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Complex data type support for dlarray

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Yuanlong Zhang
Yuanlong Zhang on 21 Jun 2020
Commented: Christine Tobler on 26 Jun 2020
Hi guys,
I am wondering if it is possible to get complex variable type supported in dlarray. Currently I try to use the auto-differentiation method of matlab r2020a to optimize an optical system, but I find it would not allow me use variables as complex type for dlarray. I would like to request adding the complex type support for dlarray since it is quite common in optical optimization fields (see this paper This feature is already fullfilled by Tensorflow so I would guess it would also be possible for matlab to get it? Much thanks if you guys can expand dlarrary support list in the future.


Christine Tobler
Christine Tobler on 24 Jun 2020
Hi Yuanlong,
If you have a bit of time, could you give some more details about operations you would need to support complex numbers? For example, would you need some of the Deep Learning Operations category, or just the basic operations for dlarray to support complex numbers? Are there other methods not currently supported by dlarray that you would need to work with complex numbers?
Yuanlong Zhang
Yuanlong Zhang on 26 Jun 2020
Hi Tobler,
I think most of the operations I need (and many physicists needs) would be basic operators, e.g. plus minus, multiply, dot product, and exponential. Currently I have made some functions to help calculate these operations with separable real and imaginary parts, e.g. two dlarrays (real and imaginary parts of a complex variable) are passed to one of these operators for calculation, and then the returned variables are also separated into real and imaginary parts. This method can work but would made the code much more redundant. So I would imagine if MATLB has such built-in capacity for these types of calculation it would make the life much easier.
For me I didn't find other necessary methods that do not support complex numbers.
Christine Tobler
Christine Tobler on 26 Jun 2020
Thank you for the detailed response, this was very helpful!

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Answers (1)

Raunak Gupta
Raunak Gupta on 24 Jun 2020
The feature of using complex data type in dlarray is not supported as of now. I have brought this issue to notice of the concerned people and it might be considered in any future release.




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