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Need guidance on where to start on the study of the variational principle

  1. Mar 22, 2012 #1
    I was experimenting with some physics and the mathematics started to get a bit tougher than what I'm used to. I had a professor who looked at what I'm doing, offered to guide me, and told me to do some research on the variational principle.

    At the moment, I am in Calculus II. I did a couple searches, and the material I found is well beyond my knowledge at this moment. Can someone help direct me to a proper place to start on this study.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 23, 2012 #2

    AlephZero

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    This looks like a straightforward explanation (well, straightforward in the sense that it
    doesn't obscure things with "advanced" notation for no particular reason).
    http://www.math.umn.edu/~olver/am_/cvz.pdf

    If you don't understand this, first learn what you need from Calc 3 and/or ODEs.
     
  4. Mar 23, 2012 #3
    Yes there is a bunch of calculus 3 there that I see. Thanks for the link.
     
  5. Mar 24, 2012 #4
    Anyone else? I need a supplement.
     
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