polynomial is an expression constructed from one or more variables and constants, using the operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and constant positive whole number exponents. For example, is a polynomial, but is not because it involves division by a variable and has an exponent that is not a positive whole number.
Polynomials are one of the most important concepts in algebra and throughout mathematics and science. They are used to form polynomial equations, which encode a wide range of problems, from elementary story problems to complicated problems in the sciences; they are used to define polynomial functions, which appear in settings ranging from basic chemistry and physics to economics, and are used in calculus and numerical analysis to approximate other functions. Polynomials are used to construct polynomial rings, one of the most powerful concepts in algebra and algebraic geometry.