The Spectral Theorem

  • Carlos S. Kubrusly


The Spectral Theorem is a landmark in the theory of operators on Hilbert space, providing a full statement about the nature and structure of normal operators. Normal operators play a central role in operator theory; they will be defined in Section 6.1 below. It is customary to say that the Spectral Theorem can be applied to answer essentially all questions on normal operators. This indeed is the case as far as “essentially all” means “almost all” or “all the principal”: there exist open questions on normal operators. First we consider the class of normal operators and its relatives (predecessors and successors). Next, the notion of spectrum of an operator acting on a complex Banach space is introduced. The Spectral Theorem for compact normal operators is fully investigated, yielding the concept of diagonalization. The Spectral Theorem for plain normal operators needs measure theory. We would not dare to relegate measure theory to an appendix just to support a proper proof of the Spectral Theorem for plain normal operators. Instead we assume just once, at the very last section of this book, that the reader has some familiarity with measure theory, just enough to grasp the statement of the Spectral Theorem for plain normal operators after having proved it for compact normal operators.


Hilbert Space Normal Operator Compact Operator Spectral Radius Complex Hilbert Space 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carlos S. Kubrusly
    • 1
  1. 1.Catholic UniversityRio de JaneiroBrazil

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