Dual lattices have many applications inside of lattice theory, theoretical computer science, cryptography and mathematics more broadly. For instance, it is used in the statement of the Poisson summation formula, transference theorems provide connections between the geometry of a lattice and that of its dual, and many lattice algorithms exploit the dual lattice.
For an article with emphasis on the physics / chemistry applications, see Reciprocal lattice. This article focuses on the mathematical notion of a dual lattice.
Despite this identification of ambient Euclidean spaces, it should be emphasized that a lattice and its dual are fundamentally different kinds of objects; one consists of vectors in Euclidean space, and the other consists of a set of linear functionals on that space. Along these lines, one can also give a more abstract definition as follows:
Using the properties listed above, the dual of a lattice can be efficiently calculated, by hand or computer. Certain lattices with importance in mathematics and computer science are dual to each other, and we list some here.
The dual lattice is used in the statement of a general Poisson summation formula.