determinant meaning

[ di'tə:minənt ] Pronunciation:   "determinant" in a sentence
Noun: determinant  di'turmununt
1. A determining or causal element or factor
"education is an important determinant of one's outlook on life"
- determiner, determinative, determining factor, causal factor
2. The site on the surface of an antigen molecule to which an antibody attaches itself
- antigenic determinant, epitope
3. (mathematics) a scalar quantity derived from a matrix giving the volume scaling of the matrix
1. Having the power or quality of deciding
"the determinative (or determinant) battle"
- deciding, determinative, determining

Derived forms: determinants

Type of: cognitive factor, site, situation, square matrix

Part of: antigen

Encyclopedia: Determinant

[Control systems]
The product of the partial return differences associated with the nodes of a signal-flow graph.

[Economics]
A number derived from the values of the elements of a square matrix. For example, if aij are the elements in the ith row and jth column of a 2 * 2 matrix, its determinant is given by Δ = a11 a22 -a12 a21 ; the derivation of determinants for larger matrices is similar in principle. A major function of determinants is to check whether the rows or columns of a matrix are independent; if they are not independent then the determinant is zero. It can be seen that if a11 /a12 = a21 /a22, Δ = 0.

[Medicine]
n
1
a : a hypothetical aggregate of biophores conceived as comparable to the gene of more recent biological theory
b : GENE
2 : EPITOPE

Examples

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1. each antigen may have many different determinants.
2. it is important to distinguish matrices from determinants.
3. for finite-dimensional spaces determinants can be brought into play.
4. the determinant can be evaluated from the cofactors of any column.
5. this determinant is a special case of the resultant of two polynomials.