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From "Jerome (JIRA)" <>
Subject [jira] [Created] (MATH-1424) Wrong eigen values computed by EigenDecomposition when the input matrix has large values
Date Thu, 06 Jul 2017 08:08:00 GMT
Jerome created MATH-1424:

             Summary: Wrong eigen values computed by EigenDecomposition when the input matrix
has large values
                 Key: MATH-1424
             Project: Commons Math
          Issue Type: Bug
    Affects Versions: 3.6.1
         Environment: JDK 7.51 64 bits on Windows 7.
            Reporter: Jerome

The following code gives a wrong result:
RealMatrix m = [[10_000_000.0, -1_000_000.0],[-1_000_000.1, 20_000_000.0]]; // pseudo code
EigenDecomposition ed = new EigenDecomposition(m);
double[] eigenValues = ed.getRealEigenvalues();

Computed values: [1.57E13, 1.57E13].
Expected values: [1.0E7, 2.0E7]

The problem lies in method EigenDecomposition.transformToSchur(RealMatrix).
At line 758, the value matT[i+1][i] is checked against 0.0 within an EPSILON margin.
If the precision of the computation were perfect, matT[i+1][i] == 0.0 means that matT[i][i]
is a solution of the characteristic polynomial of m. In the other case there are 2 complex
But due to imprecisions, this value can be different from 0.0 while m has only real solutions.
The else part assume that the solutions are complex, which is wrong in the provided example.
To correct it, you should resolve the 2 degree polynomial without assuming the solutions are
complex (that is: test whether p*p + matT[i+1][i] * matT[i][i+1] is negative for 2 complex
solutions, or positive or null for 2 real solutions).
You should also avoid testing values against something within epsilon margin, because this
method is almost always wrong in some cases. At least, check with a margin that depends on
the amplitude of the value (ex: margin = highest absolute value of the matrix * EPSILON);
this is still wrong but problems will occur less often.

The problem occurs when the input matrix has large values because matT has values of magnitude
E7. MatT[1, 0] is really low (E-10) and you can not expect a better precision due to the large
values on the diagonal.
The test within EPSILON margin fails, which does not occurs when the input matrix has lowest
Testing the code with m2 = m / pow(2, 20) will work, because matT[1, 0] is now low enough.

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