Euler’s formula / Method Explained with Examples

Euler's formula

Euler`s technique is a first-order numerical method for fixing regular differential equations (ODE) with a given preliminary fee.

Euler`s technique is used for approximating answers to sure differential equations and works via way of means of approximating an answering curve with line segments. In the photo to the right, the blue circle is being approximated via way of means of the purple line segments.

In a few cases, it is now no longer viable to jot down down an equation for a curve, however, we will nevertheless locate approximate coordinates for factors alongside the curve via way of means of the use of easy lines. These line segments have an identical slope because of the curve so that they live extraordinarily near it.

Euler’s technique is beneficial due to the fact differential equations seem often in physics, chemistry, and economics, however typically can not be solved explicitly, requiring their answers to be approximated. For example, Euler’s technique may be used to approximate the route of an item falling via a viscous fluid, the charge of a response over time, the waft of site visitors on a hectic road, to call a few.

For a differential equation of the shape y’=f(x)y′

=f(x) wherein y(x_0)=y_0y(x0)=y  0, a series of factors x_n, y_nx n,yn

​pleasing x_=x_n+hx


n+h and y_=y_n+hf(x_n)y

n+1 =y

n + h f(xn ), wherein hh is the step length, may be used to approximate y(x)y(x) for a few xx. The concept is to pick hh, the step length so that one of the x_nx


​ might be the yy-fee to be estimated. For example, if x_0=1x

0 = 1 and the purpose is to estimate the fee at 5, one should pick h=1h=1 so x_5=x_0+4h=5x

5 =x0+4h=5.

The General Initial Value Problem


Euler`s technique makes use of the easy formula,

Euler's formula

to assemble the tangent on factor x and reap the fee of y(x+h), whose slope is,

Euler's formula

Euler's formula

In Euler`s technique, you may approximate the curve of the answer via way of means of the tangent in every c language (that is, via way of means of a series of quick line segments), at steps of h.

In general, in case you use a small step length, the accuracy of approximation increases.

 General Formula

Euler's formula

 Functional fee at any factor b, given via way of means of y(b)

Euler's formula


  •  n = range of steps
  • h = c language width (length of every step)


Euler's formula


Find y(1), given

eulers method

Solving analytically, the answer is y = ex and y(1)= 2.71828. (Note: This analytic answer is only for evaluating the accuracy.)

Using Euler`s technique, thinking about h = 0.2, 0.1, 0.01, you may see the outcomes withinside the diagram below.

When h = 0.2, y(1) = 2.48832 (error = 8.46 %)

When h = 0.1, y(1) = 2.59374 (error = 4.58 %)

When h = 0.01, y(1) = 2.70481 (error = 0.50 %)

You can notice, how accuracy improves whilst steps are small.

Suppose we’ve got a feature f(x)f(x), and we recognise the fee of ff at a factor x_0x0, and f'(x_0)f′(x0).

If we need to locate the fee of ff at a factor near xx, say x+hx+h, then we will approximate f(x+h)f(x+h) via way of means of the use of the tangent line to the graph on the factor big(x_0,f(x_0)big)(x0,f(x0)), as proven withinside the photo to the right. The concept is that f'(x_0)f′(x0) estimates how tons alternate there’s in yy for every alternate in xx; we recognise that xx extended via way of means of hh, so yy have to have extended via way of means of about h f'(x_0)hf′(x0), so the brand new fee have to be f(x_0)+hf'(x_0)f(x0)+hf′(x0).

Of course, as hh receives larger, our approximation will become much less and much less accurate. The concept in the back of Euler’s technique is to treat this via way of means of time and again the use of tangent line approximations; so, for example, to approximate f(x+3h)f(x+3h) via way of means of first approximating f(x+h)f(x+h), then f(x+2h)f(x+2h), after which f(x+3h)f(x+3h).

At every step, we use the slope of the curve to assemble the subsequent line segment, and this permits us to “follow” the curve with line segments, as proven withinside the photo to the right. This range hh is referred to as the step length, and measures how small the approximating segments are.

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Jeremmy Wade

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