Remarks on the Algebra of Non First Normal Form Relations

Gerhard Jaeschke, Hans-Jörg Schek


Usually, the first normal form condition of the relational model of data is imposed. Presently, a broader class of data base applications like office information systems is considered where this restriction is not convenient. Therefore, an extension of the relational model is proposed consisting of Non First Normal Form (NF²) relations. The relational algebra is enriched mainly by so called nest and unnest operations which transform between NF² relations and the usual ones. We state some properties of these operations and some rules which occur in combination with the operations of the usual relational algebra. Since we propose to use the NF² model also for the internal data model these rules are important not only for theoretical reasons but also for a practical implementation.


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