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Understanding PDEs Intuitively

  1. May 6, 2012 #1

    I am looking for a good book on PDEs. By good, I mean geometrically intuitive. Something like H M Schey's book on vector calculus.

    I know a bit about solving PDEs, I know they are elliptic, hyperbolic or parabolic, characteristic equation defines the type & thats just about it. What I am trying to understand is, what is PDE when it is elliptic or hyperbolic or parabolic. How does it behave geometrically. For example, for a hyperbolic equation, characteristic equation defines a curve or a surface or something across which functions do not relate.

    Right now, I have this book. I heard text by Arnold Vladamir & I G Petrovsky are good. Reviews?

  2. jcsd
  3. May 8, 2012 #2
    No body is doing PDEs? :(
  4. May 12, 2012 #3


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    Homework Helper

    I'm not familiar with those, but I can recommend Applied Partial Differential Equations by Ockendon et al (Oxford University Press, revised edition 2003). It's not in the same style as Schey but its focus is on understanding PDEs which arise in practical applications rather than on abstract rigourous analysis.

    I can also suggest Analytic Methods for Partial Differential Equations by Evans et al (Springer Undergraduate Mathematics Series, 1999).
  5. May 12, 2012 #4


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    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    If one had bothered to look around PF, one would have found the Math & Science Learning Materials section in which one would find Calculus & Beyond Learning Materials in which one would find a thread:
    Partial Differential Equations

    There are many online resources of course lectures/notes on the subject, and in some cases, on-line text books.
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