# Primitive Root

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## primitive root

[′prim·əd·iv ′rüt]
(mathematics)
An n th root of unity that is not an m th root of unity for any m less than n.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

## Primitive Root

A primitive root modulo m is a number g such that the smallest positive number k for which the difference gk — 1 is divisible by m—that is, for which gk is congruent to 1 modulo m—coincides with ɸ(m), where ɸ(m) is the number of positive integers less than m and relatively prime to m. For example, if m = 7, the number 3 is a primitive root modulo 7. In fact, ɸ(7) = 6, since the numbers 31 – 1 = 2, 32 – 1 = 8, 33 - 1 = 26, 34 - 1 = 80, and 35 - 1 = 242 are not divisible by 7—only 36 — 1 = 728 is divisible by 7. Primitive roots exist only for m = 2, m = 4, m = pa, and m = 2pa, where ρ is an odd prime and α is a positive integer. The number of primitive roots in these cases is equal to ɸ[ɸ(m)] (numbers whose difference is divisible by m are not considered distinct). In 1926, 1. M. Vinogradov showed that a primitive root modulo p, where ρ is an odd prime, can be found in the interval , where k is the number of distinct prime divisors of ρ — 1.

### REFERENCES

Vinogradov, I. M. Osnovy teorii chisel, 8th ed. Moscow, 1972.
Vinogradov, I. M. Izbr. trudy. Moscow, 1952. Pages 54–57.
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References in periodicals archive ?
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Let c be a primitive root for r, let [chi] be a character of order n defined by [chi](c) = [omega] where [omega] = [e.sup.2[pi]i/n] and let [MATHEMATICAL EXPRESSION NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] be the Gauss sum of [chi] where [F.sub.r] is a finite field of order r.
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By Horie [4, Theorem 2], l [??] [h.sup.-.sub.n]/[h.sup.-.sub.n-1] for all n [greater than or equal to] 1 if l is a primitive root modulo [p.sup.2] and l is larger than an explicit but complicated constant depending on p.
Among specific topics are the prime numbers, congruences, primitive roots, the Hasse-Minkowski theorem, continued fractions, and hyperbolas and Pell's equation.
So F has as eigenvalues the 2520th primitive roots of unity, with multiplicity 1.

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