Chen Jingrun

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Chen Jingrun
Chen Jing-run.JPG
Born (1933-05-22)May 22, 1933
Fuzhou, Fujian Province, China
Died March 19, 1996(1996-03-19) (aged 62)
Nationality Chinese
Fields Mathematics
Alma mater Chinese Academy of Sciences
Xiamen University
Doctoral advisor Hua Luogeng
Known for Chen's theorem, Chen prime
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Chen.

Chen Jingrun (simplified Chinese: 陈景润; traditional Chinese: 陳景潤; pinyin: Chén Jǐngrùn; Wade–Giles: Ch'en Ching-jun; Foochow Romanized: Dìng Gīng-ê̤ṳng, May 22, 1933 – March 19, 1996) was a Chinese mathematician who made significant contributions to number theory.

Personal life[edit]

Chen was the third son in a large family from Fuzhou, Fujian, China. His father was a postal worker. Chen Jingrun graduated from the Mathematics Department of Xiamen University in 1953. His advisor at Chinese Academy of Sciences was Hua Luogeng.


His work on the twin prime conjecture, Waring's problem, Goldbach's conjecture and Legendre's conjecture led to progress in analytic number theory. In a 1966 paper he proved what is now called Chen's theorem: every sufficiently large even number can be written as the sum of a prime and a semiprime (the product of two primes) — e.g., 100 = 23 + 7·11.


Chen's statue in Xiamen University, China.

The Asteroid 7681 Chenjingrun was named after him.

In 1999, China issued an 80-cent postage stamp, titled The Best Result of Goldbach Conjecture, with a silhouette of Chen and the inequality:

P_x(1, 2) \ge \frac{0.67xC_x}{(\log x)^2}.

Several statues in China have been built in memory of Chen. At Xiamen University, the names of Chen and four other mathematicians — Peter Gustav Lejeune Dirichlet, Matti Jutila, Yuri Linnik, and Pan Chengdong — are inscribed in the marble slab behind Chen's statue (see image).


  • J.-R. Chen, On the representation of a large even integer as the sum of a prime and a product of at most two primes, Sci. Sinica 16 (1973), 157–176.
  • Chen, J.R, "On the representation of a large even integer as the sum of a prime and the product of at most two primes". [Chinese] J. Kexue Tongbao 17 (1966), 385–386.

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External links[edit]