In dynamical systems, the motion of a particle in some geometric space, governed by some time dependent rules, is studied. The process can be discrete (where the particle jumps from point to point) or continuous (where the particle follows a trajectory). Dynamical systems is used in mathematical ...

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40
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691 views

If $f(x)=x^2-x-1$ and $f^n(x)=f(f(\cdots f(x)\cdots))$, find all $x$ for which $f^{3n}(x)$ converges.

Let $f:\mathbb{R}\to\mathbb{R}$ be the polynomial defined by $$f(x)=x^2-x-1$$ and let $$g_0(x)=f(x),\quad g_1(x)=f(f(x)),\quad\ldots\quad g_n(x)=f(f(f(\cdots f(x)\cdots)))$$ The positive root of ...
33
votes
1answer
1k views

This one weird thing that bugs me about summation and the like

Most of us know $$\sum_{n=a}^b c_n=c_a+c_{a+1}...+c_{b-1}+c_b$$ Some of us know $$\prod_{n=a}^b c_n=c_a \cdot c_{a+1}...c_{b-1} \cdot c_{b}$$ A few of us know ...
31
votes
2answers
761 views

Fekete's conjecture on repeated applications of the tangent function

A high-school student named Erna Fekete made a conjecture to me via email three years ago, which I could not answer. I've since lost touch with her. I repeat her interesting conjecture here, in case ...
28
votes
1answer
3k views

Why isn't the 3 body problem solvable?

I'm new to this "integrable system" stuff, but from what I've read, if there are as many linearly independent constants of motion that are compatible with respect to the poisson brackets as degrees of ...
25
votes
1answer
283 views

Is there an easy way to see that this simple recurrence is 9-periodic?

In a colloquium talk yesterday, Robert Bryant pointed out that for all initial values $a_0, a_1 \in \mathbb{R}$, the sequence generated by the recurrence relation $$ a_{n+1} = |a_n| - a_{n-1} $$ turns ...
24
votes
3answers
1k views

Self Study in Dynamical Systems

I'm trying to get into the field of dynamical systems by (self) studying one-dimensional dynamics and circle homeomorphisms; for my guidance, I'm trying to assemble materials in this field that obey ...
24
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2answers
1k views

Why is the topological pressure called pressure?

Let us consider a compact topological space $X$, and a continuous function $f$ acting on $X$. One of the most important quantities related to such a topological dynamical system is the entropy. For ...
23
votes
2answers
4k views

Perfectly centered break of a perfectly aligned pool ball rack

This question is asked on Physics SE and MathOverflow by somebody else. I don't think it belongs there, but rather here (for reasons given there in my comments there; edit: now self-removed). ...
21
votes
2answers
421 views

Periodic orbits of “even” perturbations of the differential system $x'=-y$, $y'=x$

Fix some even functions $f$ and $g$, differentiable, such that $f(0)=g(0)=0$ and $f'(0)=g'(0)=0$, and consider the autonomous differential system $$\left\{\ \begin{array}{lcr}x'&=&-y+f(x)\\ ...
21
votes
1answer
1k views

When does gradient flow not converge?

I've been thinking about gradient flows in the context of Morse theory, where we take a differentiable-enough function $f$ on some space (for now let's say a compact Riemannian manifold $M$) and use ...
20
votes
2answers
281 views

Can a gradient vector field with no equilibria point in every direction?

Suppose that $V:\mathbb{R}^n \to \mathbb{R}$ is a smooth function such that $\nabla V : \mathbb{R}^n \to \mathbb{R}^n$ has no equilibria (i.e. $\forall x \in \mathbb{R}^n : \nabla V (x) \not = 0$). ...
19
votes
2answers
8k views

How to go about studying chaos theory/dynamical systems/fluid dynamics in grad school with a physics background?

I'm turning to you as I find myself in need of help as to how to best go about studying something related to chaos theory/dynamical systems/fluid dynamics in postgraduate school. I'm currently in my ...
18
votes
11answers
3k views

Mandelbrot-like sets for functions other than $f(z)=z^2+c$?

Are there any well-studied analogs to the Mandelbrot set using functions other than $f(z)= z^2+c$ in $\mathbb{C}$?
18
votes
4answers
851 views

What are the important theorems in the theory of dynamical systems?

I recently stumbled over the section about dynamical systems in my physics textbook. I noticed that, although most of the rest of the book was very rigorous, this part contained nearly no firm ...
18
votes
4answers
808 views

A Category Theoretical view of the Kalman Filter

Some basic background The Kalman filter is a (linear) state estimation algorithm that presumes that there is some sort of uncertainty (optimally Gaussian) in the state observations of the dynamical ...
17
votes
3answers
1k views

Are the fractional parts of $\log \log n!$ equidistributed or dense in $[0,1]$?

Are there any results relevant to the distribution of the sequence $\{\log \log n!\}$ for integers $n$, where $\{x\}$ denotes the fractional part of $x$? For instance, it is known that for irrational ...
17
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0answers
354 views

Notions of stability for differential equations

Consider a system of differential equations $$\dot{x} = f(x,u)$$ $$y = h(x,u)$$ where $x(t), u(t)$ are vectors in some $\mathbb{R}^n$. We define the infinity norm of a function in more-or-less in the ...
16
votes
2answers
340 views

Do any of these sequences have infinitely-many distinct iterates under run-length substitution?

Let $$S = \{x \in \{1,2\}^\mathbb{N}: \ \text{every run in }x\text{ has finite length}\}$$ and define $$T: S\to \mathbb{N}^\mathbb{N} $$ such that for any $x\in S$, ${T}x$ is the sequence of ...
16
votes
1answer
90 views

For what kind of infinite subset A of $\mathbb Z$ and irrational number $\alpha$, is $\{e^{k\alpha \pi i}: k\in A \}$ dense in $S^1 $?

There is a well-known result saying that $\{e^{k\alpha \pi i}: k\in \mathbb Z \}$ is dense in $S^1$. By density, we can select an infinite subset $A$ of $\mathbb Z$ such that $\{e^{k\alpha \pi i}: ...
14
votes
1answer
586 views

How to make a smart guess for this ODE

I am dealing with a strange problem currently, we have a differential equation $$y(x)^2 = \pm \sqrt{-A \cos(x) - B \cos^2(x)+y'(x)-C},$$ where $C, A$ and $B $ are parameters. (The case that either ...
14
votes
1answer
664 views

Kakutani skyscraper is infinite

Karl E. Petersen's book "Ergodic Theory", chapter 2, exercise 9, on page 56 Prove that for any ergodic measure preserving transformation $T:X\rightarrow X$ on a non-atomic probability space $(X, ...
13
votes
3answers
4k views

Recommendation for a book and other material on dynamical systems

I currently have the book Dynamical Systems with Applications Using Mathematica by Stephen Lynch. I used it in an undergrad introductory course for dynamical systems, but it's extremely terse. As an ...
13
votes
4answers
487 views

Why solutions of $y''+(w^2+b(t))y=0$ behave like solutions of $y''+w^2y=0$ at infinity

Assume $w>0$ and $b(t)$ be continuous on $[0,+\infty)$ and $\int_0^\infty |b(t)| dt <\infty$ show that $y''+(w^2+b(t))y=0$ has solution $\phi(t)$ such that $$\lim_{t\to\infty} ...
12
votes
2answers
800 views

Interesting but elementary properties of the Mandelbrot Set

I suppose everyone is familiar with the Mandelbrot set. I'm teaching a course right now in which I am trying to convey the beauty of some mathematical ideas to first year students. They basically know ...
12
votes
1answer
377 views

Limit cycle of dynamical system $x'=xy^2-x-y$, $y'=y^3+x-y$

Consider a planar ODE system $z'=f(z)$ with $z=(x,y)$, $$ f(x,y)=(xy^2-x-y,y^3+x-y). $$ Using polar coordinates, one can get $$ r'=r(r^2\sin^2\theta-1),\quad \theta'=1. $$ With Mathematica one can ...
12
votes
1answer
259 views

Equality by iteratively applying $(a,b)\rightarrow [(a+1,2b)\text{ or }(2a,b+1)]$?

I play a game starting with $2$ positive integers $a$ and $b$. At each step of the game I can double one of the integers and add $1$ to the other integer. Is there always a procedure for any ...
12
votes
1answer
138 views

Is the point promised by Borsuk-Ulam stable under perturbation of the map?

The Borsuk-Ulam theorem says that, given a continuous map $f: S^n \to \Bbb R^n$, there is some point $x \in S^n$ with $f(x)=f(-x)$. There may, of course, be many such points (maybe $f$ is constant!) ...
12
votes
2answers
296 views

How did Ulam and Neumann find this solution?

In the book "Chaos, Fractals and Noise - Stochastic Aspects of Dynamics" from Lasota and Mackey the operator $P: L^1[0,1] \to L^1[0,1]$ $$ (Pf)(x) = \frac{1}{4\sqrt{1-x}} \left[ ...
12
votes
2answers
172 views

What are Green's almost primes?

In a general-audience talk, Ben Green explains his famous proof with Terence Tao as an application of Szemerédi's theorem, but placing the primes within a smaller set of almost-primes in which they ...
11
votes
2answers
413 views

An equivalent condition for strong-mixing

For a measure-preserving (finite) system $(X,\mathcal{B},\mu,T)$, is it correct that the following are equivalent? For every $A,B\in\mathcal{B}$ , $\displaystyle\lim_{n\rightarrow\infty}\mu(A\cap ...
11
votes
1answer
637 views

Complicated exercise on ODE

I have this exercise extracted from a examination of qualitative theory of ODE (in which we study the existence and uniqueness of solutions, and stability using the function of Lyapunov) I don't know ...
10
votes
1answer
544 views

Starting digits of $2^n$.

Prove that for any finite sequence of decimal digits, there exists an $n$ such that the decimal expansion of $2^n$ begins with these digits.
10
votes
5answers
434 views

High-School Level Introduction to Dynamical Systems

In one month I'll be giving a talk to motivated high schools students on a topic of my choice from dynamical systems and/or ergodic theory. I'm having trouble coming up with a topic compelling enough ...
10
votes
1answer
290 views

Non-ergodic measure

Is there an easy way to see that if $\mu$ and $\nu$ are $T$-invariant measures on the same space $X$, and $\mu \neq \nu$, then $\frac{1}{2}(\mu+\nu)$ is NOT ergodic? I know that ergodic measures are ...
10
votes
2answers
166 views

How to know whether an Ordinary Differential Equation is Chaotic?

Assuming we have an ordinary differential equation (ODE) such as Lorenz system: $$ \dot x=\sigma(y-x)\\ \dot y=\gamma x-y-xz\\ \dot z=xy-bz $$ where $$ \sigma = 10\\ \gamma = 28\\ b = ...
10
votes
1answer
186 views

Is there any relationship between the Riemann z function and strange attractors?

I have this question in mind since the first time I saw a graphical representation of the zeta function (like in the sample below). Just by looking to them I wondered if there is any relationship ...
10
votes
1answer
578 views

Is a Markov process a random dynamic system?

A random dynamic system is defined in Wikipedia. Its definition, which is not included in this post for the sake of clarity, reminds me how similar a Markov process is to a random dynamic system just ...
10
votes
0answers
250 views

Intuition for the Yang-Baxter Equation (was: Giving relations via formal power series)

I'm reading a book (Yangians and Classical Lie Algebras by Molev) which regularly uses (what appear to me to be) clever tricks with formal power series to encapsulate lots of relations. For instance, ...
9
votes
1answer
332 views

The Mandelbrot Set Membership

To define the Mandelbrot Set we consider a sequence of complex numbers $z_0$, $z_1$, $z_2$, $z_3$, with the following conditions: $$ \begin{cases} z_{n+1} &= &z_n^2 + c &\text{ for }n\geq ...
9
votes
1answer
306 views

Bifurcations in the Duffing oscillator

I'm trying to describe all the bifurcations in the two parameter Duffing oscillator: $$\ddot{x} + ax + bx^3 = 0$$ In phase space with $y = \dot{x}$ I've found the origin to be a centre for $a>0$ ...
9
votes
3answers
575 views

Quadratic Julia sets and periodic cycles

Consider the function $f_c(z) = z^2 + c$. Applying this function repeatedly, we get the familiar quadratic Julia sets that fractal enthusiasts burn compute cycles plotting. Infinity is always one ...
9
votes
2answers
184 views

Is it possible to capture a light ray in a solar panel?

A while ago I was wondering how we could use mathematics to increase the efficiency of solar panels. The kind of mathematics I was thinking about in particular was Dynamical Billiards. Though I think ...
9
votes
3answers
324 views

Determining the maximum value for the solution of this delay differential equation?

I am working on the following delay differential equation $$\frac{df}{dt}=f-f^3-\alpha f(t-\delta)\tag{1},$$ where $\frac{1}{2}\leq\alpha\leq 1$ and $\delta\geq 1$. I know that there are three ...
9
votes
1answer
193 views

Fixed, attracting points are Fatou points

Let $f$ be a holomorphic function on an open, connected set $\Omega\subset \mathbb{C}$ with $z_0\in \Omega$ a fixed point, and $\{f^n\}_{n\in \mathbb{N}}$ the sequence of iterates. I want to prove ...
9
votes
1answer
92 views

Set of points dense in subset of four-dimensional space

We may assume the following theorem: Theorem: A real number $\lambda$ is irrational iff the set $\{m+\lambda n\mid m,n\in\mathbb{Z}\}$ is a dense subset of $\mathbb{R}$. Consider the following ...
9
votes
1answer
594 views

Number of limit points of a continued exponential

Inspired by the work of C. Bender, I recently played with continued exponentials (like continued fractions but with exponential functions ;) ). Given all prefactors are equal to 1, the continued ...
9
votes
0answers
60 views

Differential equations with dense solutions

Consider the differential equation $P(y',y'',y''',y'''')=0$ on $\mathbb R$, where $P(x,y,z,w)$ is the homogeneous polynomial of degree $7$ given by $$ ...
9
votes
0answers
180 views

Why use the Lefschetz Zeta function?

Given a compact, triangulable space $X$ and a continuous function $f: X\rightarrow X$, then we define the Lefschetz number $\Lambda_{f}$ by $$\Lambda_{f} = \sum_{k\geq0}(-1)^{k}Tr(f_{\ast}\vert ...
9
votes
2answers
163 views

Stability analysis for ODEs with non constant inputs

For a project, I have to deal with systems of ODE's with non constant input such as: $$\begin{cases}\dot x =I(t)x+x^2\\ \dot y=x\end{cases}$$ where I(t) is a random input (for example). In any case, ...
9
votes
0answers
284 views

The Stable Manifold Theorem Applications

Definition: Let $\phi_t(x)$ be the flow of the nonlinear system $x'=f(x)$. The global stable manifold of $x'=f(x)$ at $0$ is defined by: $$W^s(0)=\bigcup_{t\leq 0}\phi_t(S)$$ Where $S$ is a ...