B.N. Narahari Achar, PhD Physics, Penn. State Univ.
Dr. John W. Hanneken, PhD Physics, Rice Univ.
Fractional Calculus is the area of analysis that considers the possibility of fractional
ordered derivatives and integrals of functions, the foundations of which were laid
down in the early 19th century by Liouville.
A fractional time derivative, for example, takes the form:
where α need not be an integer, but any real number.
Recently, Fractional Calculus has been applied to a variety of physical phenomena,
including anomalous diffusion, transmission line theory, and problems involving oscillations.
Resources
 16 node cluster of iMac G5s running Mathematica 5.1
Examples of Ongoing Research Projects
 Anomalous Diffusion
 Power transmission
 Distribution and Other Properties of Zeros of MittagLeffler Functions
 Other potential Fractional Calculus applications
For more information, please contact:

Above: Shown is the amplitude of a forced fractional oscillator as a function of frequency
where α = 2 corresponds to the harmonic oscillator. Unlike harmonic oscillators, the
finite peak is intrinsic and not due to external damping. Notice that resonance does
not occur at the forcing frequency.
Above: The displacement of a fractional oscillator as a function of dimensionless time.
Notice the decay in the displacement despite the absence of an external damping force.
Left: The exact solution of the concentration profile of a solute diffusing anomalously
inside a sphere. This profile is obtained from solution of a fractional diffusion
(heat) equation in a sphere.
