numbers $z$ such that $z^n=1$ for some natural number $n$; here usually $z$ is in $\mathbb C$ or some other field

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24
votes
2answers
984 views

Drunkard's walk on the $n^{th}$ roots of unity.

Fix an integer $n\geq 2$. Suppose we start at the origin in the complex plane, and on each step we choose an $n^{th}$ root of unity at random, and go $1$ unit distance in that direction. Let ...
22
votes
3answers
4k views

Prove that $\prod_{k=1}^{n-1}\sin\frac{k \pi}{n} = \frac{n}{2^{n-1}}$

Using $\text{n}^{\text{th}}$ root of unity $$\large\left(e^{\frac{2ki\pi}{n}}\right)^{n} = 1$$ Prove that $$\prod_{k=1}^{n-1}\sin\frac{k \pi}{n} = \frac{n}{2^{n-1}}$$
16
votes
3answers
951 views

Is $\sqrt 7$ the sum of roots of unity?

Let $a_n$ and $b_n$ be 2 sequences of $n$ rationals. Is it possible that $\sqrt 7 = \sum_{m=1}^{n} a_m (-1)^{b_m}$ ? Is it possible that $\sqrt{17}$ = $\sum_{m=1}^{n} a_m (-1)^{b_m}$ ? How to ...
10
votes
1answer
196 views

Roots of unity in non-Abelian groups: when do they form subgroups?

I haven't studied group theory in earnest beyond first courses, so my notation may be nonstandard and my question may be a 'standard fact', so bear with me: Consider a group $G$, and for each natural ...
10
votes
1answer
414 views

Question on a homomorphism of a set G.

I'm having difficulty showing the given a map, say $\phi(z)=z^k$, is surjective. This question is from D & F section 1.6 - #19 Let $G$ =$\{z \in \mathbb C|z^n=1 \text{ for some } n \in \mathbb ...
8
votes
2answers
140 views

What is the value of $\sum_{m=1}^{19} \frac{1}{\zeta^{3m}+\zeta^{2m}+\zeta^{m}+1}$ with $\zeta=e^{2\pi i/19}$?

Given that $\zeta=e^{2\pi i/19}$, how to find the value of $$S=\sum_{m=1}^{19} \dfrac{1}{\zeta^{3m}+\zeta^{2m}+\zeta^{m}+1}$$? All I could think of was to somehow factorize the denominator and apply ...
8
votes
1answer
220 views

A little more on $\sqrt[3]{\cos\bigl(\tfrac{2\pi}7\bigr)}+\sqrt[3]{\cos\bigl(\tfrac{4\pi}7\bigr)}+\sqrt[3]{\cos\bigl(\tfrac{8\pi}7\bigr)}$

Using a special case of an identity by Ramanujan, we find that given the roots $x_i$ of $$x^3 + x^2 - (3 n^2 + n)x + n^3=0\tag1$$ which, since its discriminant is negative, always has three real ...
8
votes
1answer
269 views

Expectation of a Random Subset of the Roots of Unity.

Let $p$ be a prime. If $1_A(x)$ denotes the indicator function of the set $A\subset\mathbb{Z}/p\mathbb{Z}$ and $$\hat{1}_A(t):=\frac{1}{p}\sum_{n=1}^p 1_A(n)e^{2\pi i \frac{nt}{p}}$$ denotes the ...
7
votes
1answer
153 views

Inverse Limits: Isomorphism between Gal$(\mathbb{Q}(\cup_{n \geq 1}\mu_n)/\mathbb{Q})$ and $\varprojlim (\mathbb{Z}/n\mathbb{Z})^\times$

I'm trying to prove that $\operatorname{Gal}(\mathbb{Q}(\cup_{n \geq 1}\mu_n)/\mathbb{Q}) \cong \widehat{\mathbb{Z}}^\times = (\varprojlim (\mathbb{Z}/n\mathbb{Z}))^\times$, where $\varprojlim$ ...
7
votes
1answer
216 views

What's so special about primes $x^2+27y^2 = 31,43, 109, 157,\dots$ for cubics?

While trying to find a closed-form solution for particular cubics as sums of cosines (related to this question), I came across this family with all roots real, $$F(x) = x^3+x^2-mx+N = ...
6
votes
4answers
788 views

Prove that $\cot^2{(\pi/7)} + \cot^2{(2\pi/7)} + \cot^2{(3\pi/7)} = 5$

Prove that $\cot^2{(\pi/7)} + \cot^2{(2\pi/7)} + \cot^2{(3\pi/7)} = 5$ . I am sure this is derived from using roots of unity and Euler's complex number function, but I am very uncomfortable in these ...
6
votes
3answers
131 views

Showing that $\mathbb{Q}(\zeta_p, \sqrt[p]{\ell}) = \mathbb{Q}(\zeta_p + \sqrt[p]{\ell})$ for $p,\ell$ primes.

We consider the polynomial $x^p - \ell$, where $p,\ell$ are both prime numbers. Let $\zeta_p$ be a $p$-th root of unity. We wish to show that $L = \mathbb{Q}(\zeta_p, \sqrt[p]{\ell})$ is the same as ...
6
votes
1answer
626 views

Zero sum of roots of unity decomposition

It's known that sum of all $n$'th roots of some $z \in \mathbb C$ with $|z| = 1$ is zero (if $n \geqslant 2$). Is it true that any zero sum of roots of unity can be decomposed in this way? That is if ...
6
votes
1answer
152 views

What does root of unity in $\mathbb{Z}_p$ look like?

Let $p$ be an odd prime. Then by Hensel's lemma it's clear that $\mathbb{Z}_p $ contains all $p-1$th root of unity which reduces to $1$, $2$, ... , $p-1$ in $\mathbb{F}_p$. My question is do we know ...
6
votes
1answer
275 views

Relation that holds for the Legendre symbol of an integer but not for the Jacobi symbol?

Let $p$ be a prime number and $\big(\frac{a}{p} \big)$ the Legendre symbol. Then we have the equality $$\sum_{a=1}^{p-1} \big(\frac{a}{p} \big) \zeta^a =\sum_{t=0}^{p-1} \zeta^{t^2},$$ where $\zeta$ ...
5
votes
1answer
351 views

Why can't we just say 1 instead of “unity”?

I know this is a soft question of sorts but I am curious why we can't just say "1" instead of "unity," e.g. a root of unity.
5
votes
5answers
347 views

Prove that $(x^2-x^3)(x^4-x) = \sqrt{5}$, where $x= \cos(2\pi/5)+i\sin(2\pi/5)$

Prove $(x^2-x^3)(x^4-x) = \sqrt{5}$ if $x= \cos(2\pi/5)+i\sin(2\pi/5)$. I have tried it by substituting $x = \exp(2i\pi/5)$ but it is getting complicated.
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Quadratic subfield of cyclotomic field

Let $p$ be prime and let $\zeta_p$ be a primitive $p$th root of unity. Consider the quadratic subfield of $\mathbb{Q}(\zeta_p)$. For instance, for $p=5$ we get the quadratic subfield to be ...
5
votes
2answers
286 views

Probability a polynomial has a root which is a root of unity

Consider a degree $n$ polynomial $P(x)$ with coefficients $c_i \in \{-1,0,1\}$ chosen uniformly and independently. What is the probability that $P(x)$ has a root which is a root of unity? ...
5
votes
2answers
470 views

Radical extension

Let $K=\mathbb{Q}(\sqrt[n]a)$ where $a\in\mathbb{Q}$, $a>0$ and suppose $[K:\mathbb{Q}]=n$. Let $E$ be any subfield of $K$ and let $[E:\mathbb{Q}]=d.$ Prove that $E=\mathbb{Q}(\sqrt[d]a)$. It's ...
5
votes
1answer
61 views

Simple-looking bound on root of unity

I am trying to prove some bound and stuck with the following: If $|n|\leq 3N/4$, then $\left|e^{2\pi in/N}-1\right|\geq\dfrac{n}{N}$ ($n,N$ are integers) How can I prove it?
5
votes
0answers
57 views

Singularities at roots of unity

I want to construct a function $f$ with the following properties: $f$ has a singularity at $z=1$, and for any $\zeta = e^{2\pi i\frac{a}{b}}$ with $(a,b)=1$, then $$\lim\limits_{x\to1^-}\frac{f(\zeta ...
5
votes
0answers
59 views

Geometrical construction of 7th roots of unity given parabola x^2

Given parabola $x^2$ on plane, how can I construct 7th roots of unity? I was straying with my only idea, that sum of squares of real and imaginary part of roots of 1 equals 1 and belongs to ...
4
votes
3answers
318 views

Question on primitive roots of unity

Let $p$ be an odd prime and $\omega$ be a primitive $p$th root of unity. The question is to prove that: $$(1-\omega)(1-\omega^2) \cdots (1-\omega^{p-1})=p$$ What I have done so far is: I can see ...
4
votes
2answers
154 views

Question on roots of unity

This may seem absurd but what is wrong with the next reasoning about $n$th roots of unit?. For $k,l\in\mathbb Z$ such that $0 \leq k < l \leq n-1$: $$ e^{2\pi i k/n} = (e^{\pi i})^{2 k /n} ...
4
votes
2answers
96 views

is $\sqrt p$ in $\mathbb Q(\zeta_{4p})$?

i think for every prime $p$ we have $\sqrt p \in \mathbb Q(\zeta_{4p})$ when $\zeta_{4p}$ is a primitive 4p-th root of unity.but i have no idea to prove it. is it true? can any one help me with a ...
4
votes
3answers
151 views

Is $\sqrt[3]{-1}=-1$?

I observe that if we claim that $\sqrt[3]{-1}=-1$, we reach a contradiction. Let's, indeed, suppose that $\sqrt[3]{-1}=-1$. Then, since the properties of powers are preserved, we have: ...
4
votes
1answer
124 views

A property of power series and the q-th roots of unity

I'm trying to understand why if $ \displaystyle \sum_{n=0}^{\infty} a_{n}x^{n} = f(x) $, then $$ \sum_{n=0}^{\infty} a_{p+nq} x^{p+nq} = \frac{1}{q} \sum_{j=0}^{q-1} \omega^{-jp} f(\omega^{j} x)$$ ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

If z is one of the fifth roots of unity, not 1…

If z is one of the fifth roots of unity, not 1, show that: $1+z+z^2+z^3+z^4=0$ Which wasn't too bad, but the next part is killing me: show that: $z-z^2+z^3-z^4=2i(sin(2\pi/5)-sin(\pi/5))$ Can ...
4
votes
2answers
80 views

Is this matrix invertible?

I have been working on a proof and am stuck with showing that the below matrix is invertible. I am not interested in the explicit inverse, only showing it has a nonzero determinant as the existence of ...
4
votes
2answers
44 views

Primitive $p^n$-th root of unity in $\bar{\mathbb{Q}}_p$.

I am trying to solve the following exercise in Koblitz's "$p$-adic Numbers, $p$-adic analysis, and Zeta-Functions". Let $p$ be a prime. Let $a$ be a primitive $p^n$-th root of unity in ...
4
votes
5answers
122 views

Why is $\sqrt [n] 1$ not an expression “in radicals” of a root of unity?

In Edwards' Galois Theory, in the chapter on Cyclotomic polynomials, the author devotes a lot of effort to proving that prime order primitive roots of unity can be expressed "by radicals", and gives ...
4
votes
1answer
510 views

A finite field extension $K\supset\mathbb Q$ contains finitely many roots of unity

I must show that any finite field extension $K\supset \mathbb Q$ can only contain finitely many roots of unity. I reasoned in the following manner: Let $n<\infty$ be the degree of $K$ over ...
4
votes
1answer
91 views

Alternating Series Using Other Roots of Unity

$\sum (-1)^n b_n$ is representative of an alternating series. We look at whether $\sum b_n$ converges and if $b_{n+1}<b_n$ $\forall n\in \mathbb{Z}$. What if our alternating series is of the form ...
4
votes
1answer
76 views

Can $\sin(\pi/25)$ be expressed in radicals, revisited

This was inspired by this post. Let, $$q = e^{2\pi\, i/m}$$ D. Speyer's answer can be generalized as, $$\sin\Big(\frac{\pi}{m^2}\Big) = \frac{i}{2}\Big(-q^{1/(2m)}+q^{-1/(2m)} \Big)\tag1$$ while ...
4
votes
1answer
110 views

$\sum_{\zeta^p=1}(\zeta-1)^n$

Given $n\geq0$ let $$ z_n=\sum_{\zeta^p=1}(\zeta-1)^n $$ where $p$ is an odd prime number (summation extended to all $p$-th roots of 1). It is clear that: $z_n\in\Bbb Z$ (it's a Galois invariant sum ...
4
votes
2answers
230 views

Discriminant of $x^n-1$

Question is to find discriminant of polynomial $x^n-1$ I consider $f(x)=x^n-1=(x-a_1)(x-a_2)(x-a_3)\cdots(x-a_n)$ Now, ...
4
votes
1answer
138 views

Is the sum of roots of unity always a real multiple of a root of unity?

I can see this is true for the sum of two roots of unity with some basic trigonometry (the resulting argument is the half the sum of the original arguments, and so must also be a rational multiple of ...
4
votes
0answers
92 views

More on primes $p=u^2+27v^2$ and roots of unity

Given, $$p=u^2+27v^2=3m+1\tag1$$ and the cubic, $$x^3+x^2-mx+N=0\tag2$$ with its constant expressed in terms of $(1)$ as, $$N = \frac{1}{27}(1-3p\pm2pu)\tag3$$ and the sign $\pm u$ chosen ...
4
votes
2answers
156 views

Nth root of Unity

Hi all I am in higher level mathematics and I am taking the IB. We started doing problems associated with nth root of unity. I understand how to find the roots of for example: $$Z^3 - 1 =0$$ and ...
4
votes
0answers
76 views

Irrational roots of unity?

Is it possible to take irrational roots of unity? For example, say I wanted to solve $f(x)=(x+1)^{\sqrt{2}}=1$. I found that one solution is the obvious $x=0$, and another one can be written nicely as ...
3
votes
4answers
134 views

$z^{10}+\frac{1}{z^{10}}=?$

$z$ is a complex number and $z^2+z+1=0$. $$z^{10}+\frac{1}{z^{10}}=?$$ For the solution: the roots of $z^2+z+1$ are: $z_1=-\frac12+\frac{\sqrt3}{2}i$ and $z_2=-\frac12-\frac{\sqrt3}{2}i$ ...
3
votes
5answers
443 views

I'd like to get explain about complex roots

If $x^6+1=0$ so $x^6=-1$, then we have to find the roots at $\mathbb{C}$. I saw that the roots are $$\Large{e^{(\frac{\pi}{6}+\frac{2k\pi}{6})i}}\;\small{k=0,1,2,3,4,5}$$ this what I understand. ...
3
votes
5answers
134 views

How to solve $z^6+i=0$

I'm trying to solve $z^6+i=0$. I would have say that it's equivalent to $$z^6=-i\iff |z|^6e^{i6\arg(z)}=e^{i\frac{3\pi}{2}}\iff|z|^6=e^{i\left(\frac{3\pi}{2}-6\arg(z)\right)}$$ But I'm not able to ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

How can I find the fifth root of unity?

I need to find fifth root of unity in the form $x+iy$. I'm new to this topic and would appreciate a detailed "dummies guide to..." explanation! I understand the formula, whereby for this question I ...
3
votes
4answers
137 views

Norm of an element in cyclotomic extension (Exercises VI.19 Lang's Algebra)

Let $\zeta$ be a primitive $n^{\rm{th}}$ root of unity. Let $K=\mathbb{Q}(\zeta)$. If $n=p^r (r\geq 1)$ is a prime power, show that $N_{K/F}(1-\zeta)=p$ If $n$ is divisible by at least two distinct ...
3
votes
2answers
78 views

Determine whether ${\dfrac{2+i}{2-i}}$ is a root of unity

I need to determine whether ${\dfrac{2+i}{2-i}}$ is a root of unity. At first, I expressed this number as ${\dfrac{3}{5}+\dfrac{4}{5}i}$. Then I tried to use a formula for $\sin{nx}$, where x = ...
3
votes
3answers
502 views

Why is the reciprocal of an $n$-th root of unity its complex conjugate?

As stated in the Wikipedia article on roots of unity, the reciprocal of an $n$-th root of unity is its complex conjugate. They provide the following proof of this statement: Let $z\in\mathbb{C}$ be a ...
3
votes
3answers
55 views

Roots of unity are distincts

For every $n\in\Bbb N$ and $$z_{k}:= \cos(2\pi k /n)+i\sin(2\pi k /n), \qquad k = 0,\ldots,n-1$$ we have $z_k^n=1$. How to show, in a simple way, that $z_k\neq z_l$ for every $k\neq l$? By ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

To prove: $ [K : \mathbb{Q}] = 2 \ \Longrightarrow \ \exists \zeta \text{ primitive root of unity}, \ \mathbb{Q}(\zeta) \ \supseteq \ K $

I have to show that the following statement is true: Let $K$ Be a field extending $\mathbb{Q}$ such that $[K: \mathbb{Q}] \ = \ 2$. Then there is a root of unity $\zeta$ such that $K \subseteq ...