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 September 6th, 2019, 03:08 PM #1 Newbie   Joined: Sep 2019 From: Georgia, USA Posts: 2 Thanks: 0 Finding the Zeros of This Function Hi, Any ideas on how to algebraically find the zeros of this function? $\displaystyle f(x) = 0.0002x^3 - 0.08x^2 - 5,000$ I can graph the function and see that it has a zero at x = 500, however, how can I analytically solve for that value? Is there a trick to factoring a polynomial like this? September 6th, 2019, 07:38 PM #2 Global Moderator   Joined: May 2007 Posts: 6,852 Thanks: 743 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cubic_function Above describes solution method. September 7th, 2019, 06:23 AM #3 Math Team   Joined: Dec 2013 From: Colombia Posts: 7,697 Thanks: 2681 Math Focus: Mainly analysis and algebra $\displaystyle f(x) = 0.0002x^3 - 0.08x^2 - 5,000=\frac1{5000}(x^3-400x^2-25000000)$ Then attack it with the factor theorem. If you use the graph too (a perfectly valid approach), it's very easy to find the root at 500, the factor theorem validates it. Thanks from topsquark September 7th, 2019, 07:48 AM #4 Senior Member   Joined: Oct 2009 Posts: 906 Thanks: 354 Try the rational root theorem. September 12th, 2019, 12:51 PM #5 Newbie   Joined: Sep 2019 From: Georgia, USA Posts: 2 Thanks: 0 Finding Zeros Thanks to all for the responses. However, I am still unable to factor: $\displaystyle f(x) = \frac{1}{5,000}(x^3 -400x^2 + 25,000,000)$ Can anyone show the steps? September 12th, 2019, 01:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
 Originally Posted by danabner Thanks to all for the responses. However, I am still unable to factor: $\displaystyle f(x) = \frac{1}{5,000}(x^3 -400x^2 - 25,000,000)$
Gah! That positive in your last post screwed me up for a while. According to the rational root theorem any possible rational solution will be of the form $\displaystyle \pm \dfrac{\text{ Some factor of 25000000}}{1}$

The only thing to do here is find all the factors 25000000 and do some plug'n'chug on it.

You can do it by Cardano's method as mathman suggested. It's more satisfying than factoring 25000000 but the method is not for the squeemish.

-Dan

Last edited by topsquark; September 12th, 2019 at 01:28 PM. Tags finding, function, zeros Thread Tools Show Printable Version Email this Page Display Modes Linear Mode Switch to Hybrid Mode Switch to Threaded Mode Similar Threads Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post mathgeek83 Pre-Calculus 3 November 12th, 2018 07:21 PM rachelelizabethP Algebra 2 October 10th, 2013 09:39 AM daigo Algebra 4 June 26th, 2012 01:19 PM stainsoftime Algebra 1 December 15th, 2008 12:40 AM jokerthief Algebra 3 November 4th, 2007 03:52 PM

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