Can L'Hopital's Rule Be Used for Limits to Infinity?

In summary, L'Hopital's rule is a mathematical technique used to evaluate limits of functions that may result in indeterminate forms. It works by taking the limit of the ratio of two functions and equating it to the limit of their derivatives. This rule should only be used when traditional methods fail and has limitations, such as being applicable only to differentiable functions and finite or infinite limits. To use it correctly, one must identify an indeterminate form and take the derivative of both functions. It cannot be used for limits of sequences.
  • #1
Lucy Yeats
117
0
I understand the use of this rule for the limit as x goes to 0, but not for the limit as x goes to infinity. Can this rule be used to find limits to infinity? How?

I have googled this but couldn't find a good explanation.
 
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  • #2
You can substitute u =1/x, and find the limit as u goes to 0.
 
  • #3
Thanks!
 

1. What is L'Hopital's rule and how does it work?

L'Hopital's rule is a mathematical technique used to evaluate limits of functions that may be indeterminate forms, such as 0/0 or ∞/∞. It states that the limit of the ratio of two functions is equal to the limit of their derivatives, as long as the limit of the derivatives exists. This rule is useful when traditional methods of evaluating limits, such as direct substitution, do not work.

2. When should L'Hopital's rule be used?

L'Hopital's rule should be used when trying to evaluate a limit of a function that results in an indeterminate form, such as 0/0 or ∞/∞. This rule can also be used when trying to evaluate a limit at infinity, as it can often simplify the calculation. However, it is important to note that L'Hopital's rule should not be used as a first resort and should only be used when traditional methods fail.

3. What are the limitations of L'Hopital's rule?

L'Hopital's rule is only applicable to functions that are differentiable in the neighborhood of the limit point and result in indeterminate forms. It also only applies to limits at finite values or infinity, and cannot be used for limits that approach complex numbers or oscillate between two values. Additionally, L'Hopital's rule can only be applied a limited number of times and may not always yield a solution.

4. How do I know if I am using L'Hopital's rule correctly?

To use L'Hopital's rule correctly, you must first identify an indeterminate form in the limit. Then, take the derivative of both the numerator and denominator of the fraction and evaluate the limit again. If the new limit still results in an indeterminate form, repeat the process until the limit can be evaluated. It is also important to check that the original functions are differentiable in the neighborhood of the limit point.

5. Can L'Hopital's rule be used for limits of sequences?

No, L'Hopital's rule cannot be used for limits of sequences as it is only applicable to limits of functions. To evaluate limits of sequences, other techniques such as the squeeze theorem or using the definition of a limit must be used.

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