. -----------------.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva.We obtained that there is a horizontal asymptote y = 3 . x < 1 is: 3x + 2 3.1 + 2 5 = = = −∞ lim lim ( x − 1) [ −0] x→1− x − 1 x→1− The right-sided limit. Plovdiv University --------------------- 9/24 . x > 1 is: 3x + 2 5 5 lim = = = ∞ lim ( x − 1) [ +0] x→1+ x − 1 x→1+ The function has two-sided vertical asymptote x = 1 . A finite singular point is x = 1 where the function is undefined. The left-sided limit.

Plovdiv University --------------------- 10/24 . We look for the existence of two numbers k and b. such that at x → ∞ f ( x) k = lim = b lim ( f ( x) − kx ) and (or at x → −∞ ). x→∞ x x→∞ y kx + b is an oblique asymptote of f (x). lim 0 x→∞ x x→∞ (1 − 1/ x ) The same is for x → −∞ . Then the line = k x (3 + 2 / x ) f ( x) 3x + 2 = lim= lim 2 lim x→∞ x x→∞ x ( x − 1) x→∞ x (1 − 1/ x ) 3 + 2 / x) ( 1 = lim . -----------------. Oblique asymptotes. Therefore there is no an oblique asymptote.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva.

6 f(x) 4 y =3 2 10 5 2 1 x=1 5 10 x 3x + 2 f ( x ) = Fig. Draw the graph of the function 3x + 2 f ( x) = x −1 . Plovdiv University --------------------- 11/24 . 1.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva.Problem 6. y8 Using the asymptotes from Problem 5 we obtain the graphics in Fig. 1 Graphics of the function x − 1 with its asymptotes (in blue color). -----------------.

4 x 2 − 25 ≥ 0 . At x → ∞ : ( lim 2 x − x→∞ ( 4 x − 25 ) = lim 2 )( 2 x − 4 x 2 − 25 2 x + 4 x 2 − 25 ( x→∞ 2 x + 4 x 2 − 25 4 x 2 − 4 x 2 + 25 25 lim = lim x→∞ x→∞ 2 x + 4 x 2 − 25 2 x 1 + 1 − 25 / 4 x 2 ( ) ( ) ) ) -----------------. The domain of definition is x ∈ (−∞. ∞) .Problem 7.5.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. Plovdiv University --------------------- 12/24 . Solution. 2. Find the asymptotes of the function f ( x) = 2 x − 4 x 2 − 25 . or  First look for horizontal asymptotes.5] ∪ [ 2.

1 + 1 − 0 = x→−∞  x→−∞ asymptote at x → −∞ . 1 + 1 − lim 2 x→−∞ x →−∞ 4 x  There is no horizontal  4. Plovdiv University --------------------- 13/24 . At x → −∞ : ( )  25   2 lim 2 x − 4 x − = 25 lim  2 x − 4 x 1 − 2    x→−∞ x→−∞  4 x       25  25  = lim  2 x − 2 x 1 − 2 =  lim  2 x + 2 x 1 − 2 =  x→−∞  4 x  x→−∞  4x  2  25 =lim 2 x.25 1 1 25 1 1 25 1 lim . ( ) -----------------.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. lim lim . = = lim 0 = 2 x→∞ x x→∞ 1 + 1 − 25 / 4 x 2 2 x→∞ x 1 + 1 − 0 4 x→∞ x There is a horizontal asymptote y = 0 at x → ∞ . lim x = −∞  =lim 2 x.

Plovdiv University --------------------- 14/24 .  We look for oblique asymptotes at x → −∞ k 25 2x − 2x 1− 2 2 f ( x) 2 x − 4 x − 25 4x = = lim lim lim x→−∞ x x→−∞ x→−∞ x x  25  25 2 x 1 + 1 − 2  2x + 2x 1− 2 4x  4 x  lim lim = = x→−∞ x→−∞ x x  25  = 2 lim 1 + 1 − 2  = 2.2 = 4 x→−∞  ⇒ k = 4. 4x  -----------------.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. There is no finite singular points and no vertical asymptotes.

-----------------. ) As there is [ ∞ − ∞ ] we will rationalize the numerator ( lim x→−∞ )( −2 x − 4 x 2 − 25 −2 x + 4 x 2 − 25 ( −2 x + 4 x 2 − 25 −25 lim = x→−∞ −2 x + 2 x 1 − 25 / x 2 ) ) = lim x→−∞ ( ( 4 x 2 − 25 − 4 x 2 ) −2 x + 4 x 2 − 25 −25 lim = x→−∞ −2 x − 2 x 1 − 0 ) −25 = lim 0 x→−∞ −4 x ⇒ b = 0.= b = lim x→−∞ kx ) ( f ( x) −= ( x→−∞ lim −2 x − 4 x 2 − 25 x→−∞ ( lim 2 x − 4 x 2 − 25 − 4 x ). We obtained the oblique asymptote y = 4x at x → −∞ .Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. Plovdiv University --------------------- 15/24 .

Plovdiv University --------------------- 16/24 . 2. -----------------.Problem 8.5 5 y =0 10 f(x) y =4x 10 x 20 30 40 ( 2 f ( x ) = 2 x − 4 x − 25 Fig.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva.5) = 5.5) = −5 . Using the asymptotes from Problem 5 we obtain the graphics in Fig. 2 Graphics of the function ) with its asymptotes (in blue color). 2 y We find f (2. Draw the graph of the function f ( x) = 2 x − 4 x − 25 .5 f(x) 2. f (−2. 10 5 -2.

function are x1 =  Horizontal asymptotes. The singular points of the −2.Problem 9.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. 2) ∪ (2. Find the asymptotes and draw graphics of the function f ( x) = 2 x3 − 4 x 2 + 15 3 x 2 − 12 Solution. or  The domain of definition is: x ∈ (−∞. −2) ∪ (−2. ∞) . 2 3 x − 12 ≠ 0 . We compute the limits at infinities: -----------------. x2 = 2. Plovdiv University --------------------- 17/24 .

We find the limits at the singular points: lim 2 x3 − 4 x 2 + 15 3 x 2 − 12 … x → 2+ lim 2 x3 − 4 x 2 + 15 … x → 2− lim … x→−2+ 3 x 2 − 12 15 = lim = ∞ x→2+ [ +0] 15 = lim = −∞ x→2− [ −0] 2 x3 − 4 x 2 + 15 3 x 2 − 12 −17 = lim = −∞ x→2+ [ +0] -----------------.2 x − 4 x + 15 3 lim x→±∞ 2 3 x 2 − 12 = lim x→±∞ ( x 2 − 4 / x + 15 / x 3 ( x 2 3 − 12 / x 2 ) 2 )= 2 lim x = ±∞ x→±∞ 3 .Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva.  Vertical asymptotes. Plovdiv University --------------------- 18/24 . This means the absence of the horizontal asymptotes.

Plovdiv University --------------------- 19/24 .2 x − 4 x + 15 −17 lim = lim = ∞ 2 … x→−2− 3x − 12 x→−2− [ −0] −2. For both ±∞ k f ( x) lim = x→±∞ x ( 2 x − 4 x + 15 3 lim x→±∞ ( 2 x 3 x 2 − 12 ) x3 2 − 4 / x + 15 / x 2 2 lim = x→±∞ 3 x3 3 − 12 / x 2 ( ) ) 2 k= ⇒ 3 .Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. x = 2 are We can conclude that the lines x = 3 2 two sided vertical asymptotes. -----------------.  Oblique asymptotes.

Plovdiv University --------------------- 20/24 . 2 x3 − 4 x 2 + 15 2  = − kx ) lim  − x b lim ( f ( x)= 2   x→±∞ x→±∞ 3 − 3 x 12    2 x3 − 4 x 2 + 15 − 2 x3 + 8 x   −4 x 2 + 8 x + 15  4 = lim   = lim   = − 2 2  x→±∞ 3 3 x − 12   x→±∞  3 x − 12  4 b= − ⇒ 3 .Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. 2 4 = y x− 3 3 is an oblique asymptote at infinity The line and negative infinity. -----------------.

3. y = 2/3x -4/3.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. oblique asymptote at x→±∞. see Fig.2 y 10 f(x) 10 5 -2 2 10 5 10 x x=2 y =2/3x.4/3 20 Fig. 3 Graphics of the function f ( x) = 2 x3 − 4 x 2 + 15 3 x 2 − 12 (red color) with its asymptotes (blue color). Plovdiv University --------------------- 21/24 . -----------------. vertical twosided asymptotes. 20 x=.Representation of the graphics of the function f ( x) = 2 x − 4 x + 15 3 2 3 x 2 − 12 and its asymptotes: x = ±2 .

Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. Plovdiv University --------------------- 22/24 . We divide the polynomials of the numerator and denominator to obtain the entire part and the remainder: −2 x + 7 2x − 4x + 3 : x +1 = 2x − 4 + 2 x +1 3 2x + 2x 3 2 2 −4 x 2 − 2 x + 3 −4 x 2 − 4 − 2x + 7 -----------------. Find the dominant terms of the function f ( x) = 2x − 4x + 3 3 2 x2 + 1 Solution.Problem 10.

This way we obtained the representation of the function with its dominant terms: f ( x) = 2 x3 − 4 x 2 + 3 = 2x − 4 + −2 x + 7 . Plovdiv University --------------------- 23/24 .Here the term 2 x − 4 is the entire part and −2 x + 7 is the remainder. and lim f ( x) = ±∞ x→±∞ -----------------. Having the dominant terms it is easy to observe. that x +1 2  f ( x) ≈ 2 x − 4 x2 + 1 for large x.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva.

Further reading: [1] G. [2] http://www. M. R.wolframalpha. Plovdiv University --------------------- 24/24 . D. Thomas.. F. 11 ed. Thomas’ Calculus including second-order differential equations. B. Weir. Pearson Addison-Wesley.Snezhana Gocheva-Ilieva. 2005. Giordano.. Hass. J.com/ -----------------.