# How do I solve a nonlinear equation that needs to be setup – Updated to MATLAB 2018b

Guest co-blogger: Luis Serrano

Many students ask me how do I do this or that in MATLAB. So I thought why not have a small series of my next few blogs do that. In this blog, I show you how to solve a nonlinear equation that needs to be set up.

For example to find the depth ‘x’ to which a ball is floating in water is based on the following cubic equation
4*R^3*S=3*x^2*(R-x/3)
where
S= specific gravity of ball
So how do we set this up if S and R are input values?

The MATLAB program link is here.

The HTML version of the MATLAB program is here.

• DO NOT COPY AND PASTE THE PROGRAM BELOW BECAUSE THE SINGLE QUOTES DO NOT TRANSLATE TO THE CORRECT SINGLE QUOTES IN MATLAB EDITOR.  DOWNLOAD THE MATLAB PROGRAM INSTEAD

%% SUMMARY
% Language : Matlab 2018b;
% Authors : Autar Kaw and Luis Serrano;
% Mfile available at
% http://nm.mathforcollege.com/blog/NonlinearEquations_withSetUp.m;
% Last Revised : January 22, 2020;
% Abstract: This program shows you how to solve a nonlinear equation
% that needs to set up as opposed that is just given to you.
clc
clear all
%% INTRODUCTION
disp(‘ABSTRACT’)
disp(‘ This program shows you how to solve’)
disp(‘ a nonlinear equation that needs to be setup’)
disp(‘ ‘)
disp(‘AUTHORS’)
disp(‘ Autar Kaw and Luis Serrano’)
disp(‘ ‘)
disp(‘MFILE SOURCE’)
disp(‘ http://nm.mathforcollege.com/blog/NonlinearEquations_withSetUp.m’)
disp(‘ ‘)
disp(‘LAST REVISED’)
disp(‘ January 22, 2020’)
disp(‘ ‘)
%% INPUTS
% Solve the nonlinear equation where you need to set up the equation
% For example to find the depth ‘x’ to which a ball is floating in water is based on the following
% cubic equation 4*R^3*S=3*x^2*(R-x/3) R= radius of ball S= specific gravity of ball So how do we set this up if S and R are input values
S=0.6
R=0.055
%% DISPLAYING INPUTS
disp(‘INPUTS’)
func=[‘ The equation to be solved is 4*R^3*S=3*x^2*(R-x/3)’];
disp(func)
disp(‘ ‘)
%% THE CODE
% Define x as a symbol
syms x
% Setting up the equation
C1=4*R^3*S
C2=3*x^2*(R-x/3)
f=C1==C2
% Finding the solution of the nonlinear equation
soln=vpasolve(f,x);
solnvalue=double(soln);
%% DISPLAYING OUTPUTS
disp(‘OUTPUTS’)
for i=1:1:length(solnvalue)
fprintf(‘\nThe solution# %g is %g’,i,solnvalue(i))
end
disp(‘ ‘)

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