Complex no. query (1 Viewer)

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the first two parts of this question are easy to prove:

1 + cosy/2+ cos(2y)/4 + cos(3y)/8 ......... =(4-2cosy)/(5-4cosy)

this can be done using infinite geometric series, and taking the real part.

Then cos(4y) =8({(cosy)^4} -{(cosy)^2}) + 1

which can be done using double angle formulae.

Now we need to solve

x^4 - x^2 + 1/16 = 0

This can be done easily using complex no's, but I'm not sure how to do it using the previous results. I've tried setting cos(4y) = 1/16, and then letting x=cosy, but I end up with some horrible expression involving cos(0.25*arcos(1/16)) which is obviously not what I'm supposed to get.

Thanks
 

CarlB

Science Advisor
Homework Helper
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Try putting [tex]\cos(4y) = 1/2[/tex].

Carl
 

Hurkyl

Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Gold Member
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You notice that:

(cos y)^4 - (cos y)^2 + (1/8)(1 - cos 4y) = 0?
 
75
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thanks v. much. i was probably suffering some sort of miniature brain death by putting cosy = 1/16 (instead of cosy = 1/2!) The trig solution and the completing the square solutions match up as well, so it all work out.
 

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