# Difference between revisions of "2019 AMC 8 Problems/Problem 20"

## Problem 20

How many different real numbers $x$ satisfy the equation $$(x^{2}-5)^{2}=16?$$

$\textbf{(A) }0\qquad\textbf{(B) }1\qquad\textbf{(C) }2\qquad\textbf{(D) }4\qquad\textbf{(E) }8$

## Solution

We have that $(x^2-5)^2 = 16$ if and only if $x^2-5 = \pm 4$. If $x^2-5 = 4$, then $x^2 = 9 \implies x = \pm 3$, giving 2 solutions. If $x^2-5 = -4$, then $x^2 = 1 \implies x = \pm 1$, giving 2 more solutions. All four of these solutions work, so the answer is $\boxed{\textbf{(D)} 4}$. Further, the equation is a quartic in $x$, so by the Fundamental Theorem of Algebra, there can be at most four real solutions.