Meaning of separation of variables

separa'tion of var'iables

Pronunciation: [key]
— Math. Math.
  1. a grouping of the terms of an ordinary differential equation so that associated with each differential is a factor consisting entirely of functions of the independent variable appearing in the differential.
  2. a process of finding a particular solution of a partial differential equation in the form of a product of factors that each involve only one of the variables.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.