If lcm(a,b) = ab, why is gcd(a,b) = 1?

  • Thread starter Scootertaj
  • Start date
  • #1
1. If lcm(a,b)=ab, show that gcd(a,b) = 1

Homework Equations

We can't use the fact that lcm(a,b) = ab / gcd(a,b)

The Attempt at a Solution

I've already shown that gcd(a,b) = 1 → lcm(a,b) = ab but I can't figure out the other direction!

Any hints?
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  • #2
[itex]lcm[a,b]=\prod p_i^{\max{\alpha_i,\beta_i}}[/itex]

Where [itex]a=\prod p_i^{\alpha_i}[/itex]

and [itex]b=\prod p_i^{\beta_i}[/itex]

And the gcd is the min.

Use that fact.
  • #3
We haven't really used that notation. I imagine it deals with divisibility rules just like the other direction.
  • #4
I think one way to approach it is to prove the contrapositive. If c is an integer not equal to 1 that divides a and divides b, then a = mc and b = nc for positive integers m and n. Then see if you can show that lcm (a,b) is not ab.
  • #5
Awesome, got it, thanks!

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