Confused about simple max{,} notation

1. May 7, 2012

dtessela

I'm working on a project that required me to go through the literature to find some information on Compton and Rayleigh scattering. I came across a key expression, part of it which read:

max{ f(x,Z), g(x,Z) } if Z > 10 and f(x,Z) < 2

where f(x,Z) and g(x,Z) are known functions.
The problem is I don't understand the max{f(x,Z),g(x,Z)} notation. I have done some poking around on the interwebs but nothing really helpful has come up.

Thanks for future help!

D

2. May 7, 2012

Staff: Mentor

It's the largest value of f and g, where Z > 10 and f(x, Z) < 2.

3. May 9, 2012

Diffy

Here are some examples for you:

max{10, 3} = 10
max{-1, -100} = -1

if x = 30*3 and y = 40! and z = 40^2

then max{x, y, z} = y

if f(x) = 2x + 10 and g(x) = x^3

then when x = 1

max{f(x), g(x)} = f(x)

4. May 9, 2012

HallsofIvy

Notice that max{a, b} applied to numbers a and b. max{f(x), g(x)} is actually a function, h(x), that, to each value of x, gives the larger of the two numbers f(x) and g(x) for that particular x.

5. May 9, 2012

dtessela

Thanks, that helped clear it up!