The image above represents the phase plane trajectories of solutions to a second-order ODE (the Van der Pol equation) which models the current through a nonlinear resistor in an RLC circuit. Trajectories both outside and inside of the red curve approach it asymptotically as t approaches infinity. This curve is called a limit cycle and represents a periodic solution to the ODE.

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George Mason University

Math 214-001 Fall Term 2014

Elementary Differential Equations

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