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I was trying to find a closed form of $$ f(x) = x^3\sum_{k=0}^{\infty} \frac{(-x^4)^k}{(4k+3)(2k+1)!} $$

$f(x)$ converges for all $x$ by the ratio test.

I began by making the it look like a power series and then differentiating $$ f(x) = \sum_{k=0}^{\infty} \frac{(-1)^kx^{4k+3}}{(4k+3)(2k+1)!} $$

$$\frac{\partial f}{\partial x} = \frac{\partial}{\partial x} \sum_{k=0}^{\infty} \frac{(-1)^kx^{4k+3}}{(4k+3)(2k+1)!} $$

$$ \frac{\partial f}{\partial x} = \sum_{k=0}^{\infty} \frac{(-1)^kx^{4k+2}}{(2k+1)!} = \sum_{k=0}^{\infty} \frac{(-1)^k(x^2)^{2k+1}}{(2k+1)!} $$

$$ \frac{\partial f}{\partial x} = \sin(x^2) $$

$$f(x) = c + \int \sin x^2 \mathrm{d}x $$

Is this correct? Can it be solved simpler than this? Can this result be simplified further? I'm not sure how to take the integral of $\sin x^2 $.

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  • $\begingroup$ I changed the $(4k+4)$ to $(4k+3)$ in title. $\endgroup$ Mar 14 '17 at 4:00
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Initial condition of $f(0)=0$ gives $c=0$. The rest may be done with the complex definition of sine and the error function:

$$f(x)=\int_0^x\sin(t^2)\ dt=\int_0^x\frac{e^{it^2}-e^{-it^2}}{2i}\ dt=\frac{\sqrt\pi}4\left(e^{-5\pi i/8}\operatorname{erf}(e^{3\pi i/8}x)+e^{3\pi i/8}\operatorname{erf}(e^{\pi i/8}x)\right)$$

which is honestly a horrible expression.

An alternative expression:

$$f(x)=\Im\int_0^xe^{it^2}\ dt=\Im\left(\frac{\sqrt\pi}2e^{\pi i/8}\operatorname{erf}(e^{-\pi i/8}x)\right)$$

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  • $\begingroup$ I agree, that's a horrid looking expression. $\endgroup$
    – Dando18
    Mar 14 '17 at 2:00
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$\sin x^2$ is one of those functions whose primitive can not be expressed in terms of elementary functions. Nevertheless, your idea is correct. You can improve your answer by writing

$$f(x) = f(0) + \int_0^x \sin t^2 dt = \int_0^x \sin t^2 dt,$$

as $f(0) =0$.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks! Could you link a source why or how $\int\sin x^2 dx$ does not have a solution in terms of elementary functions? I'm simply curious now :) $\endgroup$
    – Dando18
    Mar 14 '17 at 1:54
  • $\begingroup$ Here en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fresnel_integral you can find a bunch of related infos ^^ $\endgroup$
    – Stefano
    Mar 14 '17 at 2:16

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