Definition of Mersenne number in English:

Mersenne number

Line breaks: Mer|senne num¦ber
Pronunciation: /məːˈsɛn


A number of the form 2p−1, where p is a prime number. Such a number which is itself prime is also called a Mersenne prime.
More example sentences
  • Expressed in the form 2 p - 1, where the exponent p is itself prime, Mersenne numbers have characteristics that make it relatively easy to determine whether a candidate is prime.
  • Written in the form 2 p - 1, where the exponent p is a prime number, Mersenne numbers hold a special place in the never-ending pursuit of larger and larger primes.
  • One must be the Lucas Lehmer primality test which uses the Fermat congruence, and in particular his application to testing whether a Mersenne number was prime.


late 19th century: named after Marin Mersenne (1588–1648), French mathematician.

Definition of Mersenne number in:

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day anomalous
Pronunciation: əˈnɒm(ə)ləs
deviating from what is standard, normal, or expected