Subgroup series

Subgroup series

In mathematics, a subgroup series is a chain of subgroups:

1 = A_0 \leq A_1 \leq \cdots \leq A_n = G.

Subgroup series can simplify the study of a group to the study of simpler subgroups and their relations, and several subgroup series can be invariantly defined and are important invariants of groups. A subgroup series is used in the subgroup method.



Normal series, subnormal series

A subnormal series (also normal series, normal tower, subinvariant series, or just series) of a group G is a sequence of subgroups, each a normal subgroup of the next one. In a standard notation

1 = A_0\triangleleft A_1\triangleleft \cdots \triangleleft A_n = G.

There is no requirement made that Ai be a normal subgroup of G, only a normal subgroup of Ai+1. The quotient groups Ai+1/Ai are called the factor groups of the series.

If in addition each Ai is normal in G, then the series is called a normal series, when this term is not used for the weaker sense, or an invariant series.


A series with the additional property that AiAi+1 for all i is called a series without repetition; equivalently, each Ai is a proper subgroup of Ai+1. The length of a series is the number of strict inclusions Ai < Ai+1. If the series has no repetition the length is n.

For a subnormal series, the length is the number of nontrivial factor groups. Every (nontrivial) group has a normal series of length 1, namely 1 \triangleleft G, and any proper normal subgroup gives a normal series of length 2. For simple groups, the trivial series of length 1 is the longest subnormal series possible.

Ascending series, descending series

Series can be notated in either ascending order:

1 = A_0\leq A_1\leq \cdots \leq A_n = G

or descending order:

G = B_0\geq B_1\geq \cdots \geq B_n = 1.

For a given finite series, there is no distinction between an "ascending series" or "descending series" beyond notation. For infinite series, there is a distinction: the ascending series

1 = A_0\leq A_1\leq \cdots \leq G

has a smallest term, a second smallest term, and so forth, but no largest proper term, no second largest term, and so forth, while conversely the descending series

G = B_0\geq B_1\geq \cdots \geq 1

has a largest term, but no smallest proper term.

Further, given a recursive formula for producing a series, the terms produced are either ascending or descending, and one calls the resulting series an ascending or descending series, respectively. For instance the derived series and lower central series are descending series, while the upper central series is an ascending series.

Noetherian groups, Artinian groups

A group that satisfies the ascending chain condition on subgroups is called a Noetherian group, and a group that satisfies the descending chain condition is called an Artinian group, by analogy with Noetherian rings and Artinian rings. The ACC is equivalent to the maximal condition: every non-empty collection of subgroups has a maximal member, and the DCC is equivalent to the analogous minimal condition.

A group can be Noetherian but not Artinian, such as the infinite cyclic group, and unlike for rings, a group can be Artinian but not Noetherian, such as the Prüfer group.

Every finite group is clearly Noetherian and Artinian.

Homomorphic images and subgroups of Noetherian groups are Noetherian, and an extension of a Noetherian group by a Noetherian group is Noetherian. Analogous results hold for Artinian groups.

Noetherian groups are equivalently those such that every subgroup is finitely generated, which is stronger than the group itself being finitely generated: the free group on 2 or finitely more generators is finitely generated, but contains free groups of infinite rank.

Noetherian groups need not be finite extensions of polycyclic groups.[1]

Infinite and transfinite series

Infinite subgroup series can also be defined and arise naturally, in which case the specific (totally ordered) indexing set becomes important, and there is a distinction between ascending and descending series. An ascending series 1 = A_0\leq A_1\leq \cdots \leq G where the Ai are indexed by the natural numbers may simply be called an infinite ascending series, and conversely for an infinite descending series. If the subgroups are more generally indexed by ordinal numbers, one obtains a transfinite series,[2] such as this ascending series:

1 = A_0\leq A_1\leq \cdots \leq A_\omega \leq A_{\omega+1} = G

Given a recursive formula for producing a series, one can define a transfinite series by transfinite recursion by defining the series at limit ordinals by A_\lambda := \bigcup_{\alpha < \lambda} A_\alpha (for ascending series) or A_\lambda := \bigcap_{\alpha < \lambda} A_\alpha (for descending series). Fundamental examples of this construction are the transfinite lower central series and upper central series.

Other totally ordered sets arise rarely, if ever, as indexing sets of subgroup series.[citation needed] For instance, one can define but rarely sees naturally occurring bi-infinite subgroup series (series indexed by the integers):

1 \leq \cdots \leq A_{-1} \leq A_0\leq A_1 \leq \cdots \leq G

Comparison of series

A refinement of a series is another series containing each of the terms of the original series. Refinement gives a partial order on series, and they form a lattice, while subnormal series and normal series form sublattices. Of particular interest are maximal series without repetition.

Two subnormal series are said to be equivalent or isomorphic if there is a bijection between the sets of their factor groups such that the corresponding factor groups are isomorphic.


Maximal series

Equivalently, a subnormal series for which each of the Ai is a maximal normal subgroup of Ai+1. Equivalently, a composition series is a normal series for which each of the factor groups are simple.

Solvable and Nilpotent

  • A solvable group, or soluble group, is one with a subnormal series whose factor groups are all abelian.
  • A nilpotent series is a subnormal series such that successive quotients are nilpotent.
A nilpotent series exists if and only if the group is solvable.
  • A central series is a subnormal series such that successive quotients are central.
A central series exists if and only if the group is nilpotent.

Functional series

Some subgroup series are defined functionally, in terms of subgroups such as the center and operations such as the commutator. These include:

  • Lower central series
  • Upper central series
  • Derived series
  • Lower Fitting series
  • Upper Fitting series


There are series coming from subgroups of prime power order or prime power index, related to ideas such as Sylow subgroups.


  1. ^ Ol'shanskii AYu (1979). "Infinite Groups with Cyclic Subgroups". Soviet Math. Dokl. 20: 343–346.  (English translation of Dokl. Akad. Nauk SSSR, 245, 785–787)
  2. ^ Sharipov, R.A. (2009). "Transfinite normal and composition series of groups". arXiv:0908.2257 [math.GR]. 

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Нужно сделать НИР?

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Subgroup growth — Im mathematics, subgroup growth is a branch of group theory, dealing with quantitative questions about subgroups of a given group. [citebook|title=Subgroup Growth|author=Alexander Lubotzky, Dan Segal|year=2003|publisher=Birkhäuser|id=ISBN… …   Wikipedia

  • Central series — In mathematics, especially in the fields of group theory and Lie theory, a central series is a kind of normal series of subgroups or Lie subalgebras, expressing the idea that the commutator is nearly trivial. For groups, this is an explicit… …   Wikipedia

  • Chief series — In abstract algebra, a chief series is a maximal normal series for a group. It is similar to a composition series, though the two concepts are distinct in general: a chief series is a maximal normal series, while a composition series is a maximal …   Wikipedia

  • Composition series — In abstract algebra, a composition series provides a way to break up an algebraic structure, such as a group or a module, into simple pieces. The need for considering composition series in the context of modules arises from the fact that many… …   Wikipedia

  • Commutator subgroup — In mathematics, more specifically in abstract algebra, the commutator subgroup or derived subgroup of a group is the subgroup generated by all the commutators of the group.[1][2] The commutator subgroup is important because it is the smallest… …   Wikipedia

  • Focal subgroup theorem — In abstract algebra, the focal subgroup theorem describes the fusion of elements in a Sylow subgroup of a finite group. The focal subgroup theorem was introduced in (Higman 1958) and is the first major application of the transfer according to… …   Wikipedia

  • Omega and agemo subgroup — In mathematics, or more specifically group theory, the omega and agemo subgroups described the so called power structure of a finite p group. They were introduced in (Hall 1933) where they were used to describe a class of finite p groups whose… …   Wikipedia

  • Ascendant subgroup — In mathematics, in the field of group theory, a subgroup of a group is said to be ascendant if there is an ascending series starting from the subgroup and ending at the group, such that every term in the series is a normal subgroup of its… …   Wikipedia

  • Descendant subgroup — In mathematics, in the field of group theory, a subgroup of a group is said to be descendant if there is a descending series starting from the subgroup and ending at the group, such that every term in the series is a normal subgroup of its… …   Wikipedia

  • Principal series representation — In mathematics, the principal series representations of certain kinds of topological group G occur in the case where G is not a compact group. There, by analogy with spectral theory, one expects that the regular representation of G will decompose …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”