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Applications of Taylor Series

Lecture Notes

These notes discuss three important applications of Taylor series:

1. Using Taylor series to find the sum of a series.

2. Using Taylor series to evaluate limits.

3. Using Taylor polynomials to approximate functions.

Evaluating Infinite Series

It is possible to use Taylor series to find the sums of many different infinite series. The following examples illustrate this idea.

EXAMPLE 1

SOLUTION

Find the sum of the following series:

_ "

" œ " 

8œ!

8x

"

"

#x

"x

Recall the Taylor series for / :

B

" 

"

"x

B 

"

#x

#

B 

"

$x

$

B 

"

$x

"

%x

"

%x

 â

%

B  â œ / B .

The sum of the given series can be obtained by substituting in B œ ":

"

"

"

"

" 

"x

#x

$x

%x

 â œ / .

è

In the above example, note that we get a different series for every value of B that we plug in. For example,

and

" 

"

"x

" 

"

#x

#

"

$x

"x

#

#

"

%x

#x

#

$

$x

#

%

%x

⠜ / # .

 â œ

" a

8œ!

_

"

b

8x

8

œ /

"

œ

"

/

.

EXAMPLE 2

Find the sums of the following series:

 

"

"

"

"

(a)

" 

 

SOLUTION

#

$

%

&

 â.

(a)

Recall that

 
 

B

B

B

 

B 

Substituting in B œ " yields

#

$

%

 

"

"

"

 

" 

#

$

%

(b)

Recall that

 
 

B

B

B

 

B 

Substituting in B œ " yields

$

&

(

 

"

"

"

"

 

" 

$

&

(

*

(b)

" 

"

$

"

&

B

&

"

&

⠜

lna

"B

 â œ

lna

#

b.

b.

B

*

⠜

tan " a

 â œ

tan " a

"

b

B

b.

œ

"

(

1 .

%

"

*

 â

This is known as the Gregory-Leibniz formula for 1.

Limits Using Power Series

è

When taking a limit as B Ä !, you can often simplify things by substituting in a power series that you know.

EXAMPLE 3

SOLUTION

Evaluate lim

BÄ!

sin BB

B

$ .

We simply plug in the Taylor series for sin B:

lim

BÄ!

sin BB

B

$

œ

lim

BÄ!

œ lim

BÄ!

œ

lim

BÄ!

Œ

 

"

"

"

B 

$x

$

B 

 

&x

&

B 

 

(x

(

B  â

B

 

B

$

 

"

"

 

"

$

B 

 

&

B 

(

B  â

 
 

$x

&x

 

(x

 

B

$

 

"

"

"

"

#

B 

 

%

B  â œ 

œ 

 

$x

&x

(x

 

$x

"

'

è

EXAMPLE 4

SOLUTION

# B

Evaluate BÄ! lim cos B B" /

.

We simply plug in the Taylor series for /

B

and

cos

B:

lim

BÄ!

# B

B / cos B" œ

œ

lim

BÄ!

lim

BÄ!

B

#

Œ

"

"B B â

#

#

Œ

"

"

"

"

#

#

B 

$

#

%

B 

%x

%

"

'x

B â

'

B B 

#

B â

"

 " # B 

#

"

%x

%

B 

"

'x

'

B â

œ

lim

BÄ!

"

"B B â

#

#

"

#

"

#%

%

B 

"

'x

#

B â

œ

"

"Î#

œ #

è

Sometimes a limit will involve a more complicated function, and you must determine the Taylor series:

EXAMPLE 5

SOLUTION

lnacos Bb are:

Evaluate lim

BÄ!

ln a cos

Bb

B

# .

Using the Taylor series formula, the first few terms of the Taylor series for

lnacos Bb œ  " # B 

#

"

"#

%

B  â .

(Really, we only need that first term.) Therefore,

lim

BÄ!

a

ln cos

Bb

B

#

œ

lim

BÄ!

"

 # B 

#

"

"#

%

B â

B

#

œ

lim

BÄ!

"

#

"

"#

#

B â œ 

"

#

è

Limits as B Ä + can be obtained using a Taylor series centered at B œ +:

EXAMPLE 6

SOLUTION

Evaluate lim

BÄ"

Recall that

ln B

.

B"

ln B œ

a

b

B  " 

"

#

a

B  "

b

#

"

$

a

B  "

b

$

 â

Plugging this in gives

lim

BÄ"

ln B

B"

œ

œ

Taylor Polynomials

lim

BÄ"

lim

BÄ"

 

"

#

 

"

$

 

a

b

B" 

 

a

B"

b

a

B"

b

 â

#

$

 
 

B"

 

Œ

"

"

#

a

b

B" 

"

$

a

b

#

B" â

œ "

è

A partial sum of a Taylor series is called a Taylor polynomial. For example, the Taylor polynomials for / are:

B

X

!

X

"

X

#

X

$

a

a

a

B

B

B

b

b

b

œ "

œ

"  B

œ "  B 

a B b œ "  B 

ã

"

#

"

#

B

#

#

B 

"

'

B

$

You can approximate any function 0 aBb by its Taylor polynomial:

0aBb ¸ X aBb

8

If you use the Taylor polynomial centered at +, then the approximation will be particularly good near B œ +.

TAYLOR POLYNOMIALS Let 0 aBb be a function. The Taylor polynomials for 0 aBb centered
TAYLOR POLYNOMIALS
Let 0 aBb be a function. The Taylor polynomials for 0 aBb centered at B œ + are:
X
a œ 0 +
B
b
a
b
!
w
X
a œ
B
b
0
a
+
b
 0
a ba
+
B+
b
"
X
a œ 0 +  0 + B+ 
B
#
#x
ã
You can approximate 0 aBb using a Taylor polynomial.

b

a

b

w

a ba

b

0 a + b

ww

a

B+

b

#

Note that the 1st-degree Taylor polynomial is just the tangent line to 0 aBb at B œ +:

X

"

a

B

b

a

œ 0 +

b

 0 +

w

a ba

B+

b

This is often called the linear approximation to 0 aBb near B œ +, i.e. the tangent line to the graph. Taylor polynomials can be viewed as a generalization of linear approximations. In particular, the 2nd-degree Taylor polynomial is sometimes called the quadratic approximation, the 3rd-degree Taylor polynomial is the cubic approximation, and so on.

EXAMPLE 7

(a) Find the 5th-degree Taylor polynomial for sin B. (b) Use the answer from part
(a)
Find the 5th-degree Taylor polynomial for sin B.
(b)
Use the answer from part (a) to approximate sina!Þ$b.
SOLUTION
&
(a)
This is just all term terms of the Taylor series up to B :
"
"
"
"
$
&
$
&
X & a
B
b
œ
B 
B 
B
œ
B 
B 
B
$x
&x
'
"#!
"
"
$
&
(b)
sina!Þ$b ¸
X a!Þ$b œ
a!Þ$b 
a!Þ$b 
a!Þ$b œ !Þ#*& &#! #&
è
&
'
"#!
EXERCISES
"
cos
B
ln
B
1–2 ç Find the sum of the given series.
11. lim
12. lim
#
BÄ 1
È
aB b
1
BÄ"
B"
"
"
"
1.
" 
 â
$x
&x
(x
13. Find the 3rd-degree Taylor polynomial for the function
(a)
0 aBb œ ln B centered at + œ ".
#
%
'
1
1
1
2.
" 
 â
(b)
Use your answer from part (a) to approximate lna"Þ"&b.
#x
%x
'x
B
3–12 ç Evaluate the following limits.
14. Find the 4th-degree Taylor polynomial for /
(a)
.
!Þ$
(b)
Use your answer from part (a) to approximate /
.
cos B"
B
3.
lim
4. lim
BÄ!
B
#
BÄ!
/
$B
"
15. Find the quadratic approximation for the function
(a)
#
ln a
"B
b
B
0aBbœB
$Î# centered at
+œ%
.
5.
lim
6. lim
$Î#
"
BÄ!
B
#
BÄ!
tan
a
%B
b
(b)
Use your answer from part (a) to approximate a%Þ#b .
"
#
sin a%Bb
cos B" B
16. Find
(a)
the
quadratic
approximation
for
the
function
#
7.
lim
8. lim
BÄ!
B
BÄ!
B
%
0aBbœ B
È $
centered at
+œ)
.
È $
#B
"
(b)
Use your answer from part (a) to approximate
)Þ'
.
/
"
tan
a
B B
b
9.
lim
10. lim
BÄ!
sin
B
BÄ!
sin a
B B
b