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# Surds, Indices and Logarithm Surds, Indices and Logarithm

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MAT 163

## Surds, Indices, and Logarithms Radical

For all real x, y > 0 , and all integers a > 0 ,
a

x = y if and only if x = y a

where a
x

Surds
A number which can be expressed as a fraction of integers (assuming the denominator is never 0) 5 4 is called a rational number. Examples of rational numbers are , and 2. 2 5 A number which cannot be expressed as a fraction of two integers is called an irrational number. Examples of irrational numbers are 2 , 3 7 and .
An irrational number involving a root is called a surd. Surds occur frequently in trigonometry, calculus and coordinate geometry. Usually, the exact value of a surd cannot be determined but an approximate value of it can be found by using calculators or mathematical tables. In this chapter, a means the positive square root of a while a means the negative square root of a.

## General Rules of Surds

Multiplication of surds
a b = ab For example (i)

(ii) (iii)

3 12 = 3 12 = 36 = 6 32 2 = 32 2 = 64 = 8 5 5 = 5 5 = 25 = 5

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## For example (i)

72 2 =

(ii)

72 = 36 = 6 2 45 45 5 = = 9 =3 5

These rules are useful for simplifying two or more surds of for combining them into one single surd. Note, however, that 3 + 6 3 + 6 and 6 2 6 2 which can be easily checked by a calculator; and, therefore, in general a + b a + b and a b a b .
Example 1 (i) 3 5 + 5 = (3 + 1) 5

(ii)

40 = 4 10 = 4 10 = 2 10

=4 5
Example 2 Simplify

(i) (ii)

243 12 + 2 75 50 + 8 + 32

## Solution: (i) 243 12 + 2 75 = 81 3 4 3 + 2 25 3

= 81 3 4 3 + 2 25 3 = 9 3 2 3 + 10 3 = (9 2 + 10) 3
= 17 3 (ii) 50 + 8 + 32 = 25 2 + 4 2 + 16 2 = 25 2 + 4 2 + 16 2

= 5 2 + 2 2 + 4 2 = (5 + 2 + 4) 2 = 11 2
Try This 1 Simplify

(i)

27

## (ii) 28 175 + 112

(iii)

5 125 8

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MAT 163

## Rationalization of the Denominator

When a fraction has a surd in its denominator, e.g.

3 , it is usual to eliminate the surd in the 2 denominator. In fact, the writing of surds in the denominators of fractions should be avoided. The process of removing this surd is called rationalizing of the denominator.

m + n and m n are specially related surds known as conjugate surds. The product of conjugate surds is always a rational number.
( m + n )( m n ) = ( m )2 ( n ) 2 = m n For example ( 9 + 5)( 9 5) = ( 9)2 ( 5) 2 = 9 5 = 4 ( 7 + 3)( 7 3) = ( 7)2 ( 3)2 = 7 3 = 4

Example 3 5 Simplify . 3
Solution: 5 5 3 = 3 3 3
= 5 3 3

Example 4
Simplify 4 . 7+ 3

Solution: 4 4 7 3 = 7+ 3 7+ 3 7 3
= 4( 7 3) 73 = 7 3

Example 5
Simplify, without using tables or calculators, the value of 1 1 . + 3 2 3+ 2

## Solution: 1 1 (3 + 2) (3 2) + = + 3 2 3 + 2 (3 2)(3 + 2) (3 + 2)(3 2)

(3 + 2) + (3 2) 92 6 = 7

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MAT 163

## Try This 2 Simplify (i)

3 12

(ii)

1 3+ 7

(iii)

7 +2 7 2

1. (i) (ii)
(iii)

3 3 7

2.

(i) (ii)
(iii)

50 2

3 2 7 3 4 11 + 4 7 3

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MAT 163

Indices
If a positive integer a is multiplied by itself three times, we get a3 , i.e. a a a = a 3 . Here a is called the base and 3, the index or power. Thus a 4 means the 4th power of a. In general, a n means the nth power of a, where n is any positive index of the positive integer a.

Rules of Indices
There are several important rules to remember when dealing with indices. If a, b, m and n are positive integers, then (1) (2)

am an = am + n am an = am n
(a m )n = a m n a m b m = ( a b) m
a a b = b
m m m

e.g.

## 35 38 = 313 514 53 = 511

(52 )6 = 512 35 25 = 65
5 5 3 = 3
4 4 4

e.g.
e.g. e.g.

(3)
(4)

(5)

e.g.

(6) (7)

a0 = 1
an =
1 an
m an

e.g.
1 an e.g.

50 = 1
5 3 =
1 83
2 3 8

1 53

(8) (9)

= a
n

e.g.
m n m

=38
= 3 82 = ( 3 8)2

= a = ( a)
n

e.g.

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## MAT 163 Example 1 Evaluate Solution: (i)

(ii)

1 83

(iii)

3 16 4

(iv)

25

3 2

(i)

1 1 = 3= 8 2

(ii)

1 83

=38=2

3 2

(iii)

3 4 16

= ( 16)
4

(iv)

25

=
=

1
3 25 2

= 23

=8

1 ( 25)3 1 1 = 3= 5 125

## Try This 1 Evaluate each of the following without using a calculator

(i) (v)

(ii) (vi)

17

(iii) (vii)

3 49 2

(iv)
4 3

2 3
2

3 5 243

1 814

1 27

(viii)

1 4

Example 2
1 2 1

Simplify
Solution:

(i)

a3 a5 a2

(ii)

(a 3b 2 )4

(iii)

a 5 a 2 ( a 1 ) 2

(i)

1 a3

2 5 a

1 a2

(ii)

(a b )

3 2 4 34 24

(iii)

a a
5 1 a3 1 a3

1 1 2 (a )

1 2 1 + a3 5 2 7 30

=a

= =

2 a5 2 a5

a a

1 2 1 2

=a

=a b

12 8

=a =a
Try This 2 Simplify each of the following, giving your answer in index form:
(i)

1 2 1 + 3 5 2

17 30

a 3 a 4 a 2

(ii)

16a

5 2

4a

3 2

(iii)

(a 3 b 5 )15

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MAT 163

## Solving Exponential Equations

Example 3 Solve the following exponential equations (ii) (i) 2 x = 32 4 x + 1 = 0.25 Solution: (i) 2 x = 32
2 x = 25

(ii)

x = 5

4 x + 1 = 0.25 1 4x + 1 = 4 x +1 4 = 4 1 x + 1 = 1 x = 2

## Try This 3 Solve the following equations:

(i) (iv) 3x = 81 5x = 1 (ii) (v) 32 x = 8 34 x = 27 x + 3 (iii) (vi) 7x = 1 49 x 4 32 x = 6

## Example 4 Solve the equation 22 x + 3 + 2 x + 3 = 1 + 2 x . Solution: 22 x + 3 + 2 x + 3 = 1 + 2 x 2 x 2 x 23 + 2 x 23 = 1 + 2 x Let y = 2 x

8 y2 + 8 y = 1 + y

8 y2 + 7 y 1 = 0 (8 y 1)( y + 1) = 0 1 y = or 1 8 1 When y= 8 1 2x = 8 x 2 = 2 3 x = 3

when y = 1

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## MAT 163 Try This 4 Solve the equation 32 x + 1 + 9 = 3x + 3 + 3x .

Example 5
1 If 3x 92 y = 27 and 2 x 4 y = , calculate the values of x and y. 8

Solution: 3x 92 y = 27 1 2 x 4 y = 8
From (1):

(1)
(2)

3x (32 ) 2 y = 33 3x 34 y = 33 3x + 4 y = 33 x + 4y = 3

(3)

From (2):

2 x (22 ) y = 2 x 2 2 y

1 23 = 23 (4)

2 x 2 y = 2 3 x 2 y = 3

(3) (4) :

6y = 6 y =1 x + 4(1) = 3 x = 1

## Substitute y = 1 into (3):

x = 1 and y = 1 .

## Try This 5 Solve the simultaneous equations

3x + y = 243 ,

22 x 5 y = 8

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1 7 27
a9

1
3

## (iii) (vii) (iii)

3 5

343 81

(iv) (viii)

1 4 16

4 a x=

a 5b 6

3.

(i)
(iv)

x=4

(ii) (v)

(iii) (vi)

x = 2

x=0

x=9

x=

1 2

4. 5.

x = 1 or 2

x = 4, y = 1

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MAT 163

Logarithms
Definition: For any number y such that y = a x ( a > 0 and a 1 ), the logarithm of y to the base a is defined to be x and is denoted by log a y . Thus if y = a x , then log a y = x For example,

81 = 34 100 = 10
2

## log 3 81 = 4 log10 100 = 2

Note: The logarithm of 1 to any base is 0, i.e. log a 1 = 0 . The logarithm of a number to a base of the same number is 1, i.e. log a a = 1 . The logarithm of a negative number is undefined.
Example 1 Find the value of

(i) (iii)

log 2 64 1 log 3 9

(ii) (iv)

log9 3
log8 0.25

## Solution: (i) Let log 2 64 = x

64 = 2 26 = 2 x x = 6
x

(ii)

Let log 9 3 = x 3 = 9x 3 = 32 x 1 = 2x 1 x = 2

(iii)

Let log 3

1 =x 9 1 = 3x 9

(iv)

## Let log8 0.25 = x 0.25 = 8 x 1 = 23 x 4 2 2 = 23 x 3x = 2 2 x = 3

32 = 3x
x = 2

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MAT 163

Laws of Logarithms
(1) (2) log a mn = log a m + log a n
log a m = log a m log a n n

e.g.
e.g.

## log3 5 + log 3 2 = log 3 10

(3)

log a m p = p log a m

e.g.

## 5 log3 5 + log 3 4 = log 3 4 2 log10 5 = 2 log10 5

Example 2
Without using tables, evaluate log10 41 41 + log10 70 log10 + 2 log10 5 . 35 2

## = log10 102 = 2 log10 10 =2

Try This 1 Simplify 2 log 3 5 log 3 10 + 3log 3 4 .

## Changing the Base of Logarithms

Logarithms to base 10 such as log10 5 and log10 ( x + 1) are called common logarithms. An alternative form of writing log10 5 is lg 5 .Common logarithms can be evaluated using a scientific calculator. Logarithms to base e such as log e 3 and log e x are called Natural logarithms or Napierian logarithms. Natural logarithms are usually written in an alternative form, for example, log e 3 is written as ln 3 . (Note: e = 2.718... )
If a, b, and c are positive numbers and a 1 , then log a b = log c b . log c a

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log5 16 =

## Solving Logarithmic Equations

Example 4 Solve the equation 3x = 18 . Solution: 3x = 18 Taking logarithms to base 10 on both sides, log10 3x = log10 18 x log10 3 = log10 18 log10 18 1.2553 x= = log10 3 0.4771 = 2.631 Try This 3 Solve the equation 5 x + 1 = 30 . Example 5 Given that log10 4 + 2 log10 p = 2 , calculate the value of p without using tables or calculators.

## Solution: log10 4 + 2 log10 p = 2

log10 (4 p 2 ) = 2

## 4 p 2 = 102 100 p2 = 4 2 p = 25 p = 5 Since p cannot be 5 because log10 (5) is not defined, p = 5 .

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3x + 1 = 3. 2x 7

## Example 6 Solve the equation log10 (3x + 2) 2 log10 x = 1 log10 (5 x 3) . Solution:

log10 (3x + 2) 2 log10 x = 1 log10 (5 x 3)

log10 (3 x + 2) log10 x 2 + log10 (5 x 3) = 1 (3x + 2)(5 x 3) log10 =1 x2 (3 x + 2)(5 x 3) = 101 2 x 2 15 x 9 x + 10 x 6 = 10 x 2 5x2 + x 6 = 0 (5 x + 6)( x 1) = 0 6 x = or x = 1 5
Since x cannot be negative, x = 1 .
Try This 5 Solve the equation log 2 x 2 = 4 + log 2 ( x 3) .

## Answers to Try This 1. log3 160 2. 2.877 3. x = 1.113 57 4. x= 13 5. x = 4 or 12.

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