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How do you isolate for y when 0 = 2y + e^y

  1. Sep 12, 2013 #1
    How do you isolate for y when you have the equation 0 = 2y + e^y - 4x + 3?

    Any tips, useful links or solutions and an explanation would be greatly appreciated!

  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 12, 2013 #2
    Numerics seems to be the only way. Usually when you have to isolate a variable that's acted on by different types of functions, it's very difficult or impossible to do analytically.
  4. Sep 12, 2013 #3
  5. Sep 12, 2013 #4

  6. Sep 12, 2013 #5
    In a lot of situations, it's not necessary to get analytic solutions. What is this for?
  7. Sep 13, 2013 #6


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    The "Wolfram Alpha" solution that johnqwertyful links to use the "Lambert W function" which is defined as the inverse function to [itex]f(x)= xe^x[/itex]. It cannot be written in terms of any simpler function.
  8. Sep 13, 2013 #7
    Well, when we have these mixed exponential equations, we try to put it in Lambert-W form. That is, in the form:


    Then by definition of the Lambert W function which you can look up, we take the W function of both sides and obtain:


    Now, doing a little moving around of your equation:

    [tex]1/2 e^y=2x-3/2-y[/tex]
    [tex]1/2 e^{2x-3/2}=e^{-y} e^{2x-3/2}(2x-3/2-y)[/tex]


    [tex](2x-3/2-y)e^{2x-3/2-y}=1/2 e^{2/x-3/2}[/tex]

    I'll let you finish it to isolate y in terms of the perfectly valid (multi-valued) function of x in terms of the Lambert W-function.
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2013
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