Difference between revisions of "2010 AIME II Problems/Problem 6"

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(Solution)
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==Solution==
 
==Solution==
You can always factor a polynomial into quadratic factors.
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You can factor the polynomial into two quadratic factors or a linear and a cubic factor.
  
Let <math>x^2+ax+b</math> and <math>x^2+cx+d</math> be the two quadratics, so that
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For two quadratic factors, let <math>x^2+ax+b</math> and <math>x^2+cx+d</math> be the two quadratics, so that
  
 
<cmath>(x^2 + ax + b )(x^2 + cx + d) = x^4 + (a + c)x^3 + (b + d + ac)x^2 + (ad + bc)x + bd.</cmath>
 
<cmath>(x^2 + ax + b )(x^2 + cx + d) = x^4 + (a + c)x^3 + (b + d + ac)x^2 + (ad + bc)x + bd.</cmath>
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Therefore, again setting coefficients equal, <math>a + c = 0\Longrightarrow a=-c</math>, <math>b + d + ac = 0\Longrightarrow b+d=a^2</math> , <math>ad + bc = - n</math>, and so <math>bd = 63</math>.
 
Therefore, again setting coefficients equal, <math>a + c = 0\Longrightarrow a=-c</math>, <math>b + d + ac = 0\Longrightarrow b+d=a^2</math> , <math>ad + bc = - n</math>, and so <math>bd = 63</math>.
  
Since <math>b+d=a^2</math>, the only possible values for <math>(b,d)</math> are <math>(1,63)</math> and <math>(7,9)</math>. From this we find that the possible values for <math>n</math> are <math>\pm 8 \cdot 62</math> and <math>\pm 4 \cdot 2</math>. Therefore, the answer is <math>\boxed{008}</math>.
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Since <math>b+d=a^2</math>, the only possible values for <math>(b,d)</math> are <math>(1,63)</math> and <math>(7,9)</math>. From this we find that the possible values for <math>n</math> are <math>\pm 8 \cdot 62</math> and <math>\pm 4 \cdot 2</math>.  
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For the case of one linear and one cubic factor, doing a similar expansion and matching of the coefficients gives the smallest <math>n</math> in that case to be <math>48</math>.
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Therefore, the answer is <math>\boxed{008}</math>.
  
 
== See also ==
 
== See also ==

Revision as of 14:06, 30 July 2017

Problem

Find the smallest positive integer $n$ with the property that the polynomial $x^4 - nx + 63$ can be written as a product of two nonconstant polynomials with integer coefficients.

Solution

You can factor the polynomial into two quadratic factors or a linear and a cubic factor.

For two quadratic factors, let $x^2+ax+b$ and $x^2+cx+d$ be the two quadratics, so that

\[(x^2 + ax + b )(x^2 + cx + d) = x^4 + (a + c)x^3 + (b + d + ac)x^2 + (ad + bc)x + bd.\]

Therefore, again setting coefficients equal, $a + c = 0\Longrightarrow a=-c$, $b + d + ac = 0\Longrightarrow b+d=a^2$ , $ad + bc = - n$, and so $bd = 63$.

Since $b+d=a^2$, the only possible values for $(b,d)$ are $(1,63)$ and $(7,9)$. From this we find that the possible values for $n$ are $\pm 8 \cdot 62$ and $\pm 4 \cdot 2$.

For the case of one linear and one cubic factor, doing a similar expansion and matching of the coefficients gives the smallest $n$ in that case to be $48$.

Therefore, the answer is $\boxed{008}$.

See also

2010 AIME II (ProblemsAnswer KeyResources)
Preceded by
Problem 5
Followed by
Problem 7
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15
All AIME Problems and Solutions

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