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Published byEmma Illingworth Modified over 5 years ago

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a + bi

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When we take the square root of both sides of an equation or use the quadratic formula, sometimes we get a negative under the square root. Because of this, we'll introduce the set of complex numbers. This is called the imaginary unit and its square is -1. We write complex numbers in standard form and they look like: This is called the real partThis is called the imaginary part

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We can add, subtract, multiply or divide complex numbers. After performing these operations if we’ve simplified everything correctly we should always again get a complex number (although the real or imaginary parts may be zero). Below is an example of each. (3 – 2i) + (5 – 4i) ADDING Combine real parts and combine imaginary parts = 8 – 6i (3 – 2i) - (5 – 4i) SUBTRACTING = -2 +2i Be sure to distribute the negative through before combining real parts and imaginary parts 3 – 2i - 5 + 4i (3 – 2i) (5 – 4i) MULTIPLYING FOIL and then combine like terms. Remember i 2 = -1 = 15 – 12i – 10i+8i 2 =15 – 22i +8(-1) = 7 – 22i Notice when I’m done simplifying that I only have two terms, a real term and an imaginary one. If I have more than that, I need to simplify more.

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DIVIDING To divide complex numbers, you multiply the top and bottom of the fraction by the conjugate of the bottom. This means the same complex number, but with opposite sign on the imaginary term FOIL Combine like terms We’ll put the 41 under each term so we can see the real part and the imaginary part

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Let’s solve a couple of equations that have complex solutions. -25 Square root and don’t forget the The negative 1 under the square root becomes i Use the quadratic formula

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Powers of i We could continue but notice that they repeat every group of 4. For every i 4 it will = 1 To simplify higher powers of i then, we'll group all the i 4ths and see what is left. 4 will go into 33 8 times with 1 left. 4 will go into 83 20 times with 3 left.

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If we have a quadratic equation and are considering solutions from the complex number system, using the quadratic formula, one of three things can happen. 3. The "stuff" under the square root can be negative and we'd get two complex solutions that are conjugates of each other. The "stuff" under the square root is called the discriminant. This "discriminates" or tells us what type of solutions we'll have. 1. The "stuff" under the square root can be positive and we'd get two unequal real solutions 2. The "stuff" under the square root can be zero and we'd get one solution (called a repeated or double root because it would factor into two equal factors, each giving us the same solution).

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