Matrices and Fourth Dimension ```Name: N. Status: student Age: N/A Location: N/A Country: N/A Date: 12/8/2004 ``` Question: How can matrices relate to the 4th dimension? Replies: A matrix is a set of numbers in a pattern that relates one set of dimensions to another. A 4-by-4 matrix can transform one 4 dimensional quantity (a space-time vector) into another. It can also be used as part of a relationship between two 4 dimensional objects, acting very much like a fancy multiplication. Because matrices are a general mathematical form, they can actually relate to anything that is at least two-dimensional. Dr. Ken Mellendorf Physics Instructor Illinois Central College They are only loosely connected. A matrix is a mathematical entity: an array of numbers containing 'n' rows and 'm' columns that obeys certain algebraic rules of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. The algebra of matrices makes them useful in a wide variety of applications in the physical sciences and engineering. There is no special connection to the dimensionality of a space. Vince Calder Click here to return to the Mathematics Archives

NEWTON is an electronic community for Science, Math, and Computer Science K-12 Educators, sponsored and operated by Argonne National Laboratory's Educational Programs, Andrew Skipor, Ph.D., Head of Educational Programs.

For assistance with NEWTON contact a System Operator (help@newton.dep.anl.gov), or at Argonne's Educational Programs