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Introduction to the Calculus of Variations

Introduction to the Calculus of Variations
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The calculus of variations is one of the oldest subjects in mathematics, yet is very much alive and is still evolving. Besides its mathematical importance and its links to other branches of mathematics, such as geometry or differential equations, it is widely used in physics, engineering, economics and biology. This book serves both as a guide to the expansive existing literature and as an aid to the non-specialist — mathematicians, physicists, engineers, students or researchers — in discovering the subjects most important problems, results and techniques. Despite the aim of addressing non-specialists, mathematical rigor has not been sacrificed; most of the theorems are either fully proved or proved under more stringent conditions. The book, containing more than seventy exercises with detailed solutions, is well designed for a course both at the undergraduate and graduate levels.