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# Order of a Differential Equation

The order of a differential equation is the order of the highest derivative included in the
equation.

## Example 1: State the order of the following differential equations

Solution to Example 1

1. The highest derivative is dy/dx, the first derivative of y. The order is therefore 1.

2. The highest derivative is d2y / dx2, a second derivative. The order is therefore 2.

## Linearity a Differential Equation

A differential equation is linear if the dependent variable and all its derivative occur
linearly in the equation.

## Example 2: Which of these differential equations are linear?

Solution to Example 2

## 3. The term ln y is not linear. This differential equation is not linear.

4. The terms d3y / dx 3, d2y / dx 2 and dy / dx are all linear. The differential equation is
linear.

Example 3:

Example 4:

## General form of the second order linear differential equation.

Exercises: Determine the order and state the linearity of each differential below.

## 1. order 3 , non linear.

2. order 1 , linear.

## 3. order 1 , non linear.

4. order 2 , linear.

## Simple Differential Equation

This is a tutorial on solving simple first order differential equations of the form

y ' = f(x)

## A set of examples with detailed solutions is presented and a set of exercises is

presented after the tutorials. Depending on f(x), these equations may be solved
analytically by integration. In what follows C is a constant of integration and can take
any constant value.
Example 1: Solve and find a general solution to the differential equation.

y ' = 2x + 1

Solution to Example 1:

## Integrate both sides of the equation.

∫ y ' dx = ∫ (2x + 1) dx
which gives

y = x 2 + x + C.

As a practice, verify that the solution obtained satisfy the differential equation given
above.

## Example 2: Solve and find a general solution to the differential equation.

2 y ' = sin(2x)

Solution to Example 2:

## ∫ y ' dx = ∫ (1/2) sin(2x) dx

Let u = 2x so that du = 2 dx, the right side becomes

y = ∫ (1/4) sin(u) du

Which gives.

## Example 3: Solve and find a general solution to the differential equation.

y 'e -x + e 2x = 0
Solution to Example 3:

Multiply all terms of the equation by e x and write the differential equation of the form y '
= f(x).

y ' = - e 3x

## Integrate both sides of the equation

∫ y ' dx = ∫ - e 3x
dx

## Let u = 3x so that du = 3 dx, write the right side in terms of u

y = ∫ (-1/3) e u du

Which gives.

y = (-1/3) e u = (-1/3) e 3x

a) 2y ' = 6x

## b) y ' cos x = sin(2x)

c) y ' e x = e 3x

## Solutions to the above exercises

a) y = (3/2) x 2 + C

b) y = -2 cos x + C

c) y =(1 / 2) e 2x + C

## Separable Differential Equation

What are separable differential equations and how to solve them?

## This is a tutorial on solving separable differential equations of the form

y ' = f(x) / g(y)

Examples with detailed solutions are presented and a set of exercises is presented after
the tutorials. Depending on f(x) and g(y), these equations may be solved analytically.

## Example 1: Solve and find a general solution to the differential equation.

y ' = 3 ey x2

Solution to Example 1:

We first rewrite the given equations in differential form and with variables separated,
the y's on one side and the x's on the other side as follows.

e -y dy = 3 x 2 dx

∫e -y
dy = ∫ 3 x 2 dx

which gives

## y = - ln( - x 3 - C ) , where C = C2 - C1.

As practice, verify that the solution obtained satisfy the differential equation given
above.

## y ' = sin x / (y cos y)

Solution to Example 2:

## Separate variables and write in differential form.

y cos y dy = sin x dx

## Integrate both sides

∫ y cos y dy = ∫ sin x dx
The left side may be integrated by parts

## In this case there is no simple formula for y as a function of x.

y = (-cos x - cos y + C ) / sin y , where C = C2 - C1

## Exercises: Solve the following separable differential equations.

a) y ' = -9 x 2 y 2

b) y ' = - 2x e y

## Solutions to the above exercises

a) y = 1 / (3x 3 + C)

b) y = - ln (x 2 + C)