# Rabinowitsch trick

In mathematics, the Rabinowitsch trick, introduced by George Yuri Rainich and published under his original name Rabinowitsch (1929), is a short way of proving the general case of the Hilbert Nullstellensatz from an easier special case (the so-called weak Nullstellensatz), by introducing an extra variable.

The Rabinowitsch trick goes as follows. Let K be an algebraically closed field. Suppose the polynomial f in K[x1,...xn] vanishes whenever all polynomials f1,....,fm vanish. Then the polynomials f1,....,fm, 1  x0f have no common zeros (where we have introduced a new variable x0), so by the weak Nullstellensatz for K[x0, ..., xn] they generate the unit ideal of K[x0 ,..., xn]. Spelt out, this means there are polynomials ${\displaystyle g_{0},g_{1},\dots ,g_{m}\in K[x_{0},x_{1},\dots ,x_{n}]}$ such that

${\displaystyle 1=g_{0}(x_{0},x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})(1-x_{0}f(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n}))+\sum _{i=1}^{m}g_{i}(x_{0},x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})f_{i}(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})}$

as an equality of elements of the polynomial ring ${\displaystyle K[x_{0},x_{1},\dots ,x_{n}]}$. Since ${\displaystyle x_{0},x_{1},\dots ,x_{n}}$ are free variables, this equality continues to hold if expressions are substituted for some of the variables; in particular, it follows from substituting ${\displaystyle x_{0}=1/f(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})}$ that

${\displaystyle 1=\sum _{i=1}^{m}g_{i}(1/f(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n}),x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})f_{i}(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})}$

as elements of the field of rational functions ${\displaystyle K(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})}$, the field of fractions of the polynomial ring ${\displaystyle K[x_{1},\dots ,x_{n}]}$. Moreover, the only expressions that occur in the denominators of the right hand side are f and powers of f, so rewriting that right hand side to have a common denominator results in an equality on the form

${\displaystyle 1={\frac {\sum _{i=1}^{m}h_{i}(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})f_{i}(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})}{f(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})^{r}}}}$

for some natural number r and polynomials ${\displaystyle h_{1},\dots ,h_{m}\in K[x_{1},\dots ,x_{n}]}$. Hence

${\displaystyle f(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})^{r}=\sum _{i=1}^{m}h_{i}(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})f_{i}(x_{1},\dots ,x_{n})}$,

which literally states that ${\displaystyle f^{r}}$ lies in the ideal generated by f1,....,fm. This is the full version of the Nullstellensatz for K[x1,...,xn].

## References

• Brownawell, W. Dale (2001) [1994], "Rabinowitsch trick", in Hazewinkel, Michiel (ed.), Encyclopedia of Mathematics, Springer Science+Business Media B.V. / Kluwer Academic Publishers, ISBN 978-1-55608-010-4
• Rabinowitsch, J.L. (1929), "Zum Hilbertschen Nullstellensatz", Math. Ann. (in German), 102 (1): 520, doi:10.1007/BF01782361, MR 1512592