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When Sophie Germain attempted to develop a theory for vibrating plates of variable thickness, she was aware of the complexity and importance of the problem. She had to build especial plates to carry out her own experiments. Her memoir of 1825 begins with a review of the relevant literature, citing papers by Euler, Bernoulli, Lagrange, Chladni, Poisson, Navier, Savart, and Italian physicist Giordano Riccati.
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Ibid., p. 47.
Ibid., p. 50.
Ibid., p. 52.
Ibid., p. 60.
Del Centina (2005), p. 14.
Germain (1828), pp. 123–131.
Ibid. “The lady does not appear to have paid that attention to the Calculus of Variations which might have been expected from the pupil and friend of its great inventor Lagrange”, pp. 156–157.
Ventsel and Krauthammer (2001), Eq. (9.3).
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