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# Problem Set 5 Solutions

Math 4613, Modern Algebra I Fall 2003

Problems 4.3.6, 4.3.8, 4.3.21, 4.3.22, 4.4.2, 4.4.5, 4.4.8, 4.5.1, 4.5.3 4.3.6 Let V be the group of vectors in the plane, with vector addition as the binary operation. Show that the vectors that issue from the origin and have endpoints on a ﬁxed line through the origin form a subgroup. What are the cosets relative to this subgroup? Proof: The vectors that issue from the origin and have endpoints on a ﬁxed line are all multiples of one of the nonzero vectors on the line. Pick one vector and call it v. Then the subset is S = {av | a ∈ F}. Then av + bv = (a + b)v ∈ S , and −(av) = (−a)v ∈ S , so S is a subgroup. The cosets of S = {av | a ∈ R} are the sets S + w = {av + w | a ∈ F}. This is a line parallel to S , passing through w. 4.3.8 Show that the elements of ﬁnite order in any abelian group form a subgroup. Proof: Let G be an abelian group and H the subset consisting of all elements of ﬁnite order. Then let a, b ∈ H , and suppose o(a) = m and o(b) = n. Then (ab)mn = (ab)(ab) · · · (ab) (mn times), and since G is abelian, we may simplify this to (ab)mn = amn bmn = (am )n (bn )m = e. Therefore, ab has ﬁnite order, so ab ∈ H . Also let a ∈ H with order m. Then am = 1, so 1 = (am )−1 = a−m = (a−1 )m . This shows that a−1 has ﬁnite order, so a−1 ∈ H . Thus H is a subgroup. 4.3.21 Let S be a nonempty subset of a group G, and let C (S ) = {x ∈ G | xs = sx, s ∈ S }. Show that C (S ) is a subgroup of G. What is C (G)? Solution: This is answered in the back of the book. 4.3.22 Find the centralizer of each of the following subsets of S3 : (a) {(1 2 3)} Solution: We write C (σ ) for C ({σ }), where the set S = {σ } contains a single element. In this case, note that if σ = (1 2 3), then σ commutes with itself, with σ 2 , and with the identity. However, (1 2 3)(1 2) = (1 3), but (1 2)(1 2 3) = (2 3) = (1 3). So, σ does not commute with the transposition (1 2), and similarly it does not commute with the other transpositions. We conclude that C (σ ) = {1, σ, σ 2 } = {(1), (1 2 3), (1 3 2)}. 1

so H = [4] = [8]. the cyclic group generated by a. 6. (It is obvious that the group G = {1} has no proper subgroups.) Now assume that G has no proper subgroups. or [ap ]. C (τ ) = {1. and we saw in part (a) that τ does not commute with the 3-cycles σ or σ 2 . Therefore H contains at least p elements. This shows that H = G. These are 1. a = 1. The subgroup of order 12 is the full group Z12 . we must have that G = [a]. We would then have Z × Z = [α] for some element α = (a. so G = Zn for some n. so G has no proper subgroups. 4. But there are at most p elements in G itself. 11}. τ } = {(1). 1. So either G is isomorphic to Z. we note that C (S1 ∪ S2 ) = C (S1 ) ∩ C (S2 ).(b) {(1 2)} Solution: Let τ = (1 2). and 11. so K = [3] = [9]. that is. is a proper subgroup of G. so G = Zp . and it may be generated by 3 or 9. We have shown that n cannot be composite so. is a subgroup of G. So. so if and only if g ∈ C (S1 ) and g ∈ C (S2 ). so o(a) = p.4. (1 2)}. and o(a) = 1. τ does not commute with the other transposition. Since G has no proper subgroups. Solution: We note that Z12 = {0. The subgroup of order 3 is H = {0. This is a contradiction. G is cyclic. Let a ∈ G. 4. that is. and all elements n relatively prime to 12 are generators of Z12 . the cyclic subgroup generated by a is contained in H . 9}.4. as n > 1. [a]. In this case. · · · . 3. n is prime. we may list the subgroups in question. Now. Suppose H is a subgroup of G that contains some a = 1. the answers to parts (a) and (b) imply that C ({σ. 8}. 5. Notice that (1 2)(1 3) = (1 3 2). 1 < p < n. b). 4. So G = Z.2 Find all possible sets of generators of the subgroups of orders 3. Therefore. a has order n in G. since g ∈ C (S1 ∪ S2 ) if and only if gs = sg for all s ∈ S1 ∪ S2 . b) ∈ Z × Z. 7. But then. This shows that G is cyclic of prime order. or G is isomorphic to Zn for some n. etc. but (1 3)(1 2) = (1 2 3) = (1 3 2). We consider the case when G = {1} (the other being trivial). Proof: First.5 Show that a group G has no proper subgroups if and only if it is cyclic of prime order (or G = {1}). the cyclic subgroup generated by ap . So. Proof: Suppose Z × Z were cyclic. [a] < H . (c) {(1 2 3).8 Show that Z × Z is not cyclic. 3. Now. But then every element in Z × Z is an integral multiple of α = (a. τ }) = C (σ ) ∩ C (τ ) = {1}. of prime order. where p is prime. and so ap has order q since (ap )q = an = 1 and no smaller power of ap can equal 1. 4. then n = pq for some integers p and q . Z has proper subgroups such as 5Z. The subgroup of order 4 is K = {0. If n is composite. and it is generated by either 4 or 8. assume that G is cyclic. Then o(a)|p. 4. Since subgroups of any given order are unique. 2. 2 . and 12 of Z12 . Similarly. (1 2)} Solution: Before answering this question.4.

Proof: We recall. Also. that the group of planar symmetries of a regular n-gon centered at (0. σ 4-cycle [σ ].In particular. · · · . mr. Therefore it is impossible for both (1. consisting of those permutations ﬁxing the integer j for j = 1. rn−1 . so 0 = n(±1). · · · . This contradicts the fact that 1 = n(±1).5.) There are four 6-element subgroups in S4 which are isomorphic to S3 . (You can construct these directly as symmetries of a square if you number the vertices 1. Klein 4-group number of elements 1 24 4 3 2 6 8 12 4 how many subgroups 1 1 3 4 9 4 3 1 4 4. similarly. m. and so b = ±1. b) for some m. mrn−1 }. and with n!/2 elements. (1 2)(3 4).) There are also four subgroups isomorphic to the Klein 4-group. 3 . 2. (a b). r2 . r. called An . ±1). including the trivial ones. σ 3-cycle [σ ]. and 9 of order 2. (1 3)(2 4). mr2 . the alternating group on n letters. so a = ±1. Solution: The proper subgroups of S3 are given in the back of the book. (a b)(c d)}. 1) to be multiples of the same element (a. 3 of order 4. These are generated by a 4-cycle (a b c d) and a transposition (a c). 3. so we must have n = 0. There are 16 such subgroups. equal to 30. (1 4)(2 3)}. b). 0) is Dn = {1. or 4. 1) = n(±1. Three of these take the form {(1). b). (Each group Sn contains such a subgroup. 3. any element σ ∈ S4 generates a cyclic subgroup [σ ] with o(σ ) elements. and one is of the form {(1). There are also 3 8-element subgroups isomorphic to D4 which can be constructed as symmetries of a square. 0) = m(a. σ of order 2 S3 D4 A4 K .5. (c d). so we see that ma = 1. 2. There is a subgroup of order 12 consisting of all even permutations. so Z × Z is not cyclic. 4 in diﬀerent ways.3 Show that |Z (Dn )| = 1 or 2 according to whether n is even or odd. First. But then. (0. 0) and (0. 4 of order 3. (1. 1) = n(±1. so a|1. (0. There are 28 proper subgroups of S4 . 4. making the total number of subgroups. The elements in S4 are of four sorts: Cycle structure how many 4-cycle (a b c d) 6 8 3-cycle (a b c) 6 2-cycle (a b) 3 (a b)(c d) order 4 3 2 2 The subgroups of S4 are of several types. using notation from class. That’s it! Subgroup type {(1)} S4 [σ ].1 Find all subgroups of S3 and S4 .

The rest of the arguement above applies to show that only 1 commutes with all elements of Dn . so Z (Dn ) = {1} when n is odd. This shows that. in computing Z (Dn ) we see that. and m is not in Z (Dn ). Since any element of any group also commutes with any power of itself. so it commutes with all elements of G. then rn/2 (rotation through angle π ) satisﬁes that rn/2 m = mrn/2 . if n is even. giving rise to the rule that rj m = mrn−j . when n is even. When n is odd. Note that equation (1) shows that no other power of r commutes with m. This implies that rn = m2 = 1. So no reﬂection mrj is in Z (Dn ). there is no element rn/2 in Dn . Z (Dn ) = {1. r commutes with all powers of r. So {1. r(mrj ) = (rm)rj = mrn−1 rj = mrj (rn−1 ). so no other power of r can be in Z (Dn ). so any reﬂection mrj does not commute with r either.where r is counterclockwise rotation through angle 2π/n and m is a vertical reﬂection. so rn/2 commutes with m. (1) Now. so with all reﬂections mrj . rn/2 } exactly. since it does not commute with r. In fact. We also note that rm = mrn−1 . 4 . rn/2 } ⊆ Z (Dn ).