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49
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11answers
4k views

Why certain diophantine equations are interesting (and others are not) ?

It is quite clear why certain differential equations, among the jungle of possible diff equations that is possible to conceive, are studied: some come from physical problems, or from "spontaneous" ...
41
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the geometry of an undecidable diophantine equation?

As an arithmetic algebraic geometer of the highest moral fiber, I am trained to look at Diophantine equations in terms of the geometry of the corresponding scheme. For instance, if the Diophantine ...
31
votes
1answer
1k views

On a remark of Tait on FLT for the exponent 3

This is one of those recreational questions that aren't really about research. I found a curious remark in an old volume of American Mathematical Monthly (1922) which I'll quote below: In the ...
31
votes
1answer
2k views

Infinitely many solutions of a diophantine equation

If $P(x,y,...,z)$ is a polynomial with integer coefficients then every integer solution of $P=0$ corresponds to a homomorphism from $\mathbb{Z}[x,y,...,z]/(P)$ to $\mathbb{Z}$. So there are infinitely ...
28
votes
3answers
1k views

A binomial generalization of the FLT: Bombieri's Napkin Problem

This is an extract from Apéry's biography (which some of the people have already enjoyed in this answer). During a mathematician's dinner in Kingston, Canada, in 1979, the conversation turned ...
27
votes
4answers
2k views

Can the difference of two distinct Fibonacci numbers be a square infinitely often?

Can the difference of two distinct Fibonacci numbers be a square infinitely often? There are few solutions with indices $<10^{4}$ the largest two being $F_{14}-F_{13}=12^2$ and ...
27
votes
6answers
919 views

Patterns among integer-distance points

Mark each point of $\mathbb{N}^2$ ($\mathbb{N}$ the natural numbers) if its Euclidean distance from the origin is an integer. One obtains a plot like this, symmetric about the $45^\circ$ diagonal. ...
25
votes
2answers
908 views

Does Fermat's last theorem hold in the ordinals?

My question is whether there are no nontrivial solutions in the ordinals of the equations arising in Fermat's last theorem $$x^n+y^n=z^n$$ where $n\gt 2$, and where we use the natural ordinal ...
24
votes
2answers
826 views

Trost's Discriminant Trick

The following little trick was introduced by E. Trost (Eine Bemerkung zur Diophantischen Analysis, Elem. Math. 26 (1971), 60-61). For showing that a diophantine equation such as $x^4 - 2y^2 = 1$ ...
23
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3answers
3k views

Solve in positive integers $n!=m(m+1)$

Is anybody know a solution of this problem? (Sorry, I've missed one summand in the previous post.)
21
votes
3answers
655 views

Consecutive square values of cubic polynomials

Let $P(x)$ be a cubic polynomial with integer coefficients. Does there exist a constant $c$ such that at least one of the following values $P(0),P(1),...,P(c)$ is not a square? It is known that the ...
20
votes
3answers
4k views

Are nontrivial integer solutions known for $x^3+y^3+z^3=3$?

The Diophantine equation $$x^3+y^3+z^3=3$$ has four easy integer solutions: $(1,1,1)$ and the three permutations of $(4,4,-5)$. Elsenhans and Jahnel wrote in 2007 that these were all the solutions ...
20
votes
1answer
2k views

Polynomials with rational coefficients

Long time ago there was a question on whether a polynomial bijection $\mathbb Q^2\to\mathbb Q$ exists. Only one attempt of answering it has been given, highly downvoted by the way. But this answer ...
20
votes
3answers
1k views

Proving non-existence of solutions to $3^n-2^m=t$ without using congruences

I made a passing comment under Max Alekseyev's cute answer to this question and Pete Clark suggested I raise it explicitly as a different question. I cannot give any motivation for it however---it was ...
19
votes
2answers
2k views

The diophantine eq. $x^4 +y^4 +1=z^2$

This question is an exact duplicate of the question Does the equation $x^4+y^4+1=z^2$ have a non-trivial solution? posted by Tito Piezas III on math.stackexchange.com. The background of ...
18
votes
1answer
2k views

Fermat's Last Theorem in the cyclotomic integers.

Kummer proved that there are no non-trivial solutions to the Fermat equation FLT(n): $x^n + y^n = z^n$ with $n > 2$ natural and $x,y,z$ elements of a regular cyclotomic ring of integers $K$. I am ...
17
votes
1answer
797 views

Solutions to $\binom{n}{5} = 2 \binom{m}{5}$

In Finite Mathematics by Lial et al. (10th ed.), problem 8.3.34 says: On National Public Radio, the Weekend Edition program posed the following probability problem: Given a certain number of ...
17
votes
1answer
627 views

Is there an online encyclopedia of Diophantine equations (OEDE)?

Hello all! I'm just wondering if there is an online encyclopedia of Diophantine equations (OEDE), analogous to the OEIS for sequences. While trying to solve one Diophantine equation, I reduced the ...
16
votes
6answers
3k views

Pythagorean 5-tuples

What is the solution of the equation $x^2+y^2+z^2+t^2=w^2$ in polynomials over C ("Pythagorean 5-tuples")? There are simple formulas describing Pythagorean n-tuples for n=3,4,6: n=3. The formula ...
16
votes
6answers
2k views

Which Diophantine equations can be solved using continued fractions?

Pell equations can be solved using continued fractions. I have heard that some elliptic curves can be "solved" using continued fractions. Is this true? Which Diophantine equations other than Pell ...
16
votes
2answers
602 views

Lower bounds on the easier Waring problem

The easier Waring problem asks for the least number $v=v(k)$ such that every every integer is a sum of $v$ $k$'th powers with signs, i.e. every $n\in \mathbb{N}$ is of the form $$n=x_1^k\pm ...
15
votes
0answers
209 views

Are there any integers which can't be written as a sum of two fourth powers minus a cube?

To be precise, I am asking: Does there exist an integer $k$ such that there do not exist (possibly negative) integers $x,y,z$ satisfying $x^4+y^4=z^3+k$? Heuristically the answer must be yes, in ...
14
votes
7answers
3k views

Diophantine equation with no integer solutions, but with solutions modulo every integer

It's probably common knowledge that there are Diophantine equations which do not admit any solutions in the integers, but which admit solutions modulo $n$ for every $n$. This fact is stated, for ...
14
votes
0answers
392 views

Torsion points of abelian varieties in the perfect closure of a function field

The following is a problem, which was recently brought to my attention by H. Esnault and A. Langer. Let $K$ be the function field of a smooth curve over the algebraic closure $k$ of the finite field ...
13
votes
5answers
1k views

Permission to use Online Notes

Hello, I am a new professor in Mathematics and I am running an independent study on Diophantine equations with a student of mine. Online I have found a wealth of very helpful expository notes ...
13
votes
3answers
1k views

Striking applications of Baker's theorem

I saw that there are many "applications" questions in Mathoverflow; so hopefully this is an appropriate question. I was rather surprised that there were only five questions at Mathoverflow so far with ...
13
votes
1answer
445 views

State of knowledge of $a^n+b^n=c^n+d^n$ vs. $a^n+b^n+c^n=d^n+e^n+f^n$

As far as I understand, both of the Diophantine equations $$a^5 + b^5 = c^5 + d^5$$ and $$a^6 + b^6 = c^6 + d^6$$ have no known nontrivial solutions, but $$24^5 + 28^5 + 67^5 = 3^5+64^5+62^5$$ and ...
13
votes
0answers
294 views

The lonely molecule

Suppose $n$ air molecules (infinitesimal points) are bouncing around in a unit $d$-dimensional cube, with perfectly elastic wall collisions. Let $k=n^{\frac{1}{d}}$. For example, in 3D, $d=3$, with ...
12
votes
5answers
1k views

Advances and difficulties in effective version of Thue-Roth-Siegel Theorem

A fundamental result in Diophantine approximation, which was largely responsible for Klaus Roth being awarded the Fields Medal in 1958, is the following simple-to-state result: If $\alpha$ is a real ...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

Transforming a Diophantine equation to an elliptic curve

I heard that the following problem lead to determine the rational points of an elliptic curve: For which integers $n$ there are integers $x,y,z$ such that $x/y+y/z+z/x=n$. Could anyone show me why ...
12
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5answers
1k views

Special arithmetic progressions involving perfect squares

Some time ago the following rather easy problem appeared in an online publication called "Problems in Elementary NT" by Hojoo Lee: Prove that there are infinitely many positive integers $a$, $b$, $c$ ...
12
votes
3answers
829 views

Not-lonely runners

The lonely runner conjecture has several formulations. They all involve a number $n$ runners running on a circular track, each with a different speeds, and the conjecture is that each runner is ...
12
votes
1answer
529 views

Can we extend the proof of Catalan's conjecture?

What is it, in Mihailescu's proof of Catalan conjecture, that uses explicitly the fact that there is a 1 on the right hand side of $x^p - y^q = 1$? In other words, why can't we extend his argument to ...
12
votes
2answers
284 views

A sequence based on Catalan–Mihăilescu problem

It was conjectured by Catalan in 1844 that the only solutions of the equation $x^a-y^b=1$ over variables $a,b,x,y\in\mathbb{N^+}$ are trivial ones: $3^1-2^1=1$ and $3^2-2^3=1$. The conjecture was ...
11
votes
2answers
663 views

On Generalizations of Fermat's Conjecture

We know the following facts: (1) For all $1\leq n\leq 2$ the equation $x_{1}^{n}+x_{2}^{n}=x_{3}^{n}$ has a solution in $\mathbb{N}$. (2) For all $3\leq n$ the equation ...
11
votes
2answers
774 views

sum of three cubes and parametric solutions

The first paragraph in the following link asserts that the equation $x^3+y^3+z^3=2$ has finite many parametric solutions over $\mathbb{Q}$, i.e., there are finite many polynomial triples ...
11
votes
1answer
346 views

Symmetric functions on three parameters being perfect squares

Is it possible for $x+y+z, xy+yz+zx$, and $xyz$ to be perfect squares at the same time for positive integer values of $x,y,z$?
11
votes
5answers
1k views

Analysis of a quadratic diophantine equation

Hi! This is my first post on Math Overflow. I have two equations: $a(3a-1) + b(3b-1) = c(3c-1)$ and $a(3a-1) - b(3b-1) = d(3d-1)$. I'm trying to find properties of $a$ and $b$ that lead to solutions, ...
11
votes
3answers
293 views

(Non-)Existence of curves of low degree on affine and projective varieties

I am interested in papers that investigates the existence or non-existence of curves of low degree (relative to the degree of the ambient variety). The starting example is that of surfaces and ...
11
votes
1answer
820 views

Fermat's Bachet-Mordell Equation

Fermat once claimed that the only integral solutions to $y^2 = x^3 - 2$ are $(3, \pm 5)$. Fermat knew Bachet's duplication formulas (more precisely, Bachet had a formula for computing what we call ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

Is there an elementary way to find the integer solutions to $x^2-y^3=1$?

I gave this problem to my undergraduate assistant, as I saw that Euler had originally solved it (although I am having trouble finding his proof). After working on it for two weeks, we boiled the hard ...
10
votes
3answers
882 views

A heuristic for the density of solutions to Diophantine equations

Let $f\in\mathbb{Z}[X_1,\ldots,X_n]$ be a Diophantine equation which, for the purposes of this question, I will assume is homogeneous and nonsingular on $\mathbb{R}^n\setminus\{0\}$ (so that $\nabla ...
10
votes
3answers
988 views

Is (n,m)=(18,7) the only positive solution to n^2 + n + 1 = m^3 ?

It's hard to do a Google search on this problem. If I was using Maple correctly, there are no other positive solutions with n at most 10000. I know some of these Diophantine questions succumb to ...
10
votes
1answer
937 views

Effect of abc conjecture on Fermat's Last Theorem

A website ( http://www.math.unicaen.fr/~nitaj/abc.html#Consequences ) says that the $abc$ conjecture implies that there are only finitely many solutions to the equation $x^n+y^n=z^n$ with ...
10
votes
3answers
995 views

Diophantine equation: Egyptian fraction representations of 1

According to the OEIS (A002966) there are 294314 solutions in positive integers to the equation $$\sum_{i=1}^7\frac{1}{x_i}=1$$ assuming $x_1\leq x_2\leq\cdots\leq x_7$. Similarly for 8 summands there ...
10
votes
1answer
370 views

Can the sum of two non-zero coprime fifth powers be powerful?

I am wondering if the sum of two non-zero coprime fifth powers can be powerful. There are no small solutions. Q1 Can the sum of two non-zero coprime fifth powers be powerful? Got a partial ...
10
votes
1answer
254 views

Sets of integers represented by degree zero rational functions

Suppose $f(x_1,x_2,\dots)=\frac{P}{Q}$, where $P,Q$ are polynomials in several variables with integer coefficients that have the same degree. Let's denote by $S(f)$ the set of integers $n$ for which ...
10
votes
0answers
728 views

Consecutive averages of sequence (or difference quotients of partial sums) always square

I proposed the following problem for the December 2013 USA IMO TST earlier this month: Let $a_1,a_2,a_3,\ldots$ be a sequence of integers, with the property that every consecutive group of $a_i$'s ...
10
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0answers
309 views

Growth of $n=n(k)$ for which there's a non-trivial solution to $x_1^k+\cdots+x_n^k=y^k$?

Walter Hayman just asked me the following question. What, if anything, is known about the growth of the function $n(k)$, where $k\geq1$ is an integer, and $n=n(k)\geq2$ is the smallest integer for ...
10
votes
0answers
792 views

Effective proofs of Siegel's theorem using arithmetic geometry

This is a speculation and perhaps naive. The theorem of Siegel that There exist only finitely many integral points on a curve of genus $\geq 1$ over a number ring $\mathcal O_{K, S}$ where $S$ is ...