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TAGS: GRE Prep Club Legend  Joined: 07 Jun 2014
Posts: 4810
GRE 1: Q167 V156 WE: Business Development (Energy and Utilities)
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Which of the following integers CANNOT be expressed as the [#permalink]
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Expert's post 00:00

Question Stats: 58% (00:35) correct 41% (00:30) wrong based on 43 sessions
Which of the following integers CANNOT be expressed as the sum of two prime numbers?

A. 8
B. 9
C. 10
D. 11
E. 12

Practice Questions
Question: 9
Page: 62
[Reveal] Spoiler: OA

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Sandy
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GRE Prep Club Legend  Joined: 07 Jun 2014
Posts: 4810
GRE 1: Q167 V156 WE: Business Development (Energy and Utilities)
Followers: 118

Kudos [?]: 1897 , given: 397

Re: Which of the following integers CANNOT be expressed as the [#permalink]
Expert's post
Explanation

Trying to write each answer choice as a sum of two prime numbers by trial and error, you get:

Choice A: 8 = 3 + 5
Choice B: 9 = 2 + 7
Choice C: 10 = 3 + 7
Choice D: 11 = 1 + 10 = 2 + 9 = 3 + 8 = 4 + 7 = 5 + 6
Choice E: 12 = 5 + 7

Of the answer choices given, only 11 cannot be expressed as the sum of two prime numbers. The correct answer is Choice D.
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Sandy
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Re: Which of the following integers CANNOT be expressed as the [#permalink]
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Expert's post
sandy wrote:
Which of the following integers CANNOT be expressed as the sum of two prime numbers?
A. 8
B. 9
C. 10
D. 11
E. 12

To solve, we can analyze each answer choice.

A) 8

Since 5 + 3 = 8, and both 5 and 3 are prime, answer choice A is not correct.

B) 9

Since 7 + 2 = 9, and both 7 and 2 are prime, answer choice B is not correct.

C) 10

Since 7 + 3 = 10, and both 7 and 3 are prime, answer choice C is not correct.

D) 11

Since two prime numbers CANNOT SUM TO 11, answer choice D is correct.

Since we have a correct answer, we can stop at answer choice D.
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Jeffrey Miller

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Re: Which of the following integers CANNOT be expressed as the [#permalink]
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Important note:

1) 2 is the only even prime number. In other words, other than 2, all prime numbers are odd.
2) When you add two odd numbers, result is always even (O + O = E).
3) There is a conjecture that every even number greater than 2 can be written as sum of two prime numbers. So we don't even need to check for the even sum options.

Let's take care of the options that are in odd numbers (b(9) & d(11)).

To get an odd sum, one number must be even and then other odd.
So to get 9 (option b) and 11 (option c), one prime number must be 2.
Now we just need to subtract 2 out of each of these two options to see whether we get another prime.
9-2=7 (Prime number).
11-2=9(Non-Prime number).

Hence, option d.

Hope this helps! Re: Which of the following integers CANNOT be expressed as the   [#permalink] 20 May 2018, 07:50
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