# Plotting a function defined by equation without closed form solution

I'm trying to have the a silimiar plot to the one Wolfram Alpha provides me here to the equation

$24.6347 \left(246.347 x + \sqrt{(246.347 x + 20)^2 + 1} + 20\right)^{-a} =\ 30.2879 \left(-33.6532 x + \sqrt{x (1132.54 x - 20191.9) + 90001} + 300\right)^{-a}$

for $a>0$. This equation however has no closed form solution for x in terms of a so I don't know how to achieve such a plot.

Minimal "Working" Example:

\documentclass[11pt,a4paper]{scrartcl}
\usepackage{pgfplots}
\begin{document}
\begin{tikzpicture}

\begin{axis}[xlabel=a ,
ylabel = x,
xmin=0, xmax=10,
ymin=0,ymax=1]
domain=0:10,
samples=500,
color=blue,
]
{24.6347*(246.347*x+sqrt((246.347*x+20)^2+1)+20)^(-a)=30.2879*(-33.6532*x+ sqrt(x*(1132.54*x-20191.9)+90001)+300)^(-a)};
%switched the variables because gnuplot requires the variable x as input as far as i know
\end{axis}
\end{tikzpicture}
\end{document}


AFAIK you cannot really produce implicit plots but you can produce contour plots, which have the same information. So instead of plotting the solutions of A=B one plots the contours of A-B=0. You need to run with -shell-escape since this needs gnuplot (which your above example didn't need).

\documentclass[11pt,a4paper]{scrartcl}
\usepackage{pgfplots}
\begin{document}
\begin{tikzpicture}
\begin{axis}[view={0}{90},ylabel=$a$,
xlabel=$x$,xmin=0, xmax=1,ymin=0,ymax=1]
domain=0:1,domain y=0:1]
{24.6347*(246.347*x+sqrt((246.347*x+20)^2+1)+20)^(-y)
-30.2879*(-33.6532*x+ sqrt(x*(1132.54*x-20191.9)+90001)+300)^(-y)};
\end{axis}
\end{tikzpicture}
\end{document} In order to reproduce the Wolfram alpha plot you need to switch x and y back, and adjust the domains.

• This is not working for me. I get the error message ..._contourtmp0.table could not be opened. Normal gnuplots are working fine though. – Paul Ostmann Jul 9 '19 at 15:02
• Your example is now working (no idea what fixed it). How would I go about adding a straight line at a=0.8 in your example? – Paul Ostmann Jul 9 '19 at 16:02
• @PaulOstmann I do not know what caused your problems but the straight line is as easy as saying \draw (0,0.8) -- (1,0.8); inside the axis environment. (It is a bit of a cheat since these are technically 3d coordinates but works.) – user121799 Jul 9 '19 at 17:01
• I found another solution myself: I simply added another contour plot {y-1}(I initially said 0.8 because your solution has the standard domain with y<=1) but now im stuck on trying to add a third plot: the difference of the 2 functions by which I mean 1 - the function in my post. It's supposed to look like this: imgur link – Paul Ostmann Jul 9 '19 at 17:08
• @PaulOstmann With your function you mean the difference the contour plot is using? And yes, \addplot also works. Does  \addplot3 [contour gnuplot={levels=0,labels=false}, domain=0:1,domain y=0:1] {1-24.6347*(246.347*x+sqrt((246.347*x+20)^2+1)+20)^(-y) +30.2879*(-33.6532*x+ sqrt(x*(1132.54*x-20191.9)+90001)+300)^(-y)}; work for you? – user121799 Jul 9 '19 at 17:14

Actually, it does have a closed form solution, at least for a as a function of x. • Honestly I'd prefer your solution. This is just a closed-form plot. – polkovnikov.ph Jul 9 '19 at 22:36

run with xelatex:

\documentclass{article}
\usepackage{pst-func}
\begin{document}

\psset{xunit=0.75}
\begin{pspicture}(-2,-1)(20,6)
\psaxes[Dx=2]{->}(0,0)(-2,-0.5)(18,5)[$a$,0][$x$,90]
\rput[lb](0,0){%
\pspicture*(0.1,0.1)(16,6)
\psplotImp[algebraic,linecolor=red,linewidth=1.5pt](0.05,0.05)(20,6){
24.6347*(246.347*y + sqrt((246.347*y + 20)^2 + 1) + 20)^(-x)-
30.2879*(-33.6532*y + sqrt(y*(1132.54*y - 20191.9) + 90001) + 300)^(-x)}
\endpspicture}
\end{pspicture}

\end{document} 