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Number Square Root
4 4 = 2
5 5
6 6
7 7
8 8
9 9 = 3

The square roots of numbers between 4 and 9 must be between the two consecutive whole numbers 2 and 3, and they are not whole numbers. Based on the pattern in the table above, we could say that 5 must be between 2 and 3. Using inequality symbols, we write:

2 < 5 < 3

Estimate 60 between two consecutive whole numbers.

Solution

Think of the perfect square numbers closest to 60. Make a small table of these perfect squares and their squares roots.

.
Locate 60 between two consecutive perfect squares. .
60 is between their square roots. .
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Estimate the square root 38 between two consecutive whole numbers.

6 < 38 < 7

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Estimate the square root 84 between two consecutive whole numbers.

9 < 84 < 10

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Approximate square roots

There are mathematical methods to approximate square roots, but nowadays most people use a calculator to find them. Find the x key on your calculator. You will use this key to approximate square roots.

When you use your calculator to find the square root of a number that is not a perfect square, the answer that you see is not the exact square root. It is an approximation, accurate to the number of digits shown on your calculator’s display. The symbol for an approximation is and it is read ‘approximately.’

Suppose your calculator has a 10-digit display. You would see that

5 2.236067978

If we wanted to round 5 to two decimal places, we would say

5 2.24

How do we know these values are approximations and not the exact values? Look at what happens when we square them:

( 2.236067978 ) 2 = 5.000000002 ( 2.24 ) 2 = 5.0176

Their squares are close to 5, but are not exactly equal to 5.

Using the square root key on a calculator and then rounding to two decimal places, we can find:

4 = 2 5 2.24 6 2.45 7 2.65 8 2.83 9 = 3

Round 17 to two decimal places.

Solution

17 Use the calculator square root key. 4.123105626... Round to two decimal places. 4.12 17 4.12

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Round 11 to two decimal places.

3.32

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Round 13 to two decimal places.

3.61

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Simplify variable expressions with square roots

What if we have to find a square root of an expression with a variable? Consider 9 x 2 . Can you think of an expression whose square is 9 x 2 ?

( ? ) 2 = 9 x 2 ( 3 x ) 2 = 9 x 2 , so 9 x 2 = 3 x

When we use the radical sign to take the square root of a variable expression, we should specify that x 0 to make sure we get the principal square root .

However, in this chapter we will assume that each variable in a square-root expression represents a non-negative number and so we will not write x 0 next to every radical.

What about square roots of higher powers of variables? Think about the Power Property of Exponents we used in Chapter 6.

( a m ) n = a m · n

If we square a m , the exponent will become 2 m .

( a m ) 2 = a 2 m

How does this help us take square roots? Let’s look at a few:

25 u 8 = 5 u 4 because ( 5 u 4 ) 2 = 25 u 8 16 r 20 = 4 r 10 because ( 4 r 10 ) 2 = 16 r 20 196 q 36 = 14 q 18 because ( 14 q 18 ) 2 = 196 q 36

Simplify: x 6 y 16 .

Solution


x 6 Since ( x 3 ) 2 = x 6 . x 3


y 16 Since ( y 8 ) 2 = y 16 . y 8

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Simplify: y 8 z 12 .

y 4 z 6

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Simplify: m 4 b 10 .

m 2 b 5

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Simplify: 16 n 2 .

Solution

16 n 2 Since ( 4 n ) 2 = 16 n 2 . 4 n

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Simplify: 169 y 2 .

13 y

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Simplify: 81 c 2 .

Solution

81 c 2 Since ( 9 c ) 2 = 81 c 2 . −9 c

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Simplify: 121 y 2 .

−11 y

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Simplify: 100 p 2 .

−10 p

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Simplify: 36 x 2 y 2 .

Solution

36 x 2 y 2 Since ( 6 x y ) 2 = 36 x 2 y 2 . 6 x y

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Simplify: 100 a 2 b 2 .

10 a b

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Simplify: 225 m 2 n 2 .

15 m n

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Simplify: 64 p 64 .

Solution

64 p 64 Since ( 8 p 32 ) 2 = 64 p 64 . 8 p 32

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Simplify: 49 x 30 .

7 x 15

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Simplify: 81 w 36 .

9 w 18

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Simplify: 121 a 6 b 8

Solution

121 a 6 b 8 Since ( 11 a 3 b 4 ) 2 = 121 a 6 b 8 . 11 a 3 b 4

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Simplify: 169 x 10 y 14 .

13 x 5 y 7

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Simplify: 144 p 12 q 20 .

12 p 6 q 10

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Access this online resource for additional instruction and practice with square roots.

Key concepts

  • Note that the square root of a negative number is not a real number.
  • Every positive number has two square roots, one positive and one negative. The positive square root of a positive number is the principal square root.
  • We can estimate square roots using nearby perfect squares.
  • We can approximate square roots using a calculator.
  • When we use the radical sign to take the square root of a variable expression, we should specify that x 0 to make sure we get the principal square root.

Practice makes perfect

Simplify Expressions with Square Roots

In the following exercises, simplify.

−121

not a real number

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Estimate Square Roots

In the following exercises, estimate each square root between two consecutive whole numbers.

Approximate Square Roots

In the following exercises, approximate each square root and round to two decimal places.

Simplify Variable Expressions with Square Roots

In the following exercises, simplify.

Everyday math

Decorating Denise wants to have a square accent of designer tiles in her new shower. She can afford to buy 625 square centimeters of the designer tiles. How long can a side of the accent be?

25 centimeters

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Decorating Morris wants to have a square mosaic inlaid in his new patio. His budget allows for 2025 square inch tiles. How long can a side of the mosaic be?

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Writing exercises

Why is there no real number equal to −64 ?

Answers will vary.

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What is the difference between 9 2 and 9 ?

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Self check

After completing the exercises, use this checklist to evaluate your mastery of the objectives of this section.

This table has four columns and five rows. The columns are labeled, “I can…,” “Confidentally,” “With some help,” and “No – I don’t get it!” Under the “I can…,” column are, “simplify expressions with square roots.,” “estimate square roots.,” “approximate square roots.,” and “4) simplify variable expressions with square roots.” All the other rows under the different columns are empty.

On a scale of 1–10, how would you rate your mastery of this section in light of your responses on the checklist? How can you improve this?

Questions & Answers

Aziza is solving this equation-2(1+x)=4x+10
Sechabe Reply
No. 3^32 -1 has exactly two divisors greater than 75 and less than 85 what is their product?
KAJAL Reply
x^2+7x-19=0 has Two solutions A and B give your answer to 3 decimal places
Adedamola Reply
please the answer to the example exercise
Patricia Reply
3. When Jenna spent 10 minutes on the elliptical trainer and then did circuit training for20 minutes, her fitness app says she burned 278 calories. When she spent 20 minutes onthe elliptical trainer and 30 minutes circuit training she burned 473 calories. How manycalories does she burn for each minute on the elliptical trainer? How many calories doesshe burn for each minute of circuit training?
Edwin Reply
.473
Angelita
?
Angelita
John left his house in Irvine at 8:35 am to drive to a meeting in Los Angeles, 45 miles away. He arrived at the meeting at 9:50. At 3:30 pm, he left the meeting and drove home. He arrived home at 5:18.
DaYoungan Reply
p-2/3=5/6 how do I solve it with explanation pls
Adedamola Reply
P=3/2
Vanarith
1/2p2-2/3p=5p/6
James
don't understand answer
Cindy
4.5
Ruth
is y=7/5 a solution of 5y+3=10y-4
Adedamola Reply
yes
James
don't understand answer
Cindy
Lucinda has a pocketful of dimes and quarters with a value of $6.20. The number of dimes is 18 more than 3 times the number of quarters. How many dimes and how many quarters does Lucinda have?
Rhonda Reply
Find an equation for the line that passes through the point P ( 0 , − 4 ) and has a slope 8/9 .
Gabriel Reply
is that a negative 4 or positive 4?
Felix
y = mx + b
Felix
if negative -4, then -4=8/9(0) + b
Felix
-4=b
Felix
if positive 4, then 4=b
Felix
then plug in y=8/9x - 4 or y=8/9x+4
Felix
Macario is making 12 pounds of nut mixture with macadamia nuts and almonds. macadamia nuts cost $9 per pound and almonds cost $5.25 per pound. how many pounds of macadamia nuts and how many pounds of almonds should macario use for the mixture to cost $6.50 per pound to make?
Cherry Reply
Nga and Lauren bought a chest at a flea market for $50. They re-finished it and then added a 350 % mark - up
Makaila Reply
$1750
Cindy
the sum of two Numbers is 19 and their difference is 15
Abdulai Reply
2, 17
Jose
interesting
saw
4,2
Cindy
Felecia left her home to visit her daughter, driving 45mph. Her husband waited for the dog sitter to arrive and left home 20 minutes, or 13 hour later. He drove 55mph to catch up to Felecia. How long before he reaches her?
Rafi Reply
hola saben como aser un valor de la expresión
NAILEA
integer greater than 2 and less than 12
Emily Reply
2 < x < 12
Felix
I'm guessing you are doing inequalities...
Felix
Actually, translating words into algebraic expressions / equations...
Felix
hi
Darianna
hello
Mister
Eric here
Eric
6
Cindy
Practice Key Terms 3

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Source:  OpenStax, Elementary algebra. OpenStax CNX. Jan 18, 2017 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col12116/1.2
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