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Chapter 5

Integrals
5.1 Areas and Distances
In this handout:
The Area problem
Area under a Parabola
Definition of the Area
The Distance problem
The Area Problem
Consider the problem of determining
the area of the domain bounded by
the graph of the function x
2
, the x-
axis, and the lines x=0 and x=1.
As the number n of
the approximating
rectangles grows,
the approximation
gets better.
We determine the area by approximating the domain with thin
rectangles for which the area can be directly computed. Letting these
rectangles get thinner, the approximation gets better and, at the limit,
we get the area of the domain in question.
1 0
y=x
2
2
1
1 1
The total area of the rectangles is .
n
n
k
k
s
n n
=

| | | |
=
| |
\ . \ .

Height of the k
th
rectangle.
Length of
the bottom.
Let A denote the actual area of the domain in
question. Clearly s
n
<A for all n.
2
2 2
The approximation uses rectangles of
1 1
height over the interval , .
Replace these rectangles with rectangles of height
1
to get the upper estimate
n
n
k
s
k k k
n n n
k k
S
n n n

| | (
|
(
\ .
| | | | | |
=
| | |
\ . \ . \ . 1
.
n
=

Lower
est. s
n
Upper
est. S
n
2 2
1 1
To compute the area we have now the estimates ,
1 1 1
i.e., .
n n
n n
n n
k k
A s A S
k k
s A S
n n n n
= =
< <

| | | | | | | |
= < < =
| | | |
\ . \ . \ . \ .

1
Observe that, in this case, 0.
Hence lim lim .
n n
n
n n
n n
S s
n
S s A

=
= =
2 3
2
1 1
To compute the limit observe that
1 1
.
n n
n
k k
k
S k
n n n
= =
| | | | | | | |
= =
| | | |
\ . \ . \ . \ .

This can be computed directly using a previously derived formula for
the sum of squares. Solution follows.
3 2
2
1
Recall that .
3 2 6
n
k
n n n
k
=
= + +

3
2
2
1
Hence
1 1 1 1 1
.
3 2 6 3
n
n n
k
S k
n n n

=
| | | |
= = + +
| |
\ . \ .

The blue area under the curve y=x

2
over the interval [0,1] equals 1/3.
1 0
y=x
2
Conclude
Definition of Area
Generalizing from the previous example, we have
the following definition.
The area A of the region S under the graph of the
continuous function f is the limit of the sum of
the areas of approximating rectangles:

Note that instead of using left endpoints or right
endpoints, we could take the height of the ith
rectangle to be the value of f at any number x
i
*
in
the subinterval [x
i-1
, x
i
].
That number is called a sample point.

=
A = A + + A + A =
n
i
i
n
n
n
x x f x x f x x f x x f A
1
2 1
) ( ] ) ( ... ) ( ) ( [
lim lim
0
1
2
3
1 2 3 4
time
velocity
After 4 seconds,
the object has
gone 12 feet.
Consider an object moving at a constant rate of 3 ft/sec.
Since rate
.
time = distance: 3t = d
If we draw a graph of the velocity, the distance that the
object travels is equal to the area under the line.
ft
3 4 sec 12 ft
sec
=

The Distance Problem

0
1
2
3
1 2 3 4
If the velocity is not constant,
we might guess that the
distance traveled is still equal
to the area under the curve.
2
1
1
8
V t = + Example:
We could estimate the area under the curve by
drawing rectangles touching at their left corners.
1
1
1
8
1
1
2
1
2
8
t
v
1 0
1
1
1
8
2
1
1
2
3
1
2
8
Approximate area:
1 1 1 3
1 1 1 2 5 5.75
8 2 8 4
+ + + = =

1
1
8
1
1
2
1
2
8
Approximate area:
1 1 1 3
1 1 2 3 7 7.75
8 2 8 4
+ + + = =
3
0
1
2
3
1 2 3 4
2
1
1
8
V t = +

We could also estimate the area under the curve

by drawing rectangles touching at their right
corners.
Another approach would be to use rectangles that touch at
the midpoint.
1.03125
1.28125
1.78125
Approximate area:
6.625
2.53125
t
v
1.03125 0.5
1.5 1.28125
2.5 1.78125
3.5 2.53125
0
1
2
3
1 2 3 4
In this example there are four
subintervals.
As the number of subintervals
increases, so does the accuracy.
2
1
1
8
V t = +

2
1
1
8
V t = +
Approximate area:
6.65624
t
v
1.00781 0.25
0.75 1.07031
1.25 1.19531
1.38281 1.75
2.25
2.75
3.25
3.75
1.63281
1.94531
2.32031
2.75781
13.31248 0.5 6.65624 =
width of subinterval
0
1
2
3
1 2 3 4
With 8 subintervals:
problem is . 6.6
Measuring the distance
In general, suppose an object moves with velocity
v=f(t), where a t b and f(t)0.
Take velocity readings at times t
0
(=a), t
1
, , t
n
(=b) so
that the velocity is approximately constant on each
subinterval.
The time between consecutive readings is t = (b-a)/n.
Then the exact distance d traveled is

=
A =
n
i
i
n
t t f d
1
) (
lim