In boolean logic, a **disjunctive normal form** (**DNF**) is a canonical normal form of a logical formula consisting of a disjunction of conjunctions; it can also be described as an **OR of ANDs**, a sum of products, or — in philosophical logic — a *cluster concept*.^{[1]} As a normal form, it is useful in automated theorem proving.

A logical formula is considered to be in DNF if it is a disjunction of one or more conjunctions of one or more literals.^{[2]}^{[3]}^{[4]} A DNF formula is in **full disjunctive normal form** if each of its variables appears exactly once in every conjunction and each conjunction appears at most once (up to the order of variables). As in conjunctive normal form (CNF), the only propositional operators in DNF are and (), or (), and not (). The *not* operator can only be used as part of a literal, which means that it can only precede a propositional variable.

The following is a context-free grammar for DNF:

*DNF*→ (*Conjunction*)*DNF**DNF*→ (*Conjunction*)*Conjunction*→*Literal**Conjunction**Conjunction*→*Literal**Literal*→*Variable**Literal*→*Variable*

Where *Variable* is any variable.

For example, all of the following formulas are in DNF:

The formula is in DNF, but not in full DNF; an equivalent full-DNF version is .

The following formulas are **not** in DNF:^{[5]}

- , since an OR is nested within a NOT
- , since an AND is nested within a NOT
- , since an OR is nested within an AND

In classical logic each propositional formula can be converted to DNF^{[6]} ...

The conversion involves using logical equivalences, such as double negation elimination, De Morgan's laws, and the distributive law. Formulas built from the primitive connectives ^{[7]} can be converted to DNF by the following canonical term rewriting system:^{[8]}

The full DNF of a formula can be read off its truth table.^{[9]} For example, consider the formula

- .
^{[10]}

The corresponding truth table is

T T T F T F F T F T T F F T F T T F T F T T F **T**F T T T F F T F F T F T F T T T F **T**F T T F T F T F F T F T F F T T F **T**F T F F F F T F **T**T T F

- The full DNF equivalent of is

- The full DNF equivalent of is

A propositional formula can be represented by one and only one full DNF.^{[12]} In contrast, several *plain* DNFs may be possible. For example, by applying the rule three times, the full DNF of the above can be simplified to . However, there are also equivalent DNF formulas that cannot be transformed one into another by this rule, see the pictures for an example.

It is a theorem that all consistent formulas in propositional logic can be converted to disjunctive normal form.^{[13]}^{[14]}^{[15]}^{[16]} This is called the **Disjunctive Normal Form Theorem**.^{[13]}^{[14]}^{[15]}^{[16]} The formal statement is as follows:

Disjunctive Normal Form Theorem:Suppose is a sentence in a propositional language with sentence letters, which we shall denote by . If is not a contradiction, then it is truth-functionally equivalent to a disjunction of conjunctions of the form , where , and .^{[14]}

The proof follows from the procedure given above for generating DNFs from truth tables. Formally, the proof is as follows:

Suppose is a sentence in a propositional language whose sentence letters are . For each row of 's truth table, write out a corresponding conjunction , where is defined to be if takes the value at that row, and is if takes the value at that row; similarly for , , etc. (the alphabetical ordering of in the conjunctions is quite arbitrary; any other could be chosen instead). Now form the disjunction of all these conjunctions which correspond to rows of 's truth table. This disjunction is a sentence in ,

^{[17]}which by the reasoning above is truth-functionally equivalent to . This construction obviously presupposes that takes the value on at least one row of its truth table; if doesn’t, i.e., if is a contradiction, then is equivalent to , which is, of course, also a sentence in .^{[14]}

This theorem is a convenient way to derive many useful metalogical results in propositional logic, such as, trivially, the result that the set of connectives is functionally complete.^{[14]}

Any propositional formula is built from variables, where .

There are possible literals: .

has non-empty subsets.^{[18]}

This is the maximum number of conjunctions a DNF can have.^{[12]}

A full DNF can have up to conjunctions, one for each row of the truth table.

**Example 1**

Consider a formula with two variables and .

The longest possible DNF has conjunctions:^{[12]}

The longest possible full DNF has 4 conjunctions: they are underlined.

This formula is a tautology.

**Example 2**

Each DNF of the e.g. formula has conjunctions.

The Boolean satisfiability problem on conjunctive normal form formulas is NP-complete. By the duality principle, so is the falsifiability problem on DNF formulas. Therefore, it is co-NP-hard to decide if a DNF formula is a tautology.

Conversely, a DNF formula is satisfiable if, and only if, one of its conjunctions is satisfiable. This can be decided in polynomial time simply by checking that at least one conjunction does not contain conflicting literals.

An important variation used in the study of computational complexity is *k-DNF*. A formula is in *k-DNF* if it is in DNF and each conjunction contains at most k literals.^{[19]}