Computing matrix symmetrizers. Part 2: new methods using eigendata and linear means; a comparison

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Over any field F every square matrix A can be factored into the product of two symmetric matrices as A = S1 . S2 with S_i = S_i^T ∈ F^(n,n) and either factor can be chosen nonsingular, as was discovered by Frobenius in 1910. Frobenius’ symmetric matrix factorization has been lying almost dormant for a century. The first successful method for computing matrix symmetrizers, i.e., symmetric matrices S such that SA is symmetric, was inspired by an iterative linear systems algorithm of Huang and Nong (2010) in 2013 [29, 30]. The resulting iterative algorithm has solved this computational problem over R and C, but at high computational cost. This paper develops and tests another linear equations solver, as well as eigen- and principal vector or Schur Normal Form based algorithms for solving the matrix symmetrizer problem numerically. Four new eigendata based algorithms use, respectively, SVD based principal vector chain constructions, Gram-Schmidt orthogonalization techniques, the Arnoldi method, or the Schur Normal Form of A in their formulations. They are helped by Datta’s 1973 method that symmetrizes unreduced Hessenberg matrices directly. The eigendata based methods work well and quickly for generic matrices A and create well conditioned matrix symmetrizers through eigenvector dyad accumulation. But all of the eigen based methods have differing deficiencies with matrices A that have ill-conditioned or complicated eigen structures with nontrivial Jordan normal forms. Our symmetrizer studies for matrices with ill-conditioned eigensystems lead to two open problems of matrix optimization.
Symmetric matrix factorization, symmetrizer, symmetrizer computation, eigenvalue method, linear equation, principal subspace computation, matrix optimization, numerical algorithm, MATLAB code
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Linear Algebra and its Applications (2015) July