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# 12/2/13

Diophantine equation - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Diophantine equation

In mathematics, a Diophantine equation is a polynomial equation that allows two or more variables to take integer values only. A linear Diophantine equation is an equation between two sums of monomials of degree zero or one. Diophantine problems have fewer equations than unknown variables and involve finding integers that work correctly for all equations. In more technical language, they define an algebraic curve, algebraic surface, or more general object, and ask about the lattice points on it. The word Diophantine refers to the Hellenistic mathematician of the 3rd century, Diophantus of Alexandria, who made a study of such equations and was one of the first mathematicians to introduce symbolism into algebra. The mathematical study of Diophantine problems that Diophantus initiated is now called Diophantine analysis . While individual equations present a kind of puzzle and have been considered throughout history, the formulation of general theories of Diophantine equations (beyond the theory of quadratic forms) was an achievement of the twentieth century.

Contents
1 Examples of Diophantine equations 2 Diophantine analysis 2.1 Typical questions 2.2 Typical problem 2.3 17th and 18th centuries 2.4 Hilbert's tenth problem 2.5 Modern research 2.6 Infinite Diophantine equations 3 Linear Diophantine equations 4 Exponential Diophantine equations 5 Notes 6 References 7 External links

Examples of Diophantine equations
In the following Diophantine equations, x , y, and z are the unknowns and the other letters are given constants. This is a linear Diophantine equation (see the section "Linear Diophantine equations" below). For n = 2 there are infinitely many solutions (x ,y,z): the Pythagorean triples. For larger integer values of n, Fermat's Last Theorem states there are no positive integer solutions (x , y, z).
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diophantine_equation 1/5

Wikipedia. the free encyclopedia This is Pell's equation.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diophantine_equation 2/5 . and z. rather than treat them as puzzles. which this margin is too narrow to contain. or in general. which is named after the English mathematician John Pell. who also solved a number of other Diophantine equations.12/2/13 Diophantine equation . 4." Stated in more modern language. there exists a solution in x . y. "The equation an + bn = cn has no solutions for any n higher than 2. and that the digits AB making up the father's age are reversed in the son's age (i. Are there any solutions? Are there any solutions beyond some that are easily found by inspection? Are there finitely or infinitely many solutions? Can all solutions be found in theory? Can one in practice compute a full list of solutions? These traditional problems often lay unsolved for centuries. Diophantine analysis Typical questions The questions asked in Diophantine analysis include: 1. Inspection gives the result 73 and 37 years. The equation was eventually solved by Euler in the early 18th century. 2." Such a proof eluded mathematicians for centuries. Fermat attempted to solve the Diophantine equation 61x 2 + 1 = y2 (solved by Brahmagupta over 1000 years earlier).8A = 1. as well as by Fermat in the 17th century." And then he wrote. or a fourth power into two fourth powers. 5. and mathematicians gradually came to understand their depth (in some cases). for every positive integer n ≥ 2. this example is equivalent to the polynomial equation 4xyz = yzn + xzn + xyn = n(yz + xz + xy). Hilbert's tenth problem en. The Erdős–Straus conjecture states that. leads to the equation 19B . and as such his statement became famous as Fermat's Last Theorem. BA). In 1657. any power higher than the second into two like powers.e. however. intriguingly: "I have discovered a truly marvelous proof of this proposition. It wasn't until 1994 that it was proven by the British mathematician Andrew Wiles. It was studied by Brahmagupta in the 7th century. Although not usually stated in polynomial form. 17th and 18th centuries In 1637. Pierre de Fermat scribbled on the margin of his copy of Arithmetica: "It is impossible to separate a cube into two cubes. all as positive integers. 3. Typical problem The given information that a father's age is 1 less than twice that of his son.

since treating arbitrary equations is a dead end. In 1970. Infinite descent is the traditional method. Other major results. and has been pushed a long way. David Hilbert proposed the solvability of all Diophantine problems as the tenth of his celebrated problems. attention turns to equations that also have a geometric meaning. the conjecture known as Fermat's Last Theorem. en. has continued to grow as a result. when K is not algebraically closed.Wikipedia.12/2/13 Diophantine equation . was solved by Andrew Wiles[1] but using tools from algebraic geometry developed during the last century rather than within number theory where the conjecture was originally formulated. and in any case is not something that will be solved except by re-expressing it in other terms. namely a solution to a polynomial equation or a system of polynomial equations. Modern research One of the few general approaches is through the Hasse principle. In other words. which is the application of techniques from algebraic geometry in this field. Compare this to: which does not always have a solution for positive N. Diophantine geometry. see Bézout's identity. Infinite Diophantine equations An example of an infinite diophantine equation is: which can be expressed as "How many ways can a given integer N be written as the sum of a square plus twice a square plus thrice a square and so on?" The number of ways this can be done for each N forms an integer sequence. This equation always has a solution for any positive N. a novel result in mathematical logic known as Matiyasevich's theorem settled the problem negatively: in general Diophantine problems are unsolvable. Linear Diophantine equations For more details on this topic. have disposed of old conjectures. The central idea of Diophantine geometry is that of a rational point. Here variables are still supposed to be integral. the free encyclopedia In 1900.wikipedia. and the equality sign is replaced by upper and lower bounds. the general problem of Diophantine analysis is blessed or cursed with universality.org/wiki/Diophantine_equation 3/5 . The most celebrated single question in the field. The field of Diophantine approximation deals with the cases of Diophantine inequalities. but some coefficients may be irrational numbers. The depth of the study of general Diophantine equations is shown by the characterisation of Diophantine sets as equivalently described as recursively enumerable. such as Faltings' theorem. which is a vector in a prescribed field K. in recognition of their depth. Infinite Diophantine equations are related to theta functions and infinite dimensional lattices.