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Mathematics Seminar

Mathematics Seminar

Perfect Numbers and Mersenne Primes

Presented by Autumn Lange

The search for perfect numbers and prime numbers began thousands of years ago, and it still continues to this day. What makes a prime number and perfect number is how they are uniquely defined by their divisors. A prime number is a positive integer, greater than 1, that has no integer factors other than one and itself. A positive integer n is considered to be a perfect number if the sum of all proper divisors is equal to n itself. We will be looking at special primes called Mersenne primes, named after French Minim Friar Marin Mersenne. These primes are linked to powers of two. In this talk, we will explore Mersenne primes and their captivating relationship with perfect numbers. This talk will review some material in algebra, therefore, prior knowledge in algebra is useful, but not necessary.

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