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MATH. SCAND. 43 (1978), 336-342
FLAT AND PROJECTIVE MODULES
S. JONDRUP
In this paper we study rings in which finitely generated flat modules are
projective.
First we show that if the associated Lie ring of the ring R, is nilpotent, then
cyclic flat left modules are projective if and only if cyclic flat right modules are
projective. Next we give an example of a ring R with solvable Lie ring and a
non projective cyclic flat left module, but having all cyclic flat right modules
projective.
In the second part of the paper we study the trace ideal of the finitely
generated flat module and we prove that for any ideal J of a commutative ring
R, there exist a commutative ring S and a cyclic flat S-module, M, such that R
is a subring of S and the trace ideal of M is IS.
In the last part of the paper we study, when projectivity for finitely generated
flat modules can be lifted modulo the Jacobson radical.
1
In [2] it is shown that if M=R/I is a cyclic flat left R-module, then there
exists a family of elements a; € J (i € N) satisfying a,a,, , =<; for all i such that
M is R-projective if and only if there exists an ie N such that
Ra, = Rajy; =... = Raja, =
Furthermore it follows from Ra;=Ra;,,, that a,,, is idempotent and hence
G4 20141 = O42.
Let us also recall that every cyclic flat left R-module is projectove if and only
if each ascending chain of principal left ideals
Ra, ¢&...G Ra,&..., where a,=a,a,4,
terminates.
2
If R is a ring, the associated Lie ring is denoted G(R) and the product in
G(R) is [x,y] =xy—yx.
Received June 2, 1978.FLAT AND PROJECTIVE MODULES 337
C, is defined by induction as follows, Cy)=G(R) and
Cyer = {buy] | x € G(R) and yeC,}.
D, is also defined by induction. Dy=G(R) and
Dyoi = {Lxy]| xy D,}.
Recall that G(R) is said to be nilpotent if C,=0 for some n and solvable if D,
=0 for some n.
Proposition 1. Let R be a ring and suppose G(R) is nilpotent. Every cyclic flat
right R-module is projective if and only if every cyclic flat left R-module is
projective.
Proor. Suppose that every cyclic flat right R-module is projective. To show
that every cyclic flat left R-module is projective it suffices to prove that each
ascending chain
“ Ray So. SRS. Oy = yay,
terminates.
By our assumption there exists an n such that C,=0. Note that [a,,a;4,]
=4;4,a,—a, and [a;, ,a,— a, a;] =a, , ,4? —a?. Now it is easily seen that for all
n
ay4,a"—a" eC,
Thus a,,,a?=a" for alll i.
Let I denote the right ideal generated by a?, i N.
R/I is a flat right R-module, since a’, ,a?=a?, and consequently R/I is
projective. From the remarks in section 1 it follows that there exists an my such
that a®, is idempotent for m2m, and moreover a’,x,,=a",,, for a suitable x,,. If
we multiply this last equation by a’, on the left, we get a’,,,=a%,. Since
Gy 410,49 =Gn41, WE get the following
Rage: S ROn+2 = Rane, = Ra, S Ray
and the proof of proposition 1 is completed.
We finish this section by an example.
ExampLe 1. The ring R defined below has the following properties:
(i) Cyclic flat right modules are projective.
ii) G(R) is solvable.
Math, Seand, 43 — 22338 S. JONDRUP
(iii) There exists a non-projective cyclic flat left R-module.
(iv) R/rad (R) is commutative and there exists a cyclic flat, non-projective
R/rad (R)-module. (Here rad (R) denotes the prime-radical of R).
Construction of the ring R. Let R be the Z,-algebra on the generators x;,
iéN, and defining relations
Ny XX =X, forall ieN.
Q) Xie Xieaki = Xi4% for alll i,j and ke N.
We have a homomorphism from R to the commutative ring S=Z,[t],i, and (x;4,+%:+)xP. It is now straightforward to check that
D,=0.
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