Indexes and Exponents

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Here, you will find basic information about indexes and exponents in LibreOffice Math. You can try the examples described here to help you understand the details discussed. (The quotation marks in this text are for emphasis purposes only and are not part of the examples.)

The index and exponent for a character are displayed one on top of the other, left-justified to the base character. For example, type a_2^3 or a^3_2. This can be in any order. Instead of '_' and '^', you can use 'sub' and 'sup'.

However, it is no longer possible to use the following patterns

a_2_3

a^2^3

a_2^3_4

Each sub-/superscript position of a base character can only be used once. You must use brackets to indicate the desired result. The following examples illustrate this

a_{2_3}

a^{2^3}

a_2^{3_4}

a_{2^3}^{4_5}

Tip.png Unlike other formula editors where "_" and " ^ " only refer to the next character ("a_24" refers only to the "2"), LibreOffice Math refers to the entire number(s)/name(s)/text. If you want to put superscripts and subscripts in sequence, the expression can be written as follows: a_2{}^3 or a^3{}_2

To write tensors, LibreOffice Math provides several options. In addition to the notation "R_i{}^{jk}{}_l", common in other applications, additional notations can be used, namely "R_i{}^jk{}_l" and "{{R_i}^jk}_l".

Super- and subscripts to the left of the base character can also be right-justified. To do this, the new commands "lsub" and "lsup" are used. Both commands have the same effect as "sub" and "sup", except that they are left of the base character. See also "a lsub 2 lsup 3".

The rules governing unambiguity and the necessity of using brackets remain the same. In principle, this can be achieved with {}_2^3 a.

Note.png The commands "sub" and "sup" are also available as "rsub" and "rsup".

Using the "csub" and "csup" commands, you can write super- and subscripts directly above or below a character. An example is "a csub y csup x". Combinations of indexes and exponents together are also possible: "abc_1^2 lsub 3 lsup 4 csub 55555 csup 66666".

Super- and subscripts can be attached to most unary and binary operators. Two examples: "a div_2 b a<csub n b +_2 h" and "a toward csub f b x toward csup f y".

Warning.png Be sure to also enter all spaces between characters when entering these examples into the Commands window.