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C Program to calculate the power using recursion

Last updated on July 27, 2020


The following is a C program to calculate the power using recursion:

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/***************************************************
 Program to calculate the power using recursion 
 * 
 * Enter base: 2
 * Enter exponent: 5
 * 2^5 = 32
 ***************************************************/

#include<stdio.h> // include stdio.h library
int power(int, int);

int main(void)
{    
    int base, exponent;

    printf("Enter base: ");
    scanf("%d", &base);

    printf("Enter exponent: ");
    scanf("%d", &exponent);

    printf("%d^%d = %d", base, exponent, power(base, exponent));

    return 0; // return 0 to operating system
}

int power(int base, int exponent)
{    

    //base condition
    if(exponent == 0)
    {
        return 1;
    }

    else
    {
        // recursive call
        return base * power(base, exponent - 1);
    }

}

Expected Output: 1st run:

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Enter base: 2
Enter exponent: 0
2^0 = 1

2nd run:

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Enter base: 4
Enter exponent: 4
4^4 = 256

How it works #

The following figure shows how the recursive evaluation of \(4^4\) takes place.


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