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bernoulli numbers

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September 6th, 2005

Matilde N. Laln

I will mostly follow [2].

Definition and some identities

Definition 1 Bernoulli numbers are defined as B0 = 1 and recursively as

m1

X m + 1

Bk ,

(m + 1)Bm =

k

k=0

1

, B5 = 0, B6 =

so we find B1 = 21 , B2 = 61 , B3 = 0, B4 = 30

1

42 , . . . , B12

691

= 2730

,...

Lemma 2

X

t

tm

=

.

B

m

et 1

m!

m=0

PROOF.

Write

t

et 1

tm

m=0 am m!

t=

and multiply by et 1,

n X

X

t

n=1

n!

am

m=0

tm

,

m!

m

X

m+1

ak = 0.

k

k=0

Sm (n) = 1m + . . . + (n 1)m ,

then

(m + 1)Sm (n) =

m

X

m+1

Bk nm+1k .

k

k=0

PROOF.

In ekt =

m=0

m=0 k

Sm (n)

tm

m!

tm

ent 1 t

= 1 + et + . . . + e(n1)t =

m!

t

et 1

=

X

k=1

nk

tk1 X tj

Bj

k!

j!

j=0

1

Definition 4

m

X

m

Bk xmk

Bm (x) =

k

k=0

So B0 (x) = 1, B1 (x) = x 12 , etc.

Then Theorem 3 may be stated as

Sm (n) =

1

(Bm+1 (n) Bm+1 ).

m+1

Lemma 5

X

tm

text

B

(x)

=

.

m

et 1

m!

m=0

PROOF.

0

Bm

(x)

m1

X

k=0

Also

m

(m k)Bk xm1k = mBm1 (x).

k

m

1 X m+1

Bm (x)dx =

Bk = 0,

m+1

k

0

k=0

P

tm

Now let F (x, t) =

m=0 Bm (x) m! , differentiating,

Z

m 1.

X

tm

F (x, t) =

Bm1 (x)

= tF (x, t).

x

(m 1)!

m=1

Z 1

Z 1

et 1

F (x, t)dx =

T (t)ext dx = T (t)

t

0

0

but

Z

1

0

X

tm 1

F (x, t)dx =

Bm (x)dx = 1

m! 0

m=0

Proposition 6

1. Bm (x + 1) Bm (x) =

Pm m

k=0

2. Bm (1 x) = (1)m Bm (x).

P

1 Pk

r k m (Rademacher [4]).

3. Bm = m

r=0 (1) r r

k=0 k+1

Pm

k+m m B (k) = m! (Ruiz [6]).

4.

m

k=0 (1)

k

Pk1

Bm x + kj .

5. Bm (kx) = k q1 j=0

2

Let f (x) smooth. Since B10 (x) = 1,

1

f (x)dx =

= ... =

q

X

m1

(1)

m=1

Evaluating in x = 1,

f (1) =

f (x)dx +

q

X

m=1

B1 (x)f 0 (x)dx

Z 1

Bq (x) (q)

Bm (x) (m1) 1

q

f

(x) + (1)

f (x)dx

m!

q!

0

0

m Bm

(1)

B1 (x)f (x)|10

m!

(f

(m1)

(1) f

(m1)

q1

(0)) + (1)

Bq (x) (q)

f (x)dx.

q!

b

X

f (n) =

f (x)dx +

n=a+1

where

q

X

(1)m

m=1

(1)q1

Rq =

q!

Bm (m1)

(f

(b) f (m1) (a)) + Rq

m!

Proposition 7 We have:

Z

(x2

where

Pk (x) =

PROOF.

Z

x log xdx

=

+ a2 )(x2 + b2 )

k+1 Pk

2

2 log a

Pk

a2 b2

2 log b

x

x (2k+1 2)ik+1

2ik+1

Bk+1

Bk+1

2k Bk+1

+

k+1

i

2i

k+1

x dx

(a1 b1 )

=

2

2

(x2 + a2 )(x2 + b2 )

2 cos

2 (b a )

by first computing

Z

for

0 < < 1,

a1

x dx

.

=

x2 + a2

2 cos

2

xk+1

1

Pk (x) =

+

k+1 k+1

k+1

X

j>1 (odd)

(1)

j+1

2

k+1

Pk+1j (x).

j

a, b 6= 0

The idea, suggested by Rodriguez-Villegas, is to obtain the value of the integral in the

statement by differentiating k times the integral of with and then evaluating at = 1.

Let

(a1 b1 )

f () =

2

2

2 cos

2 (b a )

which is the value of the integral with . In other words, we have

Z

x logk xdx

(k)

.

f (1) =

(x2 + a2 )(x2 + b2 )

0

By developing in power series around = 1, we obtain

X logn a logn b

f () cos

=

( 1)n .

2

2(b2 a2 )

n!

n=0

By differentiating k times,

logn+k a logn+k b

(j)

( 1)n .

=

f (kj) () cos

2

2(b2 a2 )

n!

j

k

X

k

j=0

n=0

We evaluate in = 1,

k

X

(1)

j+1

2

j=0 (odd)

k (kj) j

(logk a logk b)

=

f

(1)

.

j

2

2(b2 a2 )

As a consequence, we obtain

f

(k)

1

(1) =

k+1

k+1

X

(1)

j+1

2

j>1 (odd)

f

(1)

.

+

j

2

(k + 1)(a2 b2 )

When k = 0,

f (0) (1) = f (1) =

P0

log a log b

=

a2 b2

2

2 log a

P0

a2 b2

2 log b

Theorem 8 We have the following identities:

For 1 l n:

snl (12 , . . . , (2n 1)2 )

nl

X

2(l + s)

1

2

2

B2s

(22s 2)(1)s+1 .

=n

snls (2 , . . . , (2n 2) )

l+s

2s

s=0

For 1 n:

(2n)!

2n n!

= 2n

n

X

s=1

1

sns (22 , . . . , (2n 2)2 ) B2s (22s 1)(1)s+1 .

s

4

For 0 l n:

(2l + 1)snl (22 , . . . , (2n)2 )

nl

X

2(l + s)

2

2

snls (1 , . . . , (2n 1) )B2s

= (2n + 1)

(22s 2)(1)s+1 .

2s

s=0

For 1 n:

n

X

s=1

where

22s (22s 1)

B2s = 2(2n 1)!

s

1

P

sl (a1 , . . . , ak ) =

i1 <...<il ai1 . . . ail

if

if

if

l=0

0<lk

k<l

k

k

X

Y

sl (a1 , . . . , ak )xkl

(x + ai ) =

i=1

l=0

Theorem 9 (Euler)

2(2m) = (1)m+1

PROOF.

We will need

(2)2m

B2m .

(2m)!

cot x =

X

1

x

2

.

x

n2 2 x2

n=1

Y

x2

sin x = x

1 2 2 .

n

n=1

Then

X

X

x2m

x2 X x 2k

(2m)

=

1

2

x cot x = 1 2

n2 2

n

2m

n=1

m=1

k=0

x cot x = x

X

(2ix)n

cos x

i(eix + eix )

2ix

B

= x ix

=

ix

+

=

1

+

n

sin x

e eix

e2ix 1

n!

n=2

2

For instance, (2) = 6 , (4) =

Corollary 10

4

90 ,

etc.

5

2(2m)!

2m

2. B2m

or B2m (1)m+1 (2)

2m as m .

PROOF. The first assertion is consequence of the fact that (2m) is positive. The

second is consequence of the fact that (2m) > 1 implies

|B2m | >

2(2m)!

.

(2)2m

B2m

(p1)|2m, p prime

1

(mod 1)

p

Definition 12 For every rational number r and p prime write r = pk ab where a, b are

integers such that p 6 |ab. Then ordp (r) = k. We say that r is p-integral if ordp (r) 0.

Lemma 13 Let p be a prime number and k a positive integer, then

1.

pk

k+1

is p-integral.

2.

pk

k+1

0 (mod p) if k 2.

3.

pk2

k+1

is p-integral if k 3 and p 5.

k

ka

p

PROOF. By induction, k + 1 pk . Let k + 1 = pa q. Then k+1

= p q 1 implies

k a. For the second case use that k + 1 < pk for k 2. The third case is consequence of

k + 1 < pk2 for k 3 and p 5.

Proposition 14 Let p be a prime and m a positive integer. Then pBm is p-integral. Also,

if m is even pBm Sm (p) (mod p)

PROOF. For the first statement we will use induction. It is clear for m = 1. Now note

that for m k we have

m

m+1

m+1

=

mk+1 k

k

Then Theorem 3 becomes

m

m

X

X

m

nm+1k

m

nk+1

Bk

Sm (n) =

Bmk

=

k

m+1k

k+1

k

k=0

k=0

m

pk

pBmk

k+1

k

is p-integral for k = 1, . . . , m, but that is true by induction and Lemma 13.

6

(1)

m

pk

ordp

1

pBmk

k+1

k

for k 1. By Lemma 13 this is true for k 2. The case with k = 1 corresponds to

m

2 (pBm1 )p and it is true because m is even and the only nontrivial case is with m = 2.

Lemma 15 Let p be a prime. If p 1 6 |m, then Sm (p) 0 (mod p). If p 1|m then

Sm (p) 1 (mod p)

PROOF.

Sm (p) = 1m + . . . + (p 1)m 1m + g m + . . . + g (p2)m (mod p)

and

(g m 1)Sm (p) g m(p1) 1 0 (mod p)

the result follows. Now suppose that p 1|m, then

Sm (p) 1 + 1 + . . . + 1 p 1 (mod p)

PROOF. (Theorem 11) Assume m is even. By Proposition 14, pBm is p-integral and

Sm (p) (mod p). By Lemma 15, Bm is a p-integer if p 1 6 |m and pBm 1 (mod p) if

p 1|m. Then

X 1

Bm +

p

p1|m

More Congruences

Corollary 16 If p 1 6 |2m, then B2m is p-integral. If p 1|2m then pB2m + 1 is p-integral

and

1

ordp (pB2m + 1) = ordp p B2m +

1

p

so pB2m 1 (mod p). Also 6 always divides the denominator of B2m .

From now on write Bm =

Um

Vm

Vm Sm (n) Um n (mod n2 )

PROOF.

m

nk1

2

Bmk

n2 = Am

k n .

k

k+1

m

If we show that for p|n, p 6= 2, 3, then ordp (Am

k ) 0 and if p|n, p = 2 or 3, ordp (Ak ) 1,

m

then (Ak , n) must divide 6 and the same is true for the greater common divisor between

the sum of Am

k and n. Then we may write

Sm (n) = Bm n +

An2

lB

with (B, n) = 1 and l|6. Multiplying by BVm and using the fact that 6|Vm (by Corollary

16) the result is proved.

Use Corollary 16 to see that ordp (Bmk ) 1. Assume p|n and p 6= 2, 3. The cases

k = 1, 2 are simple. If k 3,

nk1

ordp Bmk

1 + (k 1)ordp n ordp (k + 1) k 2 ordp (k + 1) 0

k+1

by Lemma 15.

Now let p = 2. If k = 1, then Bm1 = 0 for m > 2 and A21 = 2B1 12 = 12 . For k > 1

note that Bmk = 0 unless k is even or k = m 1. k even implies ord2 (k + 1) = 0 and

1 m2

which has order greater or equal to 1.

k = m 1, Am

m1 = 2 n

m ) 1 and ord (Am ) 1. For k 4, one shows that

When

p

=

3,

ord

(A

3

3

2

3

ord3

3k2

k+1

0.

Sm (p) Bm p (mod p2 ).

PROOF. By Theorem 11, p 6 |Vm . Now put n = p in the above Proposition and divide

by Vm which is permissible since p 6 |Vm .

Proposition 19 (Voronois congruence) Let m even and > 1. Suppose that a and n are

positive coprime integers. Then

(am 1)Um mam1 Vm

n1

X

j m1

j=1

PROOF.

ja

(mod n).

n

j m am rjm + mqj nrjm1 (mod n2 ).

j m am rjm + mam1 qj nj m1 (mod n2 ).

Summing for j = 1, . . . , n 1,

m

Sm (n)a

m1

Sm (n) + ma

n1

X

j=1

8

m1

ja

(mod n2 ).

n

Bm

m

is p-integral.

congruence put n = pt . Then (am 1)Um 0 (mod pt ). Now let a be a primitive root

Um

is

modulo p. Since p 1 6 |m, then p 6 |am 1. Then Um 0 (mod pt ). Then Bmm = mV

m

p-integer.

Theorem 21 (Kummer congruences) Suppose m 2 is even, p prime, and p 1 6 |m. Let

m1

Cm = (1p m )Bm . If m0 m (mod (pe )), then Cm0 Cm (mod pe ).

PROOF. We will see the case e = 1. Let t = ordp (m). By Proposition 20, pt |Um . In

m

Voronois congruence, set n = pe+t . Since pt divides both Um and m, and mV

pt is prime to

p, we obtain,

pe+t1

X

ja

(am 1)Bm

m1

m1

a

j

(mod pe ).

m

pe+t

j=1

0

(am 1)Bm0

(am 1)Bm

(mod p).

m0

m

0

0 (mod p). Then

Bm

Bm0

(mod p).

0

m

m

Definition 22 An odd prime number p is said to be regular if p does not divide the numerator of any of the numbers B2 , B4 , . . . , Bp3 . The prime 3 is regular. Equivalently, p

is regular if it does not divide the class number of Q(p )

The first irregular primes are 37 and 59.

Theorem 23 (Kummer) Let p be a regular prime. Then xp + y p = z p has no solution in

positive integers.

Theorem 24 (Jensen) The set of irregular primes is infinite.

PROOF. Let {p1 , . . . , ps } be the set of irregular

primes. Let k 2 be even and n =

B

n

k(p1 1) . . . (ps 1). Choose k large such that n > 1 and p prime such that ordp Bnn > 0.

Then p 1 6 |n and so p 6= pi . We will prove that p is also irregular.

Let n m (mod p 1) where 0 < m < p 1. Then m is even and 2 m p 3. By

the Kummer congruence,

Bn

Bm

(mod p).

n

m

Since ordp Bnn > 0 and ordp Bnn Bmm > 0, then

Bm

= ordp Bm > 0

ordp

m

and p is irregular.

9

References

[1] D. Castellanos, The Ubiquitous Pi. Part I.Math. Mag. 61, 6798, 1988.

[2] K. Ireland, M. Rosen, A classical introduction to modern number theory. Second edition.

Graduate Texts in Mathematics, 84. Springer-Verlag, New York, 1990. xiv+389 pp.

[3] M. N. Laln, Mahler measure of some n-variable polynomial families, (preprint, September 2004, to appear in J. Number Theory)

[4] H. Rademacher, Topics in Analytic Number Theory, Die Grundlehren der Mathematischen, Wissenschaften. New York: Springer-Verlag, 1973.

[5] S. Roman, The Bernoulli Polynomials. 4.2.2 The Umbral Calculus. New York: Academic

Press, pp. 93100, 1984.

[6] Eric Weissteins World of Mathematics, http://mathworld.wolfram.com/BernoulliNumber.html

10

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