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11.

4: The Comparison Test


Wednesday, February 25

Speed Round
1. lim ln(n)3 /n = 0 x3 x5
n 8. sin(x) = x + ...
3! 5!
2. lim 1.04n /n2 = x2 x4
n 9. cos(x) = 1 + ...
2! 4!
3. lim en / ln(n) =
n X 1
10. 1/3n = = 3/2
2
4. lim sin(n )/ ln(n) = 0 n=0
1 1/3
n
 
n100 e4n
X
n 1
5. lim =0 11. 5/4 = 5 = 20/3
n n! n=0
1 1/4

n2 2n X 12
6. lim
n 3n
=0 12. 3 2n+1 /5n = (1 + 2/5 + . . .) =
n=1
5

x2 x3 12 1
7. ex = 1 + x + + + ... =4
2! 3! 5 1 2/5

Determine whether the following series are convergent or divergent:



X X X 1
1. 0.8n converges 4. sin(n) diverges 7. converges
n=1 n=1 n=1
n2

X n+1
X
n 5. diverges X 1
2. (1/2) converges n+2 8. 1/2
diverges
n=1
n=1
n=1
n
(limn an 6= 0)

X X 1 X 1
3. (1.3)n diverges 6. diverges 9. converges
n=1 n=1
n n=1
n1.001

The Limit Comparison Test


P P an
1. P
Suppose that
P an , bn are series with positive terms. If limn bn = C for some 0 < C < , then
an and bn either both converge or both diverge.
2. If limn abnn = 0 and
P P
bn converges, then an converges.
3. If limn abnn = and
P P
bn diverges, then an diverges.

n2 +ln(n)3 n2 1
Example: If an = n4 +sin(n) , then let bn = n4 = n2 . Then

an (n2 + ln(n)3 )n2 1 + ln(n)3 /n2


lim
= lim = lim = 1,
n bn n n4 + sin(n) n 1 + sin(n)/n2

P P
so an converges because bn converges.

1

X 1 X 2n + ln n
1. n+1
converges (bn = 1/2n ) 6. n
converges (bn = (2/3)n )
n=1
2 n=1
n + 3

X n3
2. diverges (bn = 1/n)
n4 + 3 X 1
n=1 7. 2
converges (bn = 1/n2 )
n=1
1 + ln n + n
X n + sin n
3. 3 + ln n
converges (bn = 1/n2 )
n=1
n
X n2 + n2 + 1
8. diverges (bn = 1/n)
X 3 n + n3 n3 + n3 + 1
4. 4 + ln n + 4n
converges (bn = (3/4)n ) n=1
n=1
n

X n2 + 1 X en n
5. converges (bn = 1/n3/2 ) 9. n+n
diverges (bn = (e/2)n )
n=1
3 + n 7
n=1
2

Different Growth Levels in the Numerator and Denominator


Good news: The dominant term is still the only thing that matters! Heres why, in a nutshell:
1. ln(n)K < n (for large n, given any K,  > 0).
2. nK < (1 + )n (for large n, given any K,  > 0).
P ln5 (n)
Example: Looking at n2 , we know that ln5 (n) < n for large values of n (in particular, when

n > 3.44 1015 ), so we can choose bn = n2n = n3/2
1
. Then

ln5 (n)n3/2 ln5 (n)


lim an /bn = lim = lim = 0.
n n n2 n n
P ln5 (n)
1/n3/2 converges,P
P
Since so does n2 .
Example 2: Looking at n2 /2n , we know that n2 < 1.5n for large
P values of n (when n 13),Pso2choose
bn = 1.5n /2n . Then limn an /bn = limn n2 /1.5n = 0. Since 1.5n /2n converges, so does n /2n .

Find an appropriate series bn to compare each of the following series to, and determine whether they converge
or diverge:

X 1 X n
1. diverges (bn = 1/n) 4. n
converges (bn = 1.01n /1.02n )
n=2
ln n n=1
1.02

X ln n + sin n X n2 2n
2. 2
converges (bn = n/n2 ) 5. n
converges (bn = 2.1n /3n )
n=1
n n=1
1 + 3

X n3 X n ln n
3. n
converges (bn = 2n /3n ) 6. diverges (bn = 1/ n)
n=1
3 n=1
3
n +2

Warning!
If terms in the numerator or denominator are cancelling out with each other, watch out! You might have to
do some extra algebra before using the comparison test. Try to show that the following series converge:

2

X n2 + 1 n
1. converges (bn = 1/n2 )
n=1
n

n2 + 1 n 2 n2 + 1 n n2 + 1 + n 2
lim (n ) = lim (n )
n n n n n2 + 1 + n

X n
=
2
( n + 1 + n)
n=1
= 1/2

X ln(n + 1) ln(n)
2. converges (bn = 1/n2 , use LHospital to verify)
n=1
n

ln(n + 1) ln(n) 2
lim (n ) = lim n ln(1 + 1/n)
n n n
=1


X e1/n 1
3. converges (bn = 1/n2 , use LHospital)
n=1
n

e1/n 1 2 e1/n 1
lim (n ) = lim
n n n 1/n
1/n2 e1/n
= lim
n 1/n2
= lim e1/n
n
=1

X 1 1
4. converges (bn = 1/n2 )
n=1
n n +

1 1 n2 + n n2
lim ( )(n2 ) = lim
n n n+ n n + n+
n
= lim
n n +

Bonus
1. Show that 1 + 1/1! + 1/2! + 1/3! + . . . converges. (Hint: 3 2 > 2 2, 4 3 2 > 2 2 2 . . .)
P P
Limit comparison with bn = 1/2n : limn 2n /n! = 0, so n=0 1/n! converges because n=0 1/2n
converges.

X xn
2. For what values of x does the series converge?
n=0
n!
All values of x. (Limit comparison with bn = 1/2n will again work)
1
3. If we integrate both sides of 1x = 1 + x + x2 + x3 + . . ., we get ln(1 x) = x + x2 /2 + x3 /3 + . . .
(this actually works!) For what values of x does the series representing ln(1 x) converge?
The series converges for 1 x < 1.