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Dictionary


characteris'tic equa'tion




1. Math.
a. the characteristic polynomial of a given matrix, equated to zero.
b. 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.
2. Physics.See equation of state.

Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.

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