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Basic square root question

  1. Dec 13, 2005 #1

    dnt

    User Avatar

    suppose you have square root of -16 times square root of -25 (in separate square root symbols).

    would the answer be:

    a) no solution - cant have negative square roots

    b) 4i times 5i which equals 20i^2 which is -20

    c) -16 times -25 which is +400, then the square root of that is 20

    which one is correct?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 13, 2005 #2

    Dale

    Staff: Mentor

    Exponentiation has a higher precedence than multiplication, just like multiplication has a higher precedence than addition. You therefore have to evaluate the roots before evaluating the multiplication.

    -Dale
     
  4. Dec 13, 2005 #3

    dnt

    User Avatar

    so it should be choice b?
     
  5. Dec 13, 2005 #4

    HallsofIvy

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    Assuming you are using the principle roots, yes.
     
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