# trace

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• Does the Trace Commute with Matrix Multiplication? Is $\tr (A B) = \tr (A) \tr (B)$? Let $A$ and $B$ be $n \times n$ matrices. Is it always true that $\tr (A B) = \tr (A) \tr (B)$? If it is true, prove it. If not, give a counterexample.   Solution. There are many counterexamples. For one, take $A = \begin{bmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 0 […] • Express the Eigenvalues of a 2 by 2 Matrix in Terms of the Trace and Determinant Let A=\begin{bmatrix} a & b\\ c& d \end{bmatrix} be an 2\times 2 matrix. Express the eigenvalues of A in terms of the trace and the determinant of A. Solution. Recall the definitions of the trace and determinant of A: \[\tr(A)=a+d \text{ and } […] • Is the Trace of the Transposed Matrix the Same as the Trace of the Matrix? Let A be an n \times n matrix. Is it true that \tr ( A^\trans ) = \tr(A)? If it is true, prove it. If not, give a counterexample. Solution. The answer is true. Recall that the transpose of a matrix is the sum of its diagonal entries. Also, note that the […] • If Two Matrices are Similar, then their Determinants are the Same Prove that if A and B are similar matrices, then their determinants are the same. Proof. Suppose that A and B are similar. Then there exists a nonsingular matrix S such that \[S^{-1}AS=B$ by definition. Then we […]
• An Example of a Matrix that Cannot Be a Commutator Let $I$ be the $2\times 2$ identity matrix. Then prove that $-I$ cannot be a commutator $[A, B]:=ABA^{-1}B^{-1}$ for any $2\times 2$ matrices $A$ and $B$ with determinant $1$.   Proof. Assume that $[A, B]=-I$. Then $ABA^{-1}B^{-1}=-I$ implies $ABA^{-1}=-B. […] • If 2 by 2 Matrices Satisfy A=AB-BA, then A^2 is Zero Matrix Let A, B be complex 2\times 2 matrices satisfying the relation \[A=AB-BA.$ Prove that $A^2=O$, where $O$ is the $2\times 2$ zero matrix.   Hint. Find the trace of $A$. Use the Cayley-Hamilton theorem Proof. We first calculate the […]
• Matrix $XY-YX$ Never Be the Identity Matrix Let $I$ be the $n\times n$ identity matrix, where $n$ is a positive integer. Prove that there are no $n\times n$ matrices $X$ and $Y$ such that $XY-YX=I.$   Hint. Suppose that such matrices exist and consider the trace of the matrix $XY-YX$. Recall that the trace of […]
• Matrices Satisfying $HF-FH=-2F$ Let $F$ and $H$ be an $n\times n$ matrices satisfying the relation $HF-FH=-2F.$ (a) Find the trace of the matrix $F$. (b) Let $\lambda$ be an eigenvalue of $H$ and let $\mathbf{v}$ be an eigenvector corresponding to $\lambda$. Show that there exists an positive integer $N$ […]

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