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Z axis imaginary number?

  1. Jan 13, 2015 #1
    If I understand correctly an imaginary number can be graphically shown in a x/y axis graph. Are there numbers that can only be graphed by using the third z axis? What are they called?

  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 13, 2015 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    In the complex plane (also called the Argand plane), the horizontal axis is for the real component of a complex number, and the vertical axis is for the imaginary component. A purely imaginary number is represented by a point directly above or directly below the origin.
    I don't believe so. There are numbers called quaternions that require four dimensions to graph -- one real dimension and three imaginary dimensions. An example of a quaternion is w = 2 + 1i - 2j + 3k, where i, j, and k are imaginary units.
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