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Concept# Radius of convergence

Summary

In mathematics, the radius of convergence of a power series is the radius of the largest disk at the center of the series in which the series converges. It is either a non-negative real number or . When it is positive, the power series converges absolutely and uniformly on compact sets inside the open disk of radius equal to the radius of convergence, and it is the Taylor series of the analytic function to which it converges. In case of multiple singularities of a function (singularities are those values of the argument for which the function is not defined), the radius of convergence is the shortest or minimum of all the respective distances (which are all non-negative numbers) calculated from the center of the disk of convergence to the respective singularities of the function.
For a power series f defined as:
where
a is a complex constant, the center of the disk of convergence,
cn is the n-th complex coefficient, and
z is a complex variable.
The radius of convergence r is a nonnegative real number or such that the series converges if
and diverges if
Some may prefer an alternative definition, as existence is obvious:
On the boundary, that is, where |z − a| = r, the behavior of the power series may be complicated, and the series may converge for some values of z and diverge for others. The radius of convergence is infinite if the series converges for all complex numbers z.
Two cases arise. The first case is theoretical: when you know all the coefficients then you take certain limits and find the precise radius of convergence. The second case is practical: when you construct a power series solution of a difficult problem you typically will only know a finite number of terms in a power series, anywhere from a couple of terms to a hundred terms. In this second case, extrapolating a plot estimates the radius of convergence.
The radius of convergence can be found by applying the root test to the terms of the series. The root test uses the number
"lim sup" denotes the limit superior.

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