Python is a popular highlevel programming language that has gained immense popularity among developers. One of the most useful functions in Python is the power function. The power function in Python helps to raise a given number to a specific power, which is useful in various mathematical and scientific applications. In this article, we will explore the Python power function, including its syntax, and parameters, along with some examples.
What is Python Power Function?
The power function is a mathematical function that enables us to raise a number to a given power or exponent. It is represented as x^n, where x is the base, and n is the exponent. The power function is used to perform mathematical computations involving exponentiation, such as calculating compound interest, calculating the area of a circle, or calculating the growth rate of an investment.
Understanding Exponents and Bases
Before we delve into the details of the power function, it is essential to understand the concepts of exponents and bases. The exponent represents the number of times the base is multiplied by itself. For example, in the expression 2^3, 2 is the base, and 3 is the exponent. This means that 2 is multiplied by itself three times, resulting in 222=8. The exponent can be any integer, positive, negative, or zero. A negative exponent indicates that the base is divided by itself, while a zero exponent always results in the value of 1.
Syntax of Python Power Function
Python provides two distinct variations of the pow() function, one which is builtin and the other which can be imported from the math module.
The syntax for using the inbuilt pow() function is as follows:
pow(base, exponent, modulus)
If you provide only two arguments to the pow() function, it will calculate the result of the base value raised to the power of the exponent value and if you provide all three arguments to the pow() function, it will calculate the remainder after performing the power operation with the modulus value.
The syntax for using the math.pow() function in Python is as follows:
import math
math.pow(x, y)
Here, x and y are the two input parameters where x is the base and y is the exponent. The function returns the value of x raised to the power of y as a floatingpoint number.
Parameters of Python Power Function
The Python power function is used to calculate the power of a number. It takes two or three arguments as inputs, depending on whether you want to calculate the result with or without a modulus. Here are the parameters of the inbuilt pow() function in Python:
 Base (required): This is the base value that needs to be raised to a certain power. It can be an integer or a float.
 Exponent (required): This is the power to which the base value needs to be raised. It can be an integer or a float.
 Modulus (optional): This is an optional argument that represents the modulus value. It is used to get the remainder after performing the power operation. It can be an integer only.
The math.pow() function in Python accepts the same parameters as the builtin pow() function, with the exception that it does not take a third argument for modulus.
Return Value of Python Power Function
The builtin pow() function in Python and the math.pow() function in Python both return the result of a power operation, but they have different return values and behaviors.

Builtin pow() function in Python:
The builtin pow() function in Python returns an integer or a float, depending on the input parameters. If the input parameters are integers, the result will be an integer. If at least one of the input parameters is a float, the result will be a float. 
math.pow() function in Python:
The math.pow() function always returns a float, regardless of the input parameters. It is similar to the builtin pow() function, but the result is always a floatingpoint number.
Examples of Python Power Function
Let’s take a look at some examples to understand how the pow() function works.
Example 1: Using inbuilt pow() function without modulus
Below is the code implementation and explanation of the example
base = 5 exponent = 3 result = pow(base, exponent) print(result)
Output:
125
Explanation: In the above example, we have passed the base value as 5 and the exponent value as 3 to the pow() function. As we have not provided the modulus argument, the pow() function returns the result of the power operation, which is 125 (i.e., 5 raised to the power of 3).
Example 2: Using the inbuilt pow() function to calculate powers of a number with modulus
Below is the code implementation and explanation of the example
result = pow(2, 3, 5) print(result)
Output:
3
Explanation: In this example, we use the pow() function to calculate the power of 2 to the exponent of 3 with a modulus of 5. The modulus parameter specifies that the result should be computed modulo 5, which means that the remainder after dividing the result by 5 is returned.
So, 2 to the power of 3 is 8. And, 8 modulo 5 is 3, since 8 divided by 5 leaves a remainder of 3. Therefore, the function returns result 3.
Example 3: Using math.pow() function to calculate powers of a number with fractional exponent
Below is the code implementation and explanation of the example
import math result = math.pow(27, 1.0/3) print(result)
Output:
3.0
Explanation: In this example, we use math.pow() function to calculate the cube root of 27. We pass the base number 27 and the fractional exponent 1/3 to the math.pow() function. The function returns the result 3.0, which is the cube root of 27.
Example 4: Using the math.pow() function to calculate the powers of a negative number
Below is the code implementation and explanation of the example
import math result = math.pow(2, 3) print(result)
Output:
8.0
Explanation: In this example, we use math.pow() function to calculate the power of 2 to the exponent of 3. The result is 8.0, which is the same as multiplying 2 by itself 3 times: 2 x 2 x 2 = 8.
Point to Note: math.pow() function works with floatingpoint numbers, so it can return decimal values even if the result is an integer. In this case, the result is 8.0, which is a floatingpoint number.
Example 5: Using the inbuilt pow() function to calculate the power of a complex number
Below is the code implementation and explanation of the example
result = pow(1 + 2j, 3) print(result)
Output:
(112j)
Explanation: In this example, we use the pow() function to calculate the power of a complex number (1 + 2j) raised to the exponent of 3. The function returns the complex number (112j), which is the result of raising the complex number to the power of 3.
Exceptions of Python Power Function
The pow() function in Python may raise a few different exceptions in certain cases. Here are some common exceptions that can be raised:

TypeError: This exception is raised if the base and/or exponent arguments are not of the correct type. For example, if the base is a string or a list, a TypeError will be raised.

ValueError: This exception is raised if the exponent argument is not valid. For example, if the exponent is a string or a list, a ValueError will be raised. Also, if an exponent is a floatingpoint number and the base is negative or zero, a ValueError will be raised.

OverflowError: This exception is raised if the result of the power operation exceeds the maximum representable value for the given data type. For example, if the base is an integer and the exponent is a large negative integer, the result may exceed the maximum representable value for the integer data type.

ZeroDivisionError: This exception is raised if the base is zero and the exponent is negative.
It’s important to handle these exceptions appropriately to ensure that your program runs smoothly and does not crash unexpectedly.
Summary
Here is a summary of key points about the power function in Python:
 pow() function is a builtin function in Python that calculates the powers of a number.
 It takes two or three arguments: the base number, the exponent, and an optional modulus.
 The function returns the result of raising the base to the exponent power, optionally taking the modulus.
 Python has another pow() function available in the math module, which works similarly to the builtin pow() function but doesn’t accept the modulus argument.
 pow() function can handle various data types such as integers, floatingpoint numbers, and complex numbers.
 The function can raise different exceptions such as TypeError, ValueError, OverflowError, and ZeroDivisionError in certain cases.
FAQs
Here are some frequently asked questions about the Python Power Function:
Q1: What is the difference between the builtin pow() function and the math.pow() function in Python?
A: The pow() function is a builtin function in Python, while math.pow() is a function in the math module. The pow() function can take three arguments (base, exponent, and modulus), while math.pow() only takes two arguments (base and exponent). Additionally, the pow() function can handle different data types, including complex numbers, while math.pow() only works with floatingpoint numbers.
Q2: What is the modulus argument in the pow() function used for?
A: The modulus argument is an optional third argument that specifies the modulus when computing the power of a number. It returns the remainder of the result of raising the base to the power of the exponent divided by the modulus.
Q3: What exceptions can be raised by the pow() function in Python?
A: The pow() function can raise several exceptions, including TypeError (when the arguments are of the wrong type), ValueError (when the arguments are of the right type but the function cannot compute the result), OverflowError (when the result is too large to be represented), and ZeroDivisionError (when the base is zero, and the exponent is negative).
Q4: Can the pow() function handle negative exponents?
A: Yes, the pow() function can handle negative exponents. When the exponent is negative, the function calculates the reciprocal of the base raised to the absolute value of the exponent.
Q5: How do I use the pow() function to calculate the powers of complex numbers?
A: To calculate the powers of complex numbers using the pow() function, you can pass in the complex number as the base and the exponent. The function will return the complex result of raising the base to the power of the exponent.