Open Access Research

Minimal and maximal solutions to first-order differential equations with state-dependent deviated arguments

Rubén Figueroa* and Rodrigo López Pouso

Author Affiliations

Department of Mathematical Analysis, University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain

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Boundary Value Problems 2012, 2012:7  doi:10.1186/1687-2770-2012-7

Published: 20 January 2012

Abstract

We prove some new results on existence of solutions to first-order ordinary differential equations with deviated arguments. Delay differential equations are included in our general framework, which even allows deviations to depend on the unknown solutions. Our existence results lean on new definitions of lower and upper solutions introduced in this article, and we show with an example that similar results with the classical definitions are false. We also introduce an example showing that the problems considered need not have the least (or the greatest) solution between given lower and upper solutions, but we can prove that they do have minimal and maximal solutions in the usual set-theoretic sense. Sufficient conditions for the existence of lower and upper solutions, with some examples of application, are provided too.