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Eigenvalues lambda question

  1. Jun 25, 2008 #1
    Assuming 2 by 2.

    Ok, I'm asked to find the Eigenvalues. How do I know which should be lambda 1 and lambda 2? I can find the lambda's easily, but does it matter which is 1 or 2? It becomes important when I'm asked to diagonalize.

    [tex]A=S\Lambda S^{-1}[/tex]
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2008
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 25, 2008 #2

    matt grime

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    Re: Eigenvalues

    The order is not important when you diagonalize.
  4. Jun 25, 2008 #3
    Re: Eigenvalues

    Thanks matt! Now I can go back to studying :)
  5. Jun 25, 2008 #4


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    Re: Eigenvalues

    Swapping [itex]\lambda_1[/itex] and [itex]\lambda_2[/itex] will swap their positions on the diagonal but either way is a valid diagonalization.
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