Questions involving complex numbers: numbers of the form $a+bi$ where $i^2=-1$.

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1answer
2k views

Intuition for complex eigenvalues

The eigenvalues of a rotation matrix are complex numbers. I understand that they cannot be real numbers because when you rotate something no direction stays the same. My question What is the ...
9
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6answers
1k views

Solve $z^4+1=0$ algebraically

I know the result and how to solve it using trigonometry and De Moivre. However, given that the complex number $z$ can be rewritten as $a+bi$, how can I solve it algebraically?
9
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6answers
15k views

“Where” exactly are complex numbers used “in the real world”?

I've always enjoyed solving problems in the complex world during my undergrad. However, I've always wondered where are they used and for what? In my domain (computer science) I've rarely seen it be ...
9
votes
1answer
384 views

i^i^i^i^… Is there a pattern? [duplicate]

I was messing around with $i$ and I (haha) noticed that certain progressions arise when I keep on raising $i$ to $i$ to $i$ and so forth. Though, I am not really quite sure what is going on (and I ...
9
votes
2answers
153 views

Maximum of $\frac{\sin z}{z}$ in the closed unit disc.

I have some trouble with the following question: Let $$f(z)=\frac{\sin z}{z},\quad\text{for }z\in\mathbb{C}.$$ What is the maximum of $f$ in the closed unit disc ...
9
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6answers
513 views

If $A,B,C,D$ are complex numbers on the unit circle with $A+B+C+D=0$, then they form a rectangle

Let $A, B, C, D$ be points on a unit circle. Prove that if $A+B+C+D=0$, then $A,B,C,D$ make a rectangle. (Use complex numbers.) How do I prove this? I tried to use the dot product of 2 adjacent ...
9
votes
2answers
401 views

If the sequence $(a_n b_n)$ converges and $a_n \to 0$, when does $(b_n)$ converge too?

Given that the sequence $(a_n b_n)$ converges and $a_n \to 0$, are there conditions which can be placed on $(b_n)$ and/or $(a_n b_n)$ so that $(b_n)$ converges as well?
9
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2answers
229 views

History of the matrix representation of complex numbers

It is well-known to many that $\mathbb{C}$ can be represented by matrices of the form $\left[ \begin{array}{cc} a & b \\ -b & a \end{array} \right]$. For example, see this question or this ...
9
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2answers
83 views

When does $(e^a)^b = e^{ab}$ hold?

For a complex number $A$ and a real number $B$, when does the well-known formula $(e^A)^B = e^{AB}$ fail? Or does it hold at all for complex A? Since $e^{2\pi i} = 1$, if this formula holds for ...
9
votes
0answers
4k views

What's more common? Re / Im or Fraktur-R / Fraktur-I for real / imaginary part?

Title says it all. What's more common? Is there one to prefere (maybe due to some norm)? This: $\operatorname{\mathfrak{R}} z, \operatorname{\mathfrak{I}} z$ or that: $\operatorname{Re}z, ...
8
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6answers
660 views

Show that if $r$ is an nth root of $1$ and $r\ne1$, then $1 + r + r^2 + … + r^{n-1} = 0$.

Show that if $r$ is an nth root of $1$ and $r\ne1$, then $1 + r + r^2 + ... + r^{n-1} = 0$. I think I can represent all the roots of 1 as follows: $r = 1^{\frac{1}{n}} ( \frac{\cos{2\pi k}}{n} + ...
8
votes
4answers
420 views

Is it correct to say that $\mathbb{R}$ has fewer elements than $\mathbb{C}$ if both are infinite?

My math teacher said that. I disagreed, but he said that I was wrong. But I'm not convinced - is it really right? Please notice that I'm not talking about $\mathbb{R}$ $⊂$ $\mathbb{C}$, but ...
8
votes
6answers
4k views

How can you find the cubed roots of $i$?

I am trying to figure out what the three possibilities of $z$ are such that $$ z^3=i $$ but I am stuck on how to proceed. I tried algebraically but ran into rather tedious polynomials. Could you ...
8
votes
4answers
425 views

Is there a problem in defining a complex number by $ z = x+iy$?

The field $\mathbb{C} $ of complex numbers is well-defined by the Hamilton axioms of addition and product between complex numbers, i.e., a complex number $z$ is a ordered pair of real numbers $(x,y)$, ...
8
votes
3answers
412 views

How to prove $|z_1-z_2| \geq |z_1|-|z_2|$ in other way than this?

How to prove $|z_1-z_2| \geq |z_1|-|z_2|$ in other way than this? I mean I tried to find on the internet but could not find. I ask for more straighforward way than the proof that is presented for item ...
8
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3answers
406 views

Proof for law of complex exponents using only differential equation

I just read that an elegant proof exists that the law of exponents also holds for complex numbers ($a,b,z$ all complex): $$e^{a+b}=e^ae^b,$$ which only uses the definition that $$y=e^{zt}$$ is a ...
8
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3answers
701 views

How to raise a complex number to the power of another complex number?

How do I calculate the outcome of taking one complex number to the power of another, ie $\displaystyle {(a + bi)}^{(c + di)}$?
8
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5answers
925 views

Alternative to imaginary numbers?

In this video, starting at 3:45 the professor says There are some superb papers written that discount the idea that we should ever use j (imaginary unit) on the grounds that it conceals some ...
8
votes
5answers
546 views

Is there any way to represent an imaginary number?

Is there any way to represent an imaginary number? Like the square root of -1? Is there any possible way to do this? Sorry if you think this is a dumb question. I am a 7th grade student in ...
8
votes
4answers
396 views

Why does the imaginary number $i$ satisfy $i\times 0=0$?

Why does the imaginary number $i$ satisfy $i\times 0=0$? I mean, we don't really know what $i$ is. How could we be sure about that? I think there's a reason behind why mathematicians decided that.
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6answers
440 views

Has anyone talked themselves into understanding Euler's identity a bit?

What does the ratio of the circumference of a circle to its diameter have to do with the base of the natural logarithm and $\sqrt{-1}$?
8
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5answers
486 views

What's the importance of a formula for the real and imaginary parts of a complex number?

I've learned that $$\bbox[8px,border:1px solid black]{\operatorname{Re}(z)= \frac{z+\overline{z}}{2} \qquad \qquad \operatorname{Im}(z)=\frac{z-\overline{z}}{2i}} $$ And that in the number $z=a+bi$, ...
8
votes
4answers
269 views

When are we (not) allowed to replace $x$ by $ix$?

It seems to be quite a common manipulation to replace $x$ by $ix$. Every time I see it's being done in a textbook, I blindly trust the author without really understanding when are we allowed to do so ...
8
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4answers
3k views

Do the real numbers and the complex numbers have the same cardinality?

So it's easy to show that the rationals and the integers have the same size, using everyone's favorite spiral-around-the-grid. Can the approach be extended to say that the set of complex numbers has ...
8
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3answers
229 views

Putting ${n \choose 0} + {n \choose 5} + {n \choose 10} + \cdots + {n \choose 5k} + \cdots$ in a closed form

As the title says, I'm trying to transform $\displaystyle{n \choose 0} + {n \choose 5} + {n \choose 10} + \cdots + {n \choose 5k} + \cdots$ into a closed form. My work: $\displaystyle\left(1 + ...
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3answers
6k views

Can a real symmetric matrix have complex eigenvectors?

A Hermitian matrix always has real eigenvalues and real or complex orthogonal eigenvectors. A real symmetric matrix is a special case of Hermitian matrices, so it too has orthogonal eigenvectors and ...
8
votes
2answers
565 views

Summation of complex numbers

This is a series problem where the terms are complex numbers. I am looking for a better approach to solving this problem. If $\displaystyle z = \frac{1+i}{\sqrt2}$, Evaluate $1 + z + z^2 + ... + ...
8
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2answers
343 views

Are there any elegant methods to classify of the Gaussian primes?

Out of curiosity, are there any relatively quick classifications of all the Gaussian primes, the primes in $\mathbb{Z}[i]$? I found a classification here, but the process comes off as rather tedious. ...
8
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3answers
142 views

What is the right treatment for $0^i$?

I need to calculate a limit of a complex expression (had it in a physics research) that contains a term $(r-b)^p$ for $r\rightarrow b+$ where $r,b$ are reals, and $p$ is complex, let's suppose for ...
8
votes
3answers
18k views

How to get principal argument of complex number from complex plane?

I am just starting to learn calculus and the concepts of radians. Something that is confusing me is how my textbook is getting the principal argument ($\arg z$) from the complex plane. i.e. for the ...
8
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2answers
324 views

If $0$, $z_1$, $z_2$ and $z_3$ are concyclic, then $\frac{1}{z_1}$,$\frac{1}{z_2}$,$\frac{1}{z_3}$ are collinear

If the complex numbers $0$, $z_1$, $z_2$ and $z_3$ are concyclic, prove that $\frac{1}{z_1}$,$\frac{1}{z_2}$,$\frac{1}{z_3}$ are collinear. I really can't seem to get anywhere on this problem, ...
8
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3answers
184 views

Proving that the limit of a sequence is $> 0$

Let $u$ be the complex sequence defined as follows : $u_0=i$ and $ \forall n \in \mathbb N, u_{n+1}=u_n + \frac {n+1-u_n}{|n+1-u_n|} $ . Consider $w_n$ defined by $\forall n \in \mathbb ...
8
votes
0answers
50 views

An Inequality with complex numbers and $1/\pi$ [duplicate]

Let $\displaystyle \{z_1,z_2, \ldots, z_n\}$ be $n$ complex numbers such that: $\displaystyle \sum\limits_{k=1}^n|z_k| = 1$ Then we have to show that, there is a subset $S$ of $\{1,2,\ldots,n\}$, ...
8
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0answers
112 views

Complex Exponential False “Proof” That All Integers Are $0$

The following false "proof" is attributed to Thomas Clausen in 1827, and was stated on page 79 of Nahin's An Imaginary Tale. $e^{i2\pi n}=1$ for all integers $n$. So \begin{align*} ee^{i2\pi ...
7
votes
8answers
2k views

What's the thing with $\sqrt{-1} = i$

What's the thing with $\sqrt{-1} = i$? Do they really teach this in the US? It makes very little sense, because $-i$ is also a square root of $-1$, and the choice of which root to label as $i$ is ...
7
votes
4answers
721 views

Adding powers of $i$

I've been struggling with figuring out how to add powers of $i$. For example, the result of $i^3 + i^4 + i^5$ is $1$. But how do I get the result of $i^3 + i^4 + ... + i^{50}$? Writing it all down ...
7
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7answers
1k views

How to solve $e^{ix} = i$

I am taking an on-line course and the following homework problem was posed: $$e^{ix} = i$$ I have no idea how to solve this problem. I have never dealt with solving equations that have imaginary ...
7
votes
3answers
215 views

$ \exists a, b \in \mathbb{Z} $ such that $ a^2 + b^2 = 5^k $

I saw this problem recently and found an elegant solution to it, and was curious to see if anybody would think of something else. Nice solutions to nice problems are fun to see! Problem: Prove ...
7
votes
7answers
235 views

Is $\mathbb{C}$ equal to $\mathbb{R}^2$?

Complex numbers are usually formally defined as pairs of real numbers. Although there are operations on $\mathbb{C}$, such as complex multiplication, which are not found in operations usually applied ...
7
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8answers
698 views

what is$ \sqrt{8i}$

Very simple question with an answer that I cannot understand: I have $\sqrt{8i}$, which, I suppose, is the same as $\sqrt{\sqrt{-64}}$. How come that $2+2i$ is the same as $\sqrt{8i}$? My ...
7
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2answers
3k views

What does $\mathrm{Re}(x)$ mean?

I see this all the time in Mathematica output as well as in text, such as near the top of the Wikipedia Beta function page.
7
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6answers
288 views

Prove if $|z|=|w|=1$, and $1+zw \neq 0$, then $ {{z+w} \over {1+zw}} $ is a real number

If $|z|=|w|=1$, and $1+zw \neq 0$, then $ {{z+w} \over {1+zw}} \in \Bbb R $ i found one link that had a similar problem. Prove if $|z| < 1$ and $ |w| < 1$, then $|1-zw^*| \neq 0$ and $| {{z-w} ...
7
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3answers
404 views

Why are complex numbers considered to be numbers?

I've had Dave's Short Course on Complex Numbers on the web since 1999, and I'd like to add a page on why complex numbers are (or should be) considered to be numbers. I'm frequently asked that ...
7
votes
5answers
260 views

Does there exist a field $K$ such that $\mathbb R \subsetneq K \subsetneq \mathbb C$?

I'm thinking of unions of $\mathbb R$ with some subset of $\mathbb C$ but am not sure how to approach this without ending up with all of $\mathbb C$. Doe anyone have any suggestions?
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2answers
1k views

Determinant of an $n\times n$ complex matrix as an $2n\times 2n$ real determinant

If $A$ is an $n\times n$ complex matrix. Is it possible to write $\vert \det A\vert^2$ as a $2n\times 2n$ matrix with blocks containing the real and imaginary parts of $A$? I remember seeing such a ...
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2answers
1k views

Limit of complex function

Im trying to find the limit of: $$ \frac{\operatorname{Re}(z) \operatorname{Im}(z)}{z^2}$$ as z tends to zero.
7
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2answers
344 views

How does one find $z\in \mathbb{C}$ such that $\sin z=100?$

I am self-studying Complex Analysis and I am suppose to find $z\in \mathbb{C}$ such that $\sin z=100.$ I know that $$\sin z=\sin x \cosh y+i\cos x\sinh y$$ So I must have $\sin x \cosh y=100.$ I ...
7
votes
2answers
316 views

Why is $\left(e^{2\pi i}\right)^i \neq e^{-2 \pi}$?

Here's my (obviously flawed) proof that $1=e^{-2 \pi}$: $$ 1^i=1\\ e^{2 \pi i} = 1\\ \left(e^{2\pi i}\right)^i = 1^i\\ e^{-2 \pi} = 1 $$ What's the issue? I understand that exponentiation is not ...
7
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4answers
3k views

Non-integer powers of negative numbers

Roots behave strangely over complex numbers. Given this, how do non-integer powers behave over negative numbers? More specifically: Can we define fractional powers such as $(-2)^{-1.5}$? Can we ...
7
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2answers
156 views

Invariant under transformation $i\mapsto -i$ implies real?

When one has an expression in terms of $i$, one can send $i$ to $-i$ and, if the expression remains unchanged, one can conclude that the expression is, in fact, real. Analogous statements hold for ...