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Values of 2 x For a list of rational numbers approximating 2
x 1.4 1.41 1.414 1.4142 1.41421 1.414213
2 x 2.639 2.65737 2.66475 2.665119 2.665138 2.665143

Bacterial growth

Suppose a particular population of bacteria is known to double in size every 4 hours. If a culture starts with 1000 bacteria, the number of bacteria after 4 hours is n ( 4 ) = 1000 · 2 . The number of bacteria after 8 hours is n ( 8 ) = n ( 4 ) · 2 = 1000 · 2 2 . In general, the number of bacteria after 4 m hours is n ( 4 m ) = 1000 · 2 m . Letting t = 4 m , we see that the number of bacteria after t hours is n ( t ) = 1000 · 2 t / 4 . Find the number of bacteria after 6 hours, 10 hours, and 24 hours.

The number of bacteria after 6 hours is given by n ( 6 ) = 1000 · 2 6 / 4 2828 bacteria. The number of bacteria after 10 hours is given by n ( 10 ) = 1000 · 2 10 / 4 5657 bacteria. The number of bacteria after 24 hours is given by n ( 24 ) = 1000 · 2 6 = 64,000 bacteria.

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Given the exponential function f ( x ) = 100 · 3 x / 2 , evaluate f ( 4 ) and f ( 10 ) .

f ( 4 ) = 900 ; f ( 10 ) = 24 , 300 .

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Go to World Population Balance for another example of exponential population growth.

Graphing exponential functions

For any base b > 0 , b 1 , the exponential function f ( x ) = b x is defined for all real numbers x and b x > 0 . Therefore, the domain of f ( x ) = b x is ( , ) and the range is ( 0 , ) . To graph b x , we note that for b > 1 , b x is increasing on ( , ) and b x as x , whereas b x 0 as x . On the other hand, if 0 < b < 1 , f ( x ) = b x is decreasing on ( , ) and b x 0 as x whereas b x as x ( [link] ).

An image of a graph. The x axis runs from -3 to 3 and the y axis runs from 0 to 4. The graph is of four functions. The first function is “f(x) = 2 to the power of x”, an increasing curved function, which starts slightly above the x axis and begins increasing. The second function is “f(x) = 4 to the power of x”, an increasing curved function, which starts slightly above the x axis and begins increasing rapidly, more rapidly than the first function. The third function is “f(x) = (1/2) to the power of x”, a decreasing curved function with decreases until it gets close to the x axis without touching it. The third function is “f(x) = (1/4) to the power of x”, a decreasing curved function with decreases until it gets close to the x axis without touching it. It decrases at a faster rate than the third function.
If b > 1 , then b x is increasing on ( , ) . If 0 < b < 1 , then b x is decreasing on ( , ) .

Visit this site for more exploration of the graphs of exponential functions.

Note that exponential functions satisfy the general laws of exponents. To remind you of these laws, we state them as rules.

Rule: laws of exponents

For any constants a > 0 , b > 0 , and for all x and y ,

  1. b x · b y = b x + y
  2. b x b y = b x y
  3. ( b x ) y = b x y
  4. ( a b ) x = a x b x
  5. a x b x = ( a b ) x

Using the laws of exponents

Use the laws of exponents to simplify each of the following expressions.

  1. ( 2 x 2 / 3 ) 3 ( 4 x −1 / 3 ) 2
  2. ( x 3 y −1 ) 2 ( x y 2 ) −2
  1. We can simplify as follows:
    ( 2 x 2 / 3 ) 3 ( 4 x −1 / 3 ) 2 = 2 3 ( x 2 / 3 ) 3 4 2 ( x −1 / 3 ) 2 = 8 x 2 16 x −2 / 3 = x 2 x 2 / 3 2 = x 8 / 3 2 .
  2. We can simplify as follows:
    ( x 3 y −1 ) 2 ( x y 2 ) −2 = ( x 3 ) 2 ( y −1 ) 2 x −2 ( y 2 ) −2 = x 6 y −2 x −2 y −4 = x 6 x 2 y −2 y 4 = x 8 y 2 .
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Use the laws of exponents to simplify ( 6 x −3 y 2 ) / ( 12 x −4 y 5 ) .

x / ( 2 y 3 )

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The number e

A special type of exponential function appears frequently in real-world applications. To describe it, consider the following example of exponential growth, which arises from compounding interest in a savings account. Suppose a person invests P dollars in a savings account with an annual interest rate r , compounded annually. The amount of money after 1 year is

A ( 1 ) = P + r P = P ( 1 + r ) .

The amount of money after 2 years is

A ( 2 ) = A ( 1 ) + r A ( 1 ) = P ( 1 + r ) + r P ( 1 + r ) = P ( 1 + r ) 2 .

More generally, the amount after t years is

A ( t ) = P ( 1 + r ) t .

If the money is compounded 2 times per year, the amount of money after half a year is

A ( 1 2 ) = P + ( r 2 ) P = P ( 1 + ( r 2 ) ) .

The amount of money after 1 year is

A ( 1 ) = A ( 1 2 ) + ( r 2 ) A ( 1 2 ) = P ( 1 + r 2 ) + r 2 ( P ( 1 + r 2 ) ) = P ( 1 + r 2 ) 2 .

After t years, the amount of money in the account is

A ( t ) = P ( 1 + r 2 ) 2 t .

More generally, if the money is compounded n times per year, the amount of money in the account after t years is given by the function

Questions & Answers

what is a maximax
Chinye Reply
A maxima in a curve refers to the maximum point said curve. The maxima is a point where the gradient of the curve is equal to 0 (dy/dx = 0) and its second derivative value is a negative (d²y/dx² = -ve).
Viewer
what is the limit of x^2+x when x approaches 0
Dike Reply
it is 0 because 0 squared Is 0
Leo
0+0=0
Leo
simply put the value of 0 in places of x.....
Tonu
find derivatives 3√x²+√3x²
Care Reply
3 + 3=6
mujahid
How to do basic integrals
dondi Reply
write something lmit
ram Reply
find the integral of tan tanxdx
Lateef Reply
-ln|cosx| + C
Jug
discuss continuity of x-[x] at [ _1 1]
Atshdr Reply
Given that u = tan–¹(y/x), show that d²u/dx² + d²u/dy²=0
Collince Reply
find the limiting value of 5n-3÷2n-7
Joy Reply
Use the first principal to solve the following questions 5x-1
Cecilia Reply
175000/9*100-100+164294/9*100-100*4
Ibrahim Reply
mode of (x+4) is equal to 10..graph it how?
Sunny Reply
66
ram
6
ram
6
Cajab
what is domain in calculus
nelson
integrals of 1/6-6x-5x²
Namwandi Reply
derivative of (-x^3+1)%x^2
Misha Reply
(-x^5+x^2)/100
Sarada
(-5x^4+2x)/100
Sarada
oh sorry it's (-x^3+1)÷x^2
Misha
-5x^4+2x
Sarada
sorry I didn't understan A with that symbol
Sarada
find the derivative of the following y=4^e5x y=Cos^2 y=x^inx , x>0 y= 1+x^2/1-x^2 y=Sin ^2 3x + Cos^2 3x please guys I need answer and solutions
Ga Reply
differentiate y=(3x-2)^2(2x^2+5) and simplify the result
Ga
72x³-72x²+106x-60
okhiria
y= (2x^2+5)(3x+9)^2
lemmor
Practice Key Terms 7

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Source:  OpenStax, Calculus volume 1. OpenStax CNX. Feb 05, 2016 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11964/1.2
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