Questions on the calculus of variations, which deals with the optimization of functionals mostly defined on an infinite dimensional spaces.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

1
vote
1answer
296 views

Minimization of Variational - Total Variation (TV) Deblurring

Under the Linear Blurring Model - $ f = H \ast u $. I'm trying to calculate the Euler Lagrange of with respect to $ u $ of the functional: $$ E \left( u \right) = {\left\| f - H \ast u ...
15
votes
8answers
10k views

Why does a circle enclose the largest area?

In this wikipedia, article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circle#Area_enclosed its stated that the circle is the closed curve which has the maximum area for a given arc length. First, of all, I would ...
5
votes
0answers
655 views

Maximum and minimum of an integral under integral constraints.

Find the maximum and minimum of the following integral in terms of $f(x),a,C$: \begin{align}I=\int_{0}^{a} \frac{x}{f(x)}p(x)dx \end{align} s.t.: 1) $\int_{0}^{a} p(x)dx=1$ 2) $\int_{0}^{a} ...
11
votes
5answers
5k views

Introductory text for calculus of variations

I am currently working on problems that require familiarity with calculus of variations. I am fairly new to this field. Please suggest a good introductory book for the same that could help me pick up ...
4
votes
1answer
448 views

Assumption that $\delta q'$ is small in the derivation of Euler-Lagrange equations.

I have never completely understood the justification of this step in the derivation of the E-L equation: $\delta L = L(q + \delta q, q' + \delta q', x) - L(q, q', x) = \partial_q L \delta q + ...
4
votes
2answers
140 views

Minimizing a functional with a free boundary condition

Find the extremals of the functional $$\text{J}(y)= y^2(1) + \int_0^1 y'^2(x)dx , \ \ y(0)=1.$$ Answer: $y(x)=1-\frac{1}{2}x$ My solution: $ F (x,y,y')=y'^2(x)$ After solving the ...
10
votes
1answer
162 views

To find the minimum of $\int_0^1 (f''(x))^2dx$

I was trying to solve a question of an entrance exam. I am completely stuck in the problem. I am not able to find idea how to proceed. Please help me. Let $A$ be the set of twice continuously ...
11
votes
5answers
530 views

When is the moment of inertia of a smooth plane curve is maximum?

Given a smooth plane curve $(x(s),y(s))$, parameterized in arc length $s$, of fixed finite length $L$, its moment of inertia about its center of mass (axis perpendicular to the plane) is given as $$MI ...
1
vote
1answer
82 views

The functional $I[w] = \int_U \frac{1}{2} |Dw|^2 - fw \, dx$ is weakly lower semicontinuous

I am studying calculus of variation, and I need to prove that $I[w] = \int_U \frac{1}{2} |Dw|^2 - fw \, dx$ with $f \in L^2(U)$ is weakly lower semicontinuous on $H_0^1(U)$. In classes, I only ...
51
votes
10answers
2k views

Arc length contest! Minimize the arc length of $f(x)$ when given three conditions.

Contest: Give an example of a continuous function $f$ that satisfies three conditions: $f(x) \geq 0$ on the interval $0\leq x\leq 1$; $f(0)=0$ and $f(1)=0$; the area bounded by the graph of $f$ and ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Euler-Lagrange, Gradient Descent, Heat Equation and Image Denoising

For an image denoising problem, the author has a functional $E$ defined $$E(u) = \iint_\Omega F \;\mathrm d\Omega$$ which he wants to minimize. $F$ is defined as $$F = \|\nabla u \|^2 = u_x^2 + ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

satisfy the Euler-Lagrange equation

Two circles of unit radius, each normal to the line through their centers are a distance d apart. A soap film is formed between themas shown below; energetic considerations require the filem to ...
5
votes
2answers
393 views

Optimization problem using Reproducing Kernel Hilbert Spaces

I am encountering a problem concerning Reproducing Kernel Hilbert Spaces (RKHS) in the context of machine learning using Support Vector Machines (SVMs). With refernece to this paper [Olivier ...
4
votes
1answer
68 views

Find minimizer of the functional $l(u)= \int_{-1} ^1 u(t) \mathbb d t$

Find minimizer of the functional $ l(u)= \int \limits _{-1} ^1 u(t) \mathbb d t $ with $u(-1)=u(1)=0 $ subject to $g(u)=\int \limits _{-1} ^1 \sqrt{1+u'(t)} \mathbb d t=π $. I solved it using ...
3
votes
2answers
231 views

Intuition behind variational principle

Hofer-Zehnder, in section 1.5, proves that every Hamiltonian field on a strictly convex compact regular energy surface carries a periodic orbit. I have understood the proof. What I am wondering about ...
2
votes
2answers
94 views

A variational problem with a lagrangian , what is the lagrangian?

given the 2 PDE $$ \Delta u-au_{tt}+u_{t}=0$$ and $$ \Delta u + Du*Df=0 $$ here $ \Delta u $ is the Laplacian $ Du= grad(u) $ is the gradient and * means scalar product $u_{t} = \frac{\partial ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

Variation under constraint

I always can't compute right.$u=u(x),R=R(x)$ and $\tau$ is constant, and $M$ is compact manifold.If $u$ is the minimizer of $$ \inf\{\int_M [\tau(4|\nabla u|^2+Ru^2)-u^2\ln ...
0
votes
1answer
214 views

Euler-Lagrange equation [duplicate]

This is PDE Evans, 2nd edition: Chapter 8, Exercise 2: Find $L=L(p,z,x)$ so that the PDE $$-\Delta u + D\phi \cdot Du = f \quad \text{in }U$$ is the Euler-Lagrange equation corresponding to the ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Geodesics of a Sphere in Cartesian Coordinates

I want to minimize $I = \int |\dot{x}|^2 dt$ subject to the constraint $|x|^2=1$ (sphere) which gives an Euler equation of $\lambda x - \ddot{x} = 0$. I have to show that the Euler equation is ...
2
votes
1answer
105 views

An MCQ for finding the extremal of the functional $J = \int_{a}^{b} F(x, y, y^{'})$

Consider a functional $$J = \int_{a}^{b} F(x, y, y^{'}),$$ where $F(x, y, y^{'}) = \frac{1 + y^{2}}{(y^{'})^2}$ for admissible function $y(x).$ Which of the following are extremals for $J$? $y(x) = ...
1
vote
1answer
319 views

An elementary (?) minimization problem

This morning, in Italy, there was the national exam of mathematics for students of high schools. One of the exercises asked to solve Heron's problem: given a straight line and two points lying on the ...
1
vote
1answer
299 views

Maximizing a function by finding derivative

I want to find the value of $\vec{p}$, $p_s$, $p_t$ each of which is a function of the form $f:\mathbb{R}^2 \to \mathbb{R}$ that maximize the following function : $$\begin{align} \int_\mathbb{R^2} ...
65
votes
1answer
3k views

What's the largest possible volume of a taco, and how do I make one that big?

Let $f$ be a continuous, even function over some interval $I=[-a,a]$ such that the total arc length of $f$ over $I$ is at least $2$, $f(0)=0$, and $f$ is increasing on $(0,a)$. [You might imagine ...
16
votes
1answer
417 views

Arnol'd's trivium problem #68

I came across this blog that says that its French version has answers to most of Arnol'd's trivium problems, and I figured I'd try my hand at some of the ones they don't have. Number 68 raised my ...
14
votes
4answers
432 views

How can $y$ and $y'$ be independent in variational calculus?

In variational calculus, functionals are written as \begin{eqnarray} F = \int f(x,y,y') dx \end{eqnarray} Where $F$ depends upon choice of $y,y'$. But for smooth regular functions specifying the $y$ ...
15
votes
2answers
259 views

Time-optimal control to the origin for two first order ODES - Trying to take control as we speak!

I want to find the time optimal control to the origin of the system: $$\dot{x}_1 = 3x_1+ x_2$$ $$\dot{x}_2 = 4x_1 + 3x_2 + u$$ where $|u|\leq 1$ I ran straight into the problem full strength, hit it ...
10
votes
2answers
474 views

Elliptic regularization of the heat equation

This is from PDE Evans, 2nd edition: Chapter 8, Exercise 3: The elliptic regularization of the heat equation is the PDE $$ u_t - \Delta u -\epsilon u_{tt}=0 \quad \text{in }U_T, \tag{$*$}$$ where ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Euler-Lagrange, Gradient Descent, Heat Equation and Image Denoising

I have a question about Euler-lagrange equation which you can check this file. http://www.bekirdizdaroglu.com/ceng/Downloads/ISCE10.pdf, specifically in page 6,equation 8 , not equation 9... There ...
4
votes
3answers
605 views

Reference request: calculus of variations

I am searching for a good book to self-study calculus of variations. It should be fairly complete; build up gradually from the very basics; offer detailed explanations; have some emphasis on ...
4
votes
2answers
393 views

Derivation of Euler-Lagrange equation

Here is a simple (probably trivial) step in the derivation of the Euler-Lagrange equation. If we denote $Y(x) = y(x) + \epsilon \eta(x) $, I want to know why is $\dfrac{\partial ...
0
votes
1answer
41 views

Maximize $J[f] = \int_\mathbb{R} f(x)\log f(x)\,dx$ over smooth surjections $f : \mathbb{R}\to (0, \alpha)$ subject to $\int_\mathbb{R} f(x)\,dx = 1$.

Maximize $J[f] = \int_\mathbb{R} f(x)\log f(x)\,dx$ over smooth surjections $f : \mathbb{R}\to (0, \alpha)$, where $\alpha$ is a real number, subject to $\int_\mathbb{R} f(x)\,dx = 1$. I have no idea ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Calculus of variations: Lagrange multipliers

Given a functional $$J(y)=\int_a^b F(x,y,y')dx, \tag{1}$$ where $y$ is a function of $x$, and a constraint $$\int_a^b K(x,y,y')dx=l, \tag{2}$$ if $y=y(x)$ is an extreme of (1) under the ...
3
votes
2answers
905 views

To find an extremal of the functional $\int_0^1 [(y')^2 + 12 xy] dx$

I have to find extremal of following : $\int_0^1 [(y')^2 + 12 xy] dx$ with $y(0) = 0$ and $y(1) = 1$. I applied the Euler's equation $\frac{\partial F}{\partial y} - \frac{d}{dx}(\frac{\partial ...
2
votes
0answers
81 views

A variational strategy for finding a family of curves?

In a recent question, I asked for examples of families of distinct smooth curves with fixed area and perimeter (which for this question I will dub as doubly-isometric). That wording allows $C^1$ ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

Derivative of $f(x,y)$ with respect to another function of two variables $k(x,y)$

Suppose that we have a function $f(x,y)$ of two variables: $$f(x,y) = g(x) + h(y) + 5(x-y) = x^2 + y^2 + 5(x-y)$$ where $g(x) = x^2$ and $h(y) = y^2$ are also functions of $x$ and $y$, respectively. ...
1
vote
2answers
120 views

How to Invert the Euler Lagrange Equations?

Suppose I have a functional L. For example $L = y+3y'$. Where y is itself a function of real variable x It's easy for me to evaluate the Functional Derivative of L via the Euler Lagrange Equations: ...
1
vote
0answers
153 views

Constraint optimization with Calculus of Variations. How to handle positive function constraint?

the I am attempting to maximize the functional $F[f]$ with a constrain that $f$ has to be non-negative and some other integral constraints. More, specifically, \begin{align*} &\max F[f]\\ ...
1
vote
1answer
402 views

Show that minimum exists (direct method)

Consider $$ F(v):=\int\limits_0^1\lvert v'(x)\rvert^2\, dx, $$ with $$ \left\{v\in H^{1,2}(0,1), v(0)=0=v(1)\right\}. $$ Show that a minimum exists and use the direct method. When I am right ...
14
votes
1answer
277 views

Fastest curve from $p_0$ to $p_1$

I'm trying to solve a problem in path planning: Given points $p_0$ and $p_1$ and vectors $v_0$ and $v_1$, find a function $p(t)$ st. $p(0) = p_0$, $p(T) = p_1$, $p'(0) = v_0$ and $p'(T) = ...
5
votes
1answer
308 views

Calculus of Variations: Contains an integral of my goal function

OK, using the calculus of variations, I want to find a function $f$ that maximizes: $$J = \int_0^n L(x,f(x)) \text{d}x$$. But $L$ has multiple integrals in it (for example, $\displaystyle \int_0^n y ...
2
votes
2answers
156 views

Function extremal - calculus of variations

Find a curve passing through (1,2) and (2,4) that is an extremal of the function: $J(x,y')=\int_1^2 xy'(x)+(y'(x))^2dx$ I don't know what methods to use at all.
2
votes
2answers
177 views

Calculus of variations, what is a functional

I'm reading a bit about the calculus of variations, and I've encountered this bit: Suppose the given function $F(.,.,.)$ is twice continuously differentiable with respect to all of its arguments. ...
2
votes
2answers
149 views

Natural growth conditions and weak solutions for inhomogenous systems.

Let $\Omega\subset \mathbb{R}^n, \ n\geq 2$ be a bounded Lipschitz domain. Consider the following inhomogenous system (in divergence form) subject to zero Dirichlet boundary conditions: ...
2
votes
1answer
90 views

Calculation mistake in variation of length functional?

This should be pretty simple to check if you know the basics of variational calculus. I feel like I am making an obvious mistake somewhere like not using chain rule somewhere. Let $g : \mathbb{R}^n ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

Confusion with Euler-Lagrange Derivation

This is mostly a re-hash of this thread, but it did not receive an adequate answer. In the derivation that I am reading, there is one step that is not justified. Perhaps obvious, but it is not clear ...
1
vote
2answers
350 views

Isoperimetric inequality on the sphere via calculus of variations

The isoperimetric inequality on the sphere of radius 1 asserts that for any closed curve on the sphere, $$L^2 \geq A(4\pi - A)$$ where $L$ is the length of the curve and $A$ is the area it encloses. ...
0
votes
1answer
64 views

Finding extremal of function $J(x,y,y')=\int\left[y'(x)\right]^{2} + 12x\,y\left(x\right)\,{\rm d}x$

Find a curve passing through $\left(0,0\right)$ and $\left(1,1\right)$ that is an extremal for the functional $\displaystyle{{\rm J}\left(x,y,y'\right) = \int\left\{\left[y'(x)\right]^{2} + ...
0
votes
2answers
556 views

Moment of inertia about center of mass of a curve that is the arc of a circle.

Let $(x(s),y(s))$ be a smooth 2-d plane curve which is an arc of a circle of a certain radius $r$. Assume it is represented by an inelastic string $S$ of finite length, lying in a 2-d plane. Let there ...
5
votes
1answer
554 views

Optimizing a functional with a differential equation as a constraint

I am working on solving the following optimization problem. I think it is well-poised but, if not, please give me some pointers that could make the question make more sense. We have a parametric ...
5
votes
3answers
421 views

Treacherous Euler-Lagrange equation

If I have an Euler-Lagrange equation: $(y')^2 = 2 (1-\cos(y))$ where $y$ is a function of $x$ subjected to boundary conditions $y(x) \to 0$ as $x \to -\infty$ and $y(x) \to 2\pi$ as $x \to ...