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how to solve quadratic equation?

Asked by bsd
on 8 Nov 2011


How could I solve a quadratic equation in matlab? Looking for your reply.




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2 Answers

Answer by Walter Roberson
on 8 Nov 2011
 Accepted answer

roots(). Or if you have the symbolic toolbox, solve()


And note that any root that is output might be complex. If you want only the real roots, filter to TheRoots(imag(TheRoots)==0)

why is that == 0 used?


You can tell whether a number has a complex part or not by testing to see if the imaginary part is 0. imag(x) gives you the imaginary part of x, so imag(x)==0 tests whether the imaginary part is 0. TheRoots(imag(TheRoots)==0) thus selects only the roots which are real-valued with no imaginary component.

Of course for a quadratic function over real coefficients, either _neither_ root is complex or _both_ roots are complex...

Answer by Rick Rosson
on 8 Nov 2011

Please try:

   x = zeros(2,1);
   d = sqrt(b^2 - 4*a*c);
   x(1) = ( -b + d ) / (2*a);
   x(2) = ( -b - d ) / (2*a);




Beware a = 0 !

If a = 0, then it is not (strictly speaking) a quadratic equation. It's a linear equation, and the solution in that case is trivial to compute.

Yes, but it is not an uncommon problem for people to calculate or randomly generate the coefficients and forget to double-check that the system is still of the same order.

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