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Concept# Krylov subspace

Summary

In linear algebra, the order-r Krylov subspace generated by an n-by-n matrix A and a vector b of dimension n is the linear subspace spanned by the of b under the first r powers of A (starting from ), that is,
The concept is named after Russian applied mathematician and naval engineer Alexei Krylov, who published a paper about it in 1931.
Vectors are linearly independent until , and . Thus, denotes the maximal dimension of a Krylov subspace.
The maximal dimension satisfies and .
More exactly, , where is the minimal polynomial of . Furthermore, there exists a such that .
is a cyclic submodule generated by of the torsion -module , where is the linear space on .
can be decomposed as the direct sum of Krylov subspaces.
Krylov subspaces are used in algorithms for finding approximate solutions to high-dimensional linear algebra problems. Many linear dynamical system tests in control theory, especially those related to controllability and observability, involve checking the rank of the Krylov subspace. These tests are equivalent to finding the span of the Gramians associated with the system/output maps so the uncontrollable and unobservable subspaces are simply the orthogonal complement to the Krylov subspace.
Modern iterative methods such as Arnoldi iteration can be used for finding one (or a few) eigenvalues of large sparse matrices or solving large systems of linear equations. They try to avoid matrix-matrix operations, but rather multiply vectors by the matrix and work with the resulting vectors. Starting with a vector , one computes , then one multiplies that vector by to find and so on. All algorithms that work this way are referred to as Krylov subspace methods; they are among the most successful methods currently available in numerical linear algebra. These methods can be used in situations where there is an algorithm to compute the matrix-vector multiplication without there being an explicit representation of , giving rise to Matrix-free methods.

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