
#1
Jan1513, 02:29 AM

P: 227

hey guys
given [itex]Ax=B[/itex] where A is a square matrix and x and B are vectors, can anyone tell me why a singular matrix (that is, the determinant = 0) implies one of two situations: infinite solutions or zero solutions? a proof would be nice. i read through pauls notes but there was no proof. thanks all! 



#2
Jan1513, 03:12 AM

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PF Gold
P: 10,990

If ##\mathbf{A}\vec{x}=\vec{y}## then ##\mathbf{A}^{1}\vec{y}=\vec{x}## provided the inverse exists.
If the matrix ##\mathbf{A}## is singular, it does not have an inverse. Another name for it is "degenerate". What does that tell you about the solutions? (Think about it in terms of solving simultaneous equations.) 



#3
Jan1513, 07:09 AM

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PF Gold
P: 38,881

An n by n square matrix represents a linear transformation, A, from R^{n} to R^{n}. If it is "nonsingular", then it maps all of R^{n} to all of R^{n}. That is, it is a "one to one" mapping given any y in R^{n} there exist a unique x in R^{n} such that Ax= y.
But we can show that, for any linear transformation, A, from one vector space, U, to another, V, the "image" of A, that is, the set of all vectors y, of the form y= Ax for some x, is a subspace of V and that the "null space" of A, the set of all vectors, x, in U such that Ax= 0, is a subspace of U. Further, we have the "dimension theorem". If "m" is dimension of the image of A (called the "rank" of A) and "n" is the dimension of the nullspace of A (called the "nullity" of A) then m+ n is equal to the dimension of V. In particuar, if U and V have the same dimension, n, and the rank of A is m with m< n, then the nullity of A= mn> 0. It is further true that if A(u)= v and u' is in the nullspace of A then A(u+ u')= A(u)+ A(u')= v+ 0= v. The result of all of that is this: If A is a singular linear transformation from vector space U to vector space V, then it maps U into some subspace of V. If y is NOT in that subspace then there is NO x such that Ax= y. If y is in that subspace then there exist x such that Ax= y but also, for any v in the nullity of A (which has nonzero dimension and so contains an infinite number of vectors) A(x+ v)= y also so there exist an infinite number of such vectors. 



#4
Jan1613, 08:38 PM

P: 227

singular matrix theory
thanks this makes tons of sense!



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