Cassini and Catalan identities

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Cassini's identity and Catalan's identity are mathematical identities for the Fibonacci numbers. The former is a special case of the latter, and states that for the nth Fibonacci number,

F_{n-1}F_{n+1} - F_n^2 = (-1)^n.\,

Catalan's identity generalizes this:

F_n^2 - F_{n-r}F_{n+r} = (-1)^{n-r}F_r^2.\,

Vajda's identity generalizes this:

F_{n+i}F_{n+j} - F_{n}F_{n+i+j} = (-1)^nF_{i}F_{j}.\,


Cassini's formula was discovered in 1680 by Jean-Dominique Cassini, then director of the Paris Observatory, and independently proven by Robert Simson (1753). Eugène Charles Catalan found the identity named after him in 1879.

Proof by matrix theory[edit]

A quick proof of Cassini's identity may be given (Knuth 1997, p. 81) by recognising the left side of the equation as a determinant of a 2×2 matrix of Fibonacci numbers. The result is almost immediate when the matrix is seen to be the nth power of a matrix with determinant −1:

F_{n-1}F_{n+1} - F_n^2


External links[edit]