TFY4305 - Nonlinear Dynamics


Examination arrangement

Examination arrangement: School exam
Grade: Letter grades

Evaluation Weighting Duration Grade deviation Examination aids
School exam 100/100 4 hours C

Course content

Graphical solution methods for non-linear differential equations. Phase portraits, fixed point analysis, bifurcations, limit cycles, strange attractors, Poincare and Lorenz maps, multiscale perturbation theory. Iterative maps. Period doubling, chaos, scaling and universality. Fractals. Physical examples.

Learning outcome

The course is an introduction to nonlinear systems and chaos. The student is expected to acquire basic knowledge of nonlinear differential equations and iterative maps. The student is capable of finding fixed points and determine their stability, analyze the various types of bifurcations in one dimension (saddle node, transcritical, and pitchfork) and two dimensions (homoclinic, degenerate, and Hopf), draw bifurcation diagrams and stability diagrams. For two-dimensional systems, the student is able to draw phase portraits and find basins of attraction. Moreover, the student is able to analyze limit cycles and their stability. The student can analyze discrete maps, find their fixed points and understand the mechanism behind period doubling. The student has basic knowledge of the most important fractals, and their topological and metric properties. Similarly, the student knows about the properties of the most important strange attractors in discrete and continuous time. The student will improve communication skills by solving problems on the blackboard and training in solving nonlinear problems using numerical methods.

Learning methods and activities

Lectures and problem sessions. All students will go through a set of exercises on the blackboard during the semester, to be allowed to take the exam. In addition, all students must solve a numerical assignment and hand in a report. Expected workload in the course is 225 hours.

Compulsory assignments

  • Exercises

Further on evaluation

Written exam. The re-sit examination may be changed from written to oral.

Course materials

Steven H. Strogatz: Nonlinear Dynamics and Chaos.

Credit reductions

Course code Reduction From To
SIF4088 7.5
FY8910 7.5 AUTUMN 2014
More on the course



Version: 1
Credits:  7.5 SP
Study level: Second degree level


Term no.: 1
Teaching semester:  SPRING 2025

Language of instruction: English

Location: Trondheim

Subject area(s)
  • Biology
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Mathematics
  • Mechanics
Contact information
Course coordinator: Lecturer(s):

Department with academic responsibility
Department of Physics


Examination arrangement: School exam

Term Status code Evaluation Weighting Examination aids Date Time Examination system Room *
Spring ORD School exam 100/100 C INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
Summer UTS School exam 100/100 C INSPERA
Room Building Number of candidates
  • * The location (room) for a written examination is published 3 days before examination date. If more than one room is listed, you will find your room at Studentweb.

For more information regarding registration for examination and examination procedures, see "Innsida - Exams"

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