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March 26, 2017

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is (x^2-5) a factor of x^4-3x^2-1?

  • math analysis - ,

    Let's compute the remainder of the polynomial after division by x^2 - 5. So, we want to evaluate:

    x^4-3x^2-1 Mod (x^2 - 5)

    If we use the equals sign to mean equality Modulo x^2 - 5 in the following, then we have:

    x^2 = 5 ---->

    x^4 = 25

    So, we have:

    x^4 - 3 x^2 - 1 =

    25 - 15 - 1 = 9

    This is nonzero, so x^2 - 5 is not a factor of the polynomial.

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