# Java - What Is Math.pow() and How to Use It

Math.pow(double a, double b) is a `static` method of the `Math` class in Java. It takes two arguments (of type `double`) and raises the value of the first argument by the second argument i.e. `a^b`, and returns it as result (also `double`). In other words, `a` is the base and `b` is its exponent. For example, `Math.pow(2,4)` is equivalent to 2^4 or 16.

The return type `Math.pow(...)` is `double`. You can cast it to `long` or `int` (be careful of overflow for the latter.) Let’s look at some examples.

``````package com.codeahoy.ex;

import static java.lang.Double.NaN;

public class Main {
public static void main(String[] args) {

System.out.println((long) Math.pow(2, 4)); // 16

System.out.println((long) Math.pow(2, 1)); // 2

System.out.println((long) Math.pow(2, 0)); // 1

// If the second argument is NaN, then the result is NaN.
System.out.println(Math.pow(2, NaN)); // 0

System.out.println(Math.pow(2.5, 3)); // 15.625
}
}
``````

Output

``````16
2
1
NaN
15.625
``````

There you have it. Hope you found this tutorial useful!

### Special cases

Here’s a truncated list of special cases for `Math.pow(...)`, as documented in Javadocs.

• If the second argument is positive or negative zero, then the result is 1.0.
• If the second argument is 1.0, then the result is the same as the first argument.
• If the second argument is NaN, then the result is NaN.
• If the first argument is NaN and the second argument is nonzero, then the result is NaN.
• If
• the absolute value of the first argument is greater than 1 and the second argument is positive infinity, or
• the absolute value of the first argument is less than 1 and the second argument is negative infinity,then the result is positive infinity.
• (truncated)

For the complete list, please see Javadocs.

It’s worth noting that the `Math` class in Java contains several useful methods for arithmetic, logarithms and trignometric operations. The following YouTube video below talks about several methods of the `Math` class with examples. It’s a short video and I recommend that you watch it.