1984 AIME Problems/Problem 8

Revision as of 13:24, 6 May 2007 by I_like_pie (talk | contribs) (See also)


The equation $\displaystyle z^6+z^3+1$ has complex roots with argument $\theta$ between $90^\circ$ and $180^\circ$ in thet complex plane. Determine the degree measure of $\theta$.


If $r$ is a root of $z^6+z^3+1$, then $0=(r^3-1)(r^6+r^3+1)=r^9-1$. The polynomial $x^9-1$ has all of its roots with absolute value 1 and argument of the form $40m^\circ$ for integer $m$.

This reduces $\theta$ to either 120 or 160. But $\theta$ can't be 120 because if $r=\cos 120^\circ +i\sin 120^\circ$, then $r^3=1$ and $r^6+r^3+1=3$, a contradiction. This leaves $\theta=160$.

See also

1984 AIME (ProblemsAnswer KeyResources)
Preceded by
Problem 7
Followed by
Problem 9
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
All AIME Problems and Solutions
Invalid username
Login to AoPS