# Ordinary or partial differential equation

## Homework Statement

x(d^2y/dx^2)+dx/dt+xy=0

## The Attempt at a Solution

At first I thought it was an ODE, but then I found out the derivative was respect to to variables x and t.
I am not sure if it is an ODE or PDE. What are the dependent and independent variables in the equation? Is it linear?

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Simon Bridge
Homework Helper
Written like this: $$x\frac{d^2}{dx^2}y + \frac{d}{dt}x + xy = 0$$... then we can conclude that y is a function of x and x is a function of t. i.e. ##y(t)=y\big(x(t)\big)## is the solution.
This happens a lot in physics where you happen to know dx/dt by some other means.

If it were a partial DE then you'd expect to see dy/dx and dy/dt - telling up that y is a function of both x and t separately and we can write y as y(x,t).

Where did you find this equation, in what context?

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• MarkZone
Written like this: $$x\frac{d^2}{dx^2}y + \frac{d}{dt}x + xy = 0$$... then we can conclude that y is a function of x and x is a function of t. i.e. ##y(t)=y\big(x(t)\big)## is the solution.
This happens a lot in physics where you happen to know dx/dt by some other means.

If it were a partial DE then you'd expect to see dy/dx and dy/dt - telling up that y is a function of both x and t separately and we can write y as y(x,t).

Where did you find this equation, in what context?
Sorry for late response. The differential equation is the stress analysis of aerodynamics. I wonder if it is a partial or ordinary differential equation.

Simon Bridge
Homework Helper
If y is a function of both x and t, separately, then it is partial - otherwise it isn't.
What physical quantities do x y and t represent?

If y is a function of both x and t, separately, then it is partial - otherwise it isn't.
What physical quantities do x y and t represent?
I really don't know. It is a math problem without any further context.

Simon Bridge
Homework Helper
You just said it was to do with stress analysis in an airframe. Does airframe stress not have any physical quantities to measure that have relationships to each other?

Whatever - without any further context, the answer is the same as post #2 ... it is an ordinary DE where y is a function of x and x is a function of t. You could reconstruct the whole thing in terms of t by using the chain rule.

You just said it was to do with stress analysis in an airframe. Does airframe stress not have any physical quantities to measure that have relationships to each other?

Whatever - without any further context, the answer is the same as post #2 ... it is an ordinary DE where y is a function of x and x is a function of t. You could reconstruct the whole thing in terms of t by using the chain rule.
Thank you very much!

HallsofIvy