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characteristic equation

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noun
Mathematics.
  1. the characteristic polynomial of a given matrix, equated to zero.
  2. Also called auxiliary equation. an equation with one variable and equated to zero, which is derived from a given linear differential equation and in which the coefficient and power of the variable in each term correspond to the coefficient and order of a derivative in the original equation.
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Origin of characteristic equation

First recorded in 1920–25
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

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