Differential equations of curves

© All Rights Reserved

23 views

Differential equations of curves

© All Rights Reserved

- Algebra Conquest
- Percentages; & Linear & Quadratic Equations and Inequalities
- Example 3 _ Plane Areas in Rectangular Coordinates _ Integral Calculus Review
- Differential Equation
- Digital Morphogenesis and Computational Architectures
- IAS Mains Mathematics Syllabus
- Catia Tutorial
- C1BS02-C1902-MATHEMATICS-II
- AEM Tutorials
- precalculus
- G Level+V1+MaCNVC08+K1+Algebra+&+Functions
- Untitled
- Analysis Report_NTSE Stage-II (3 Years)
- unit4 mastery copy
- Differential Equation
- abw8205.0001.001.umich.edu_djvu
- BIBLIOGRAPHY Final.docx
- LSTC_PhilipHo_Symposium07
- Southampton Tunnel Tests Details
- Multi-sections Surfaces.pdf

You are on page 1of 5

A Review of Curve Families

Andrew Grossfield

College of Aeronautics

Abstract

This paper is a review of curve families in light of their importance in a course on differential

equations. Many texts depict curve families but do not treat them as an important mathematical

concept that can greatly add to a student’s comprehension of differential equations and

continuous mathematics in general. It is not an accident that the solution of an nth order

differential equation is an n parameter curve family. It is not an accident that the solutions of

linear differential equations are linear curve families. The forms, features and properties of curve

families are discussed. Also to be discussed are the relations of one parameter curve families to

surfaces in three dimensional space.

It is a good question. A student, desirous of answering the question, is not going to obtain a

decent answer in most text books on Differential Equations. These texts assert “An equation with

derivatives.” Obviously! These equations have derivatives in them. But why? Who cares? Why

would anyone be interested? That is as uninformative as telling students that functions are

ordered pairs. What is needed is explanation.

Look at the simplest of the differential equations, those with just one derivative, the first order

differential equations. Instead of focusing on the equation, focus on the solution, an equation

with an independent variable, a dependent variable and a parameter. Solutions of these

differential equations are equations in three variables.

A student who has completed a calculus course is familiar with equations in two variables which

he/she may interpret as curves in a two dimensional plane. Now the student is embarking on a

study of something completely new, a study of equations in three variables. Faculty, of course,

are familiar with the graphical representations of equations in three variables as surfaces and curve

families, but these ideas may not be familiar to students. Perhaps there may be a pedagogical

advantage to ensuring that students understand the relationships between equations in three

variables and surfaces and curve families. There may also be pedagogical advantages to providing

at this time a discussion of surfaces and providing a discussion of curve families.

It is easy to show that beginning with the equation for curve family, F( x, y, pi, p2,... ,p,, ) = 0, in

n parameters one can derive an nthh order differential equation. However; it is only the simplest

Page 2.493.1

differential equations for which it is easy to derive the associated curve family. I am proposing

that students be told that differential equations describe curve families and that solving a

differential equation means finding the equation for the associated curve family. This would then

naturally force a discussion of curve families: what they are and what there is to say about them.

Most important, a curve family is not some graphical aid for solving a differential equation. It is

the solution.

Curve Families

What are curve families? A set of curves that depend on a parameter. If the parameter is time,

then the family could be said to be a moving curve. If the parameter, say p, is replaced with a

function of the parameter, f(p); then the curves are unchanged but the dependence on the

parameter is altered. A curve family in one parameter, p, can be described by an implicit equation

in three variables, F(x, y, p) = 0. This same equation will describe a surface in three dimensional

x-y-p space.

What is there to say about curve families? One could begin with a description of the forms,

properties, and features of curve families. And then examine the relations of curve families to

surfaces and also examine which characteristics of surfaces and curve families have meanings for

the associated differential equation.

Below is a list of common forms for curve families:

0 implicit, H(x> Y, P) = 0

l contour P = F(x, y)

l isolated dependent variable Y = G(x> P)

l differential equation K(Y’, Y, 4 = 0

a5 dy

l plane autonomous system 2= F(x, Y>; -g = G(x> Y>

The implicit form is ordinarily the common way to express a curve family. No variable is granted

precedence over the others. If either variable, p or y, can be isolated, the curve family can be

described by either contour form or isolated independent variable form. The contour form

provides an implicit relationship between the x and y variables for the individual curves of the

family. This form is also of value for computing 3-dimensional plots of an associated surface.

The isolated dependent variable form is good for computing the y values of the curves when the

parameter values are known.

The differential equation relates the slope of a curve to each point through which the curve

moves. Wondrously, this relationship can be enough to determine a whole family of curves that

occupy the region under study. The study of the techniques for obtaining a form of the curve

family without derivatives has constituted the traditional study of differential equations. The

plane autonomous system comprises a popular form for studying non-linear dynamic systems,

Page 2.493.2

which is extendible to multi-variable and higher order systems. The variable t is easily eliminated

by division and the resulting differential equation is first order and linear in y’. The phase plane

plots that accompany the study of plane autonomous systems are no more than the solution curve

families of the associated differential equation. Observe that the autonomous system can be linear

while the associated differential equation is not.

Among interesting properties of curve families are

l normal (monotonic) curve families

a regular curve families

0 linear curve families

Monotonic curve families are families whose curves move in one direction, as the parameter is

incremented. A curve family is regular in a region if only one curve goes through each point and

nearby curves are roughly parallel; that is, the curves appear as non-intersecting sfreamlines.

These families are easy to visualize by drawing typical members. Linear curve families are

families whose parametric forms are linear in the parameters. The solutions of linear differential

equations are linear curve families.

The simple curve families studied in an introductory DE course are regular mostly everywhere.

The most distinguishing features are the points and lines where the regularity disappears. Isolated

points, which lack regularity, called the critical points, are depicted in most introductory texts.

Early in the course students should be provided with examples of the different types of critical

points, -- the center, the saddle, the multiple-saddle, the proper node and the improper node.

Families of level curves for a surface have centers at the maxima and minima of the surface.

These families have saddle points where the surface appears as a saddle. In topographical maps

saddle points represent the mountain passes. While commonly texts do provide the pictures of the

critical points, the pictures are shown deep in the book in a chapter on systems rather than at the

beginning in a section on curve families. (See Borelli ~ 425. See also Borelli, the intriguing table

11.1, pages 476 and 477, which illustrates how nonilinearities can affect the behavior at critical

points of solutions of ODE’s,)

a separatrices or dividing lines

l envelopes

l boundaries

l limit cycles

These features also could be introduced graphically, early in the course as part of a discussion of

curve families.

Page 2.493.3

Connections between surfaces and curve families

Comparing surfaces and curve families the following points should be made evident.

l The family of gradient curves of a surface is orthogonal to the family of level curves

l The family of level curves of a surface has a center at points corresponding to maxima or

minima.

l The family of level curves of a surface has saddle points at points corresponding to passes.

l The family of gradient curves of a surface has proper nodes at points corresponding to

maxima or minima.

Conceptually differential equations do not come with initial conditions. They do describe curve

families. The selection of a particular curve from a curve family has nothing to do with solving a

differential equation. Many texts state that the solution of a differential equation is a function or

curve. Such a definition requires that some kind of condition be attached to the differential

equation in order to determine that unique solution. Historically the major numerical approaches

to finding a solution function entailed constructing the curve incrementally starting with the initial

conditions. But not all problems are initial condition problems. And sometimes it is the family

that is desired. Let’s avoid contusion. Tell your students that the solutions of differential

equations are curve families. How they obtain a particular curve will depend on the problem at

hand and the tools available for confronting that problem.

In many cases the fundamental laws governing continuous physical systems, (such as dynamics,

electronics, electromagnetics, thermodynamics and population dynamics) are relations between

the local (point) values (such as position, speed and acceleration) of the variables of the system.

Application of these laws results in differential equations. Solution of the differential equations

yields global information about the systems such as the curves along which particles may move or

the evolution of the system variables.

Examples

If examples are wanted, the second degree algebraic surfaces serve as a source of algebraically

manipulable problems which exhibit some special features such as maxima, minima, saddlepoints,

etc. Another source of examples can be obtained by relating the parameters in a multi-parameter

family. Selecting functions h(t), k(t), and r(t) for the three parameter family of all circles in the

plane,(x-h)* +(y-k)* =r2, results in a family of moving circles. These families can exhibit a

variety of envelopes and boundaries.

Page 2.493.4

Summary

The above has been an introductory survey of curve families as to their major properties and their

relations to differential equations and surfaces. This paper continues my efforts to focus attention

on the topic structure and treatment of major concepts in college mathematics. I suggest that the

reader examine my previous papers on functions and on curve plotting listed in the references

below.

References:

1. Grossfield, Andrew “On the Intrinsic Structure of Calculus” Proceedings of the 1995 ASEE

Annual Conference, Session 1265 (3 1 l-3 15)

2. Grossfield, Andrew “On the Classification of Functions and Curve Plotting” Proceedings of the

1990 ASEE Annual Conference, Session 2665 (1782-1784)

Approach,” Prentice Hall Publ. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey

Biographical Information

Throughout his career Dr. Grossfield, has combined an interest in engineering design and

mathematics. He earned his BSEE at the City College of New York. During the early sixties, he

obtained an M. S. degree in mathematics at night while working full time during the day, designing

circuitry for aerospace/avionics companies. As a Graduate Associate, pursuing a doctoral degree

at the University of Arizona, he found himself in the odd position of both teaching calculus

courses and taking courses in applied mathematics. Being caught in the middle made him acutely

aware of the differences in mathematics, as viewed by the mathematician, as needed and used by

the engineer and as presented to the student. He is licensed in New York as a Professional

Engineer and is a member of ASEE, IEEE, and SIAM. His e-mail address is

ai207@freenet.buffalo.edu

Page 2.493.5

- Algebra ConquestUploaded byAnonymous
- Percentages; & Linear & Quadratic Equations and InequalitiesUploaded byHuma11
- Example 3 _ Plane Areas in Rectangular Coordinates _ Integral Calculus ReviewUploaded byRomeo Victor
- Differential EquationUploaded byRocket
- Digital Morphogenesis and Computational ArchitecturesUploaded byJulie Ann Quinain
- IAS Mains Mathematics SyllabusUploaded byvipinvns999
- Catia TutorialUploaded bySujay Umarani
- C1BS02-C1902-MATHEMATICS-IIUploaded bySudhakar_08
- AEM TutorialsUploaded byAaron Solis
- precalculusUploaded byapi-262822396
- G Level+V1+MaCNVC08+K1+Algebra+&+FunctionsUploaded byEpic Win
- UntitledUploaded byapi-150547803
- Analysis Report_NTSE Stage-II (3 Years)Uploaded byNilesh Gupta
- unit4 mastery copyUploaded byapi-429226351
- Differential EquationUploaded byseptiadhi wirawan
- abw8205.0001.001.umich.edu_djvuUploaded bygaud28
- BIBLIOGRAPHY Final.docxUploaded byNico Quiroz
- LSTC_PhilipHo_Symposium07Uploaded byAnthony Kelley
- Southampton Tunnel Tests DetailsUploaded byKiky Ichanafi
- Multi-sections Surfaces.pdfUploaded byBorralla Cinza
- Laplace Pde Problems 2019Uploaded byChristophe Le Magicien
- Intro Ducci on Control OptimoUploaded bygarcogiaz
- Solomon EUploaded byLeen Jabban
- semester exam assessment game reviewUploaded byapi-233623316
- Power ShapeUploaded byZulhendri
- Notice_Engl_NDA_NA _I_ Exam_ 2017_0.pdfUploaded bymanoj yadav
- Ch01_SE 1.5Uploaded byGeorge
- C. Von Kerczek and E.O. Tuck. the Representation of Ship Hulls by Conformal Mapping FunctionsUploaded byYuriyAK
- Elementary Differential Equations with Boundary Value Problems.pdfUploaded byThales Iury
- g42244a2015-16iENGUploaded byAnonymous Pz7BCG4

- ELARCOSAOJTUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- solar energy importance.docx.docxUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- L3-2E6-Digital.docxUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- boolean quiz.docxUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- Document (1).docxUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- Assignment in ECE 11Uploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- 05 ComplexityUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- ECE 04 Midterm ExamUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- Operation of SignalsUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- Operation of SignalsUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- PrinCom Chapter 5Uploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- PrinCom Chapter 5.docxUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- Chap 1 AssignmentUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- GEAS IECEP.pdfUploaded byHenryboi Cañas
- Deformable Review QuizUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- Re AccreditationUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- F6-Semestral Accomplishment Report PrototypeUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- F1-Member Information SheetUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- F11 Accreditation OrganizationsUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- F7 Action PlanUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- F7 Action PlanUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- F10-Satisfaction Survey FormUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- ConclusionsUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- F3 Letter RequestUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa
- F2-RosterUploaded byBenjhon S. Elarcosa

- 10 02 Parabolic PDE IntroUploaded byJohn Bofarull Guix
- Parametric Differentiation - Solutions.pdfUploaded bywolfretonmaths
- Mathematics-Derivatives.pdfUploaded byKartik Purwar
- 22. CSE.pdfUploaded byDhivya Janarthanan
- I_SEM_Common_syllabus_B.EB.Tech.pdfUploaded byKumar Madhu
- MTH 3311 Revised(Course Outline)Uploaded bySalman ShaxShax Heiss
- ANU PG Sem Wise Time Table 2016Uploaded bypavani
- M53 Lec2.3A Higher Order Derivatives Implicit DifferentiationUploaded bykatvchu
- Tutorial IIUploaded bySubodh
- Basic and Advanced Regulatory Control - System Design and Application.pdfUploaded byMahmoud Sakr
- 20161013155202-bembachemical-sem1to6thsemUploaded bystankovic dejan
- leibniz-paperUploaded byCiro De Pasquale
- CQF Mathsprimer BrochureUploaded byordonezc78
- 3.Bsc Maths SyllabusUploaded byBrindaThankaswamy
- Concept ListUploaded byDiego Saul
- stochasticdesUploaded byAbraham Sauvingnon
- CUSAT old syllabus-mechanical engineeringUploaded bypramodkb_cusat
- Finite Element Methods for Option PricingUploaded byDaniel Fernandez O'Dogherty
- SyllabusUploaded byanon-431330
- Galerkin MethodUploaded byCarmen Lopez
- Further MathematicsUploaded byMohd Tirmizi
- Advance calculus Notes 1Uploaded byAlice Yuen
- i b.tech S-13 SyllabusUploaded byNarayana Reddy
- MATH226.1x_SyllabusUploaded byHeidi Webb
- B.sc. MathematicsUploaded byAthul Ks
- Nus Module 2014-2015 Sem 2 (Updated)Uploaded byAng Song Gee
- 10.7weUploaded byIsaiah Qe Liew
- HessianUploaded byRamKrishna108
- DEUploaded byRobertBellarmine
- B.Arch SyllabusUploaded byNagaraja Prasanna Rass

## Much more than documents.

Discover everything Scribd has to offer, including books and audiobooks from major publishers.

Cancel anytime.