Imaginary Numbers Essay

1097 Words5 Pages
How far does imaginary numbers go back in history? First must know that an imaginary number is a number that is expressed in terms of the square root of a negative number. This fact took several centuries of convincing for certain mathematicians to believe, but imaginary numbers have been used all the back to the first century, and is now being widely used by people all around the world to this day. It is thanks to people like Heron of Alexandria, Girolamo Cardano, Rafael Bombelli, and other mathematician’s for making imaginary numbers as impactful as they are being used for signal processing, control theory, electromagnetism, quantum mechanics, cartography, vibration analysis, and many others. While not as impactful as the people after him, Heron of Alexandra was one of the first to mention imaginary numbers dating all the way back to the 1st century. Hero of Alexandria was not only a mathematician but an engineer as well and he was considered the greatest experimenter of antiquity at the time. In 50 A.D. he studied the volume of an impossible section of a pyramid, and what it unworkable was the problem √81-114. This problem produces the result √-63, but without any clear understanding in his logic Heron simply wrote √63; this answer might have…show more content…
Shaw, Amanda. “God and Imaginary Numbers.” First Things, 13 Sept. 7ADAD, www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2007/09/god-and-imaginary-numbers. Spencer, Philip. “Complex Numbers in Real Life.” University of Toronto Mathematics Network, 19 Apr. 1999, www.math.toronto.edu/mathnet/questionCorner/complexinlife.html. Jones, Bob. The Guardian, Guardian News and Media, www.theguardian.com/notesandqueries/query/0,5753,-18864,00.html. Lasenby, Joan. “Maths Goes to the Movies.” Maths Goes to the Movies, Plus Magazine, 1 Mar. 2007,
Open Document