# 2. Antiderivatives and The Indefinite Integral

by M. Bourne

### Mini-Lecture

See the

mini-lecture on differentials

We wish to perform the **opposite process** to
differentiation. This is called "antidifferentiation" and later, we will call it
"integration".

### Example 1

If we know that

`(dy)/(dx)=3x^2`

and we need to know the function this derivative came from, then we "undo" the differentiation process. (Think: "What would I have to differentiate to get this result?")

`y = x^3` is ONE antiderivative of `(dy)/(dx)=3x^2`

There are infinitely many other antiderivatives which would also work, for example:

`y = x^3+4`

`y = x^3+pi`

`y = x^3+27.3`

In general, we say `y =
x^3+K` is the
**indefinite integral** of `3x^2`. The number *K* is called the **constant of
integration**.

**Note:** Most math text books use `C` for the constant of integration, but for questions involving electrical engineering, we prefer to write "+*K*", since *C* is normally used for **capacitance** and it can get confusing.

## Notation for the Indefinite Integral

We write: `int3x^2dx=x^3+K` and say in words:

"The integral of 3*x*^{2} with respect to
*x* equals *x*^{3} + *K*."

### The Integral Sign

The `int` sign is an elongated "S",
standing for "sum". Later we will see that the integral is the
**sum** of the areas of infinitely thin rectangles.

Loading Flash movie...

### Other Notation for Integrals

**Note:** Sometimes we write a capital letter to signify integration. For example, we write *F*(*x*) to mean
the integral of *f*(*x*). So we have:

`F(x)=intf(x)dx`

### Example 2

Find `int(x^2-5)dx`

We now learn some important general rules for integration.

## A. Integral of a Constant

`intk\ dx=kx+K`

(`k` and `K` are constants.)

The integral of a constant is that constant times
*x*.

### Example 3

Find `int4\ dx`

## B. Integral of a Power of *x*

`intx^ndx=(x^(n+1))/(n+1)+K` (This is true as long as `n ≠ -1`)

For the integral of a power of *x*: add 1 to the power
and divide by the new number.

### Example 4

Integrate `intx^5 dx`

## The Constant of Integration

Don't forget the "+ *K*" (or, alternatively, "+ *C*"). This constant of integration is **vital** in later applications of the indefinite integral.

The next 2 examples use Flash to show the steps:

### Example 5: How to do basic integration

Loading Flash movie...

### Example 6

Loading Flash movie...

### Example 7

`int7x^6dx`

### Example 8

`int(3x^2+sqrtx-5/x^3)dx`

### Example 9

`introot(3)(x^2)dx`

### Example 10

A particular curve has its derivative given by `(dy)/(dx)=3x^2-2x`**. **

We are told that the curve passes through the point (2, 5). Find the equation of the curve.

### Example 11

Consider this integration:

`int(2x^4-5)^6x^3dx`

This is different to the other exercises above!

The expression we have to integrate containts `(2x^4-5)^6`, which is a
function of a function, **and** we have that `x^3` at the end. We cannot do this integration using the rules we have learned so far.

In this case, we have to do the reverse of
the Chain Rule, which we met in the section on **differentiation.**

We introduce a new rule for integrating cases like these.

## C. Power Formula for Integration

`int u^ndu=u^(n+1)/(n+1)+K`

(This is true if `n ≠ -1`)

### Mini-Lecture

See the

mini-lecture on substitution.

This requires a substitution step, where *u*(*x*) is some function of *x*.

Now back to the problem to see how to apply this formula.

Integrate `int(2x^4-5)^6x^3dx`.

Let's see how it works in Flash:

Loading Flash movie...

## More examples

### Example 12

`int(x^3-2)^6(3x^2)dx`

### Example 13

Find `intx/(sqrt(x^2+9))dx` using a substitution.

### Example 14

Given `y^'=sqrt(2x+1`, find the function `y = f(x)` which passes through the point `(0,2)`.

Note: You will see "+K" **and** "+C" in this work. Most
textbooks use + C.

It's a good idea to **always** use **+K** if you are answering electrical
problems.

Didn't find what you are looking for on this page? Try **search**:

### Online Algebra Solver

This algebra solver can solve a wide range of math problems. (Please be patient while it loads.)

Go to: Online algebra solver

### Ready for a break?

Play a math game.

(Well, not really a math game, but each game was made using math...)

### The IntMath Newsletter

Sign up for the free **IntMath Newsletter**. Get math study tips, information, news and updates each fortnight. Join thousands of satisfied students, teachers and parents!

### Share IntMath!

### Short URL for this Page

Save typing! You can use this URL to reach this page:

intmath.com/antiderivatives

### Calculus Lessons on DVD

Easy to understand calculus lessons on DVD. See samples before you commit.

More info: Calculus videos