# Thread: help me solve this problem

1. ## help me solve this problem

prove that if n is a perfect square, then n+2 is not a perfect square.

I approached this way:
hypothesis: n+2=k^2
conclusion: n=k;

But i tried both direct and indirect proof, but neither works. Or my approach is not right? pls help

2. Hello, zpwnchen!

Prove that if $n$ is a perfect square, then $n+2$ is not a perfect square.

$n$ is a perfect square: . $n \:=\:a^2\,\text{ for some positive integer }n.$

Suppose $n+2$ is a perfect square: . $n+2 \:=\:b^2\,\text{ for some positive integer }b.$

We have: . $\begin{array}{c}n \:=\:a^2 \\ n \:=\:b^2-2 \end{array}$

Then: . $a^2 \:=\:b^2-2 \quad\Rightarrow\quad b^2 - a^2 \:=\:2 \quad\Rightarrow\quad (b-a)(b+a) \:=\:1\!\cdot\!2$

We have a system of equations: . $\begin{array}{ccc}b-a &=& 1 \\ b+a &=& 2\end{array}$

. . which has the solution: . $a \:=\:\tfrac{1}{2},\:b \:=\:\tfrac{3}{2}$

But $a\text{ and }b$ are integers . . . We have reached a contradiction.

Therefore. $n + 2$ is not a perfect square.

3. Thank you so much!

Can we say that n=a^2 where a is 1/2. therefore, n is not a perfect. we reached a contradiction?

Can we use direct or indirect proof for it?