A linear system of two equations in three unknowns can not have exactly one solution.True or False?

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- Feb 19th 2013, 06:11 PMCivy71True or False
A linear system of two equations in three unknowns can not have exactly one solution.

**True or False**? - Feb 19th 2013, 09:24 PMibduttRe: True or False
Think like this, we can find the values of variables if the number of equations and number of variables is same.

- Feb 19th 2013, 11:27 PMDevenoRe: True or False
rather than give a "formal" answer i'll give an "informal one". one can think of the dimension of a vector space as quantifying its "size" in some sense. a system of two equations in 3 unknowns is equivalent to a 2x3 matrix, which takes your inputs (the 3 unknowns) and spits out two numbers (the two equations evaluated at the inputs).

so we have a mapping from a three-dimensional space to a two-dimensional one. this can't happen without at least one dimension "collapsing" down to 0. the dimension(s) that collapses is some line in the three-dimension space that gets mapped to a single point (the origin of the two-dimensional space). this is a many-to-one operation, which is NOT uniquely reversible.

all of this can be formalized by using the concepts of rank, linear independence and spanning set, but the "idea" is what i just said above. - Feb 20th 2013, 06:43 AMHartlwRe: True or False
- Feb 20th 2013, 07:16 AMtejasnatuRe: True or False
The rank of augmented matrix A:B and A have to be same(=r say) for solution to exist, if r=n unique solution, r<n, infinitely many solutions . In case of 2 equations and 3 variables the rank of augmented matrix and matrix A can be at the most 2 wich is less than 3, so infinitely many solutions exist wich can be found out by putting one unknown equal to a parameter and finding other unknowns in terms of that parameter.

- Feb 20th 2013, 07:44 AMHartlwRe: True or False
ax + by + cz = d is only valid if d is a LC of a,b and c.

rank is less transparent and more wordy (in my opinion).