# LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE

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1 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE In this chapter we discuss the example of Artin and Mumford [AM72] of a complex unirational 3-fold which is not rational in fact, it is not even stably rational). As we will see, the invariant that detects non-stable-rationality is the torsion in the 3rd singular cohomology group. In order to prove that this torsion in nontrivial in the Artin-Mumford example, we follow Beauville s argument in [Bea15], making use of the Brauer group. 1. A topological invariant that detects non-stably-rational varieties In this section all varieties are defined over C. Our goal is to show that if X is a smooth, complex projective variety such that H 3 X, Z) has nonzero torsion, then X is not stably rational. More generally, we will show that two stably birational varieties have the torsion in the third singular cohomology groups isomorphic. Definition 1.1. Two varieties X and Y are stably birational if there are non-negative integers m and n such that X P m and Y P n are birational. With this terminology, a variety is stably rational if and only if it is stably birational to a point. Proposition 1.2. If X and Y are smooth, complete, complex algebraic varieties that are stably birational, then there is an isomorphism of Abelian groups H 3 X, Z) tors H 3 Y, Z) tors. Proof. The assertion follows from the definition of stable birationality if we prove the following two statements: i) If X is any complex algebraic variety and n is a non-negative integer, then H 3 X, Z) tors H 3 X P n, Z) tors. ii) If X and Y are smooth, complete, birational complex algebraic varieties, then H 3 X, Z) tors H 3 Y, Z) tors. For both these assertions, we will make use of the following consequence of the Universal Coefficient theorem: for every topological space W, the group H 1 W, Z) has no torsion see Remark 1.3 in Appendix 1). In order to prove i), note that by Proposition 4.1 in Appendix 1, we have H i P n, Z) Z if i is even, with 0 i 2n, and H i P n, Z) 0, otherwise. In particular, all cohomology groups H i P n, Z) are free and finitely generated, hence by the Künneth theorem, we have H 3 X P n, Z) H i X, Z) Z H j P n, Z) H 3 X, Z) H 1 X, Z). i+j=3 1

2 2 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE Since H 1 X, Z) tors = 0, we conclude that H 3 X P n, Z) tors H 3 X, Z) tors. We now prove ii). It follows from the Weak Factorization theorem that any two smooth complete varieties are joined by a sequence of blow-ups and blow-downs of smooth, complete varieties, along smooth centers. Therefore it is enough to consider the case when Y is the blow-up of X along the smooth subvariety W. In this case, it follows from Proposition 4.3 in Appendix 1 that H 3 Y, Z) H 3 X, Z) H 1 W, Z). Using the fact that H 1 W, Z) has no torsion, we deduce an isomorphism H 3 Y, Z) tors H 3 X, Z) tors. Corollary 1.3. If X is a smooth, complete, complex algebraic variety that is stably rational, then H 3 X, Z) tors = 0. Proof. The assertion follows from the proposition and the fact that if Y is a point, then H 3 Y, Z) = 0. Remark 1.4. It follows from the Universal Coefficient theorem see Remark 1.4 in Appendix 1) that H 3 X, Z) tors Ext 1 Z H2 X, Z), Z ), hence H 3 X, Z) tors 0 if and only if H 2 X, Z) tors 0. Remark 1.5. One can avoid making use of the Weak Factorization theorem in the proof of Proposition 1.2, by using one of the classical results of Hironaka on resolution of singularities. This says that given any rational map ϕ: X Y between smooth, complete varieties, there is a sequence of blow-ups with smooth centers X r X r 1... X 0 = X such that the induced rational map X r Y is a morphism. By applying this to a birational map X Y, the argument in the proof of the proposition implies that we have an isomorphism H 3 X r, Z) tors H 3 X, Z) tors. On the other hand, since X r and Y are smooth and complete, the birational morphism X r Y induces an injective map H 3 Y, Z) H 3 X r, Z). We thus conclude that there is an injective map α: H 3 Y, Z) tors H 3 X, Z) tors. By applying the same argument to the inverse rational map Y X, we conclude that α is an isomorphism. The advantage of this approach is that it can be applied also in positive characteristic, in dimension 3, when resolution of singularities is known, but Weak Factorization is not of course, in this case one has to replace singular cohomology by its l-adic counterpart).

3 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE 3 Remark 1.6. The criterion in Corollary 1.3 can t be applied to prove irrationality of hypersurfaces X P n, with n 4. Indeed, in this case, it follows from the Lefschetz hyperplane theorem that the maps H i X, Z) H i P n, Z) are injective for i n 2. On the other hand, the description of H P n, Z) in Proposition 4.1 in Appendix 1, together with the Universal Coefficient theorem, imply that H i P n, Z) tors = 0 for all i. Therefore H 2 X, Z) tors = 0 for n 4, hence also H 3 X, Z) tors = 0 for n 4. Remark 1.7. Arguing as in the proof of Proposition 1.2, we see that if X and Y are stably birational smooth, complete varieties, then H 2 X, Z) tors H 2 Y, Z) tors. However, this invariant is not useful for rationality problems. In order to explain this, let us recall that a smooth, projective variety X is rationally connected if any two general points lie in the image of some map f : P 1 X. This is a much better behaved notion than both rationality and unirationality and it is natural to restrict to rationally connected varieties when discussing rationality note that it follows from definition that a unirational variety is automatically rationally connected). However, rationally connected varieties are simply connected see for example [Deb01, Corollary 4.18]). Since H 1 X, Z) is isomorphic to the Abelianization of π 1 X), we conclude that if X is a smooth, projective, rationally connected variety, then H 1 X, Z) = 0, hence H 2 X, Z) tors = 0 by the Universal Coefficient theorem. 2. Lines on quadrics in P 3 In this section we work over an algebraically closed field k, of characteristic 2. Let P = P H 0 P 3, O P 32)) ) P 9 be the projective space parametrizing quadric hypersurfaces in P 3. We denote by G = G2, 4) the Grassmann variety parametrizing lines in P 3 hence G is a 4-dimensional smooth, projective, rational variety) and by I the incidence correspondence in P G. Recall that if p: I P and q : I G are induced by the projections to the two components, then it follows from Proposition 1.1 in Lecture 4 that q is a projective bundle, with fibers isomorphic to P 6. In particular, I is a smooth, projective variety of dimension 10. if we choose coordinates x 0,..., x 3 on P 3, every nonzero f H 0 P 3, O P 32) ) can be written uniquely as 3 f = a i,j x i x j, with a i,j = a j,i for all i, j. i,j=0 The rank of f and of the corresponding quadric defined by f) is the rank of the symmetric matrix a i,j ). This is independent of the choice of coordinates. Moreover, if rankf) = d, then we can find coordinates on P 3 such that f = d 1 i=0 x2 i. Note that a quadric is smooth if and only if it has rank 4.

4 4 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE For 1 i 4, let W i P denote the set of quadrics of rank i. It is clear that each W i is a closed subset of P and W 4 = P. In the following proposition we collect some basic facts about the sets W i. Proposition 2.1. With the above notation, the following hold: i) We have dimw 3 ) = 8, dimw 2 ) = 6, and dimw 1 ) = 3. ii) The closed subset W 2 is irreducible, with degw 2 ) = 10. iii) The closed subset W 3 of P 3 is an irreducible hypersurface of degree 4, which is smooth at the points in W 3 W 2. iv) For every Q W 2 W 1, the tangent cone to W 3 at Q is isomorphic to the hypersurface in A 9 given by x x x 2 3 = 0. Proof. Let V = H 0 P 3, O P 31) ). A quadric of rank 1 is a double plane, hence we have a bijective morphism PV ) W 1, which gives dimw 1 ) = 3. Similarly, a quadric of rank 2 is a union of 2 planes in P 3, hence we have a generically 2-to-1 map ϕ: PV ) PV ) W 2, and thus W 2 is irreducible, with dimw 2 ) = 6. Since ϕ is defined by the line bundle O1, 1) on PV ) PV ) and degϕ) = 2 this is clear if chark) = 0 and we leave it as an exercise in the general case), we have degw 2 ) = 1 2 O1, 1) 6 ) = ) = 10. Note also that since W 3 is the zero-locus of the degree 4 equation deta i,j ) = 0, it follows that dimw 3 ) = 8. We temporarily denote by Z the hypersurface defined scheme-theoretically) by deta i,j ) = 0. We show that Z is smooth at the points in W 3 W 2. Given such a point P, we choose coordinates on P 3 such that P is given by the polynomial x x x 2 2. In this case, it follows that in the chart obtained by making a 0,0 = 1, the equation defining Z at P lies in a 3,3 + m 2 P, where m P is the ideal defining P in the ambient projective space. This implies that Z is smooth at P. In particular, we see that dimz sing ) dimw 2 ) = 6, hence Z is reduced and irreducible. Therefore we do not need to distinguish between Z and W 3. Given a point Q W 2 W 1, we choose coordinates on P 3 such that Q is given by the polynomial x 2 0 +x 2 1. We see that if m Q is the ideal defining Q in the ambient projective space, then in the chart obtained by making a 0,0 = 1, the equation defining Z at Q lies in a 2,2 a 3,3 a 2 2,3) + m 3 Q, which implies the assertion in iv). This completes the proof of the proposition. We now turn to the map p: I P. Note that for every smooth quadric H P 3, we have precisely 2 families of lines contained in H, each of them parametrized by P 1. Indeed, if we choose coordinates on P 3 such that H is the image of the Segre embedding ι: P 1 P 1 P 3, a0, a 1 ), b 0, b 1 ) ) a 0 b 0, a 0 b 1, a 1 b 0, a 1 b 1 ), then the two families of lines are L a 0,a 1 ) = ι {a 0, a 1 )} P 1) = a 1 x 0 = a 0 x 2, a 1 x 1 = a 0 x 3 ) and

5 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE 5 L b 0,b 1 ) = ι P 1 {b 0, b 1 )} ) = b 1 x 0 = b 0 x 1, b 1 x 2 = b 0 x 3 ). For future reference, we note that if L 1 is any member of the first family and L 2 is a member of the second family, then L 1 L 2. Indeed, we have L a 0,a 1 ) L b 0,b 1 ) = {a 0 b 0, a 0 b 1, a 1 b 0, a 1 b 1 )}. We have seen that at least set-theoretically, the fiber of p over each point in W 4 W 3 consists of two irreducible curves, both of them isomorphic to P 1. The first assertion in the next proposition shows that this also holds scheme-theoretically. Proposition 2.2. The morphism p: I P is étale over W 4 W 3. Moreover, there is a prime divisor R on I such that p W 3 ) = 2R. Proof. Consider a point H, L) I such that H is a smooth quadric. We may assume that L = x 0 = x 1 = 0) and we write f = x 0 f 0 + x 1 f 1, for some linear forms f 0 and f 1. If g i = f i L, then it follows from Theorem 1.2 in Lecture 4 that in order to prove the assertion in i), it is enough to show that the map H 0 L, O L 1) ) H 0 L, O L 1) ) H 0 L, O L 2) ), u, v) ug 0 + vg 1 is surjective. However, if this is not surjective, then there is a point Q L such that both g 0 and g 1 vanish at Q. In this case mult Q H) 2, contradicting the fact that H is smooth. We now prove the second assertion. Let D be the effective Cartier divisor on I given by p W 3 ). We compute the scheme-theoretic fiber D L I L of D over some line L G. After a suitable choice of coordinates, we have L = x 0 = x 1 = 0). We see that I L P 6 is the projective space of the quadrics defined by a symmetric matrix a 0,0 a 0,1 a 0,2 a 0,3 a 0,1 a 1,1 a 1,2 a 1,3 a 0,2 a 1,2 0 0 a 0,3 a 1,3 0 0 and D L is defined by a 0,2 a 1,3 a 0,3 a 1,2 ) 2. In particular, we see that D L ) red is an irreducible subset of P 6 of dimension 5. Note that this is true for all L G. First, we deduce using Proposition 1.4 in Lecture 2 that R := D red is a prime divisor in I. Therefore we have D = dr for some d 1. Second, we have two possibilities: either d = 2, or d = 1 and the fibers of R G are everywhere non-reduced. If chark) = 0, then the second possibility contradicts generic smoothness, and we are done. In positive characteristic, we also compute the fiber of D G over the generic point in G. We see, as above, that this is non-reduced, hence D R, and thus d = 2. Remark 2.3. If H is a quadric in W 3 W 2, then a straightforward computation shows that p 1 H) is nonreduced and p 1 H) red P 1. In fact, H is the projective cone over a smooth conic C in a plane, and by intersecting a line on H with this plane, we obtain the isomorphism p 1 H) red C. We also note that the fiber p R ) 1 H) is equal to p 1 H) red. This is clear set-theoretically. We only explain the scheme-theoretic equality in characteristic 0. Note that the morphism R G is smooth at all points H, L) such that H W 3 W 2 : this follows immediately from the description of the fibers in the proof of

6 6 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE Proposition 2.2. This implies that R p 1 P W 2 ) is smooth and by generic smoothess, the map R W 3 is smooth over some point H W 3 W 2. However, P GL 4 acts on both I and G and p is an equivariant morphism. Since the action is transitive on W 3 W 2, we conclude that the morphism R W 3 is smooth over W 3 W 2 ; in particular, the fiber over every quadric in this set is reduced. 3. A brief review of cyclic covers For the Artin-Mumford example, we will need to take a certain double cover. In this section we review what we need about double covers in fact, we discuss more generally cyclic covers). Suppose that L is a line bundle on a variety X and we have a nonzero section σ H 0 X, L m ), for some m 2, not divisible by chark). Note that σ induces a morphism ϕ σ : L m O X. Consider the coherent sheaf of O X -algebras S, which is the quotient of i 0 L i y i by the ideal generated by uy m ϕ σ u), where u is a local section of L m. The corresponding finite morphism is the m-cyclic cover corresponding to σ. f : Y = SpecS) X If we choose an affine open subset U X and a trivialization L U O U, then via the corresponding trivialization L m U O U, the section σ U corresponds to some h O X U), and we have an isomorphism over U: 1) f 1 U) Spec O X U)[y]/y m h). We collect in the next proposition some well-known properties of this construction. Proposition 3.1. Let f : Y X be the m-cyclic cover associated to the nonzero section σ H 0 X, L m ). i) The morphism f is étale of degree m over X D, where D = Zσ) is the effective Cartier divisor defined by σ. ii) There is a Cartier divisor E on Y such that f D) = me and f induces an isomorphism E D. iii) If X is smooth and D is a smooth prime divisor, then Y is smooth. iv) If X is smooth and D has an irreducible component with multiplicity 1, then Y is irreducible and reduced. v) If X is smooth and D is reduced, then Y is normal. Proof. The assertion in i) follows directly from the local description in 1) and the fact that the characteristic of k does not divide m. Moreover, we deduce from 1) that O Y f 1 U) ) is free over O X U), hence h is a non-zero-divisor on O Y f 1 U) ). Since y m = h, it follows that y is a non-zero-divisor, and if E is the Cartier divisor defined on each such U by y, then it is clear that f D) = me and f induces an isomorphism E D. Under the assumptions in iii), we see in particular that E is a smooth divisor. This implies that Y is smooth in a neighborhood of E. On the other hand, since X is smooth

7 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE 7 and f is étale over X D by i), we conclude that Y E is smooth, too, hence Y is smooth. Suppose now that X is smooth and D has a reduced component. If Y is not irreducible, we consider two distinct irreducible components Y 1 and Y 2 of Y. Since f is finite and flat, it follows that both Y 1 and Y 2 surject onto X. On the other hand, we deduce from ii) that E Y 1 Y 2. Note now that iii) implies that Y is smooth over X D sing. This contradicts the fact that f 1 D D sing ), which is nonempty by our assumption on D, is contained in Y 1 Y 2. Therefore Y is irreducible. Since X is smooth, it follows from the description in 1) that Y is Cohen-Macaulay. On the other hand, it is generically smooth by part i), and therefore it is reduced. This gives iv). Finally, suppose that X is smooth and D is reduced. As we have mentioned, in this case Y is Cohen-Macaulay. Moreover, it is smooth in codimension 1, since Y f 1 D sing ) is smooth by iii). Therefore Y is normal. Remark 3.2. Let µ m denote the group of m th roots of 1 in k, so that µ m Z/mZ. With the notation in Proposition 3.1, we have an action of µ m on Y such that X Y/µ m. Indeed, we have an action of µ m on i 0 L m y m such that η µ m maps y to ηy. Since η m = 1 for all such η, it is clear that we get an induced action on f O Y ), which induces an action of µ m on Y. Since f is an affine morphism, in order to check that Y/µ m is isomorphic to X, it is enough to show that the embedding O X f O Y ) identifies O X with the sheaf of µ m -invariant sections of f O Y ) for the basics about quotients of varieties by finite groups, we refer to [Mum08, Section II.7]). This is clear. Example 3.3. A trivial example is that when σ = τ m for some section τ H 0 X, L). In this case, it is clear that Y is isomorphic to the disjoint union of m copies of X, with the map f restricting to the identity on each component. Remark 3.4. In general, the m-cyclic cover depends on the choice of section σ and not just on its zero-locus. However, if X is complete, then the m-cyclic cover only depends on Zσ). Indeed, if σ and σ are two sections of L m that define the same divisor, then there is λ k such that σ = λσ. If α k is such that α m = λ and S and S are the algebras corresponding to σ and σ, respectively, then we have an isomorphism S S that on L i y i is given by multiplication by α i. Remark 3.5. The construction of cyclic covers is functorial. More precisely, suppose that ϕ: X X is a morphism of varieties, σ H 0 X, L m ) is as above and f : Y X is the m-cyclic cover corresponding to σ. If f : Y X is the m-cyclic cover corresponding to ϕ σ) H 0 X, f L) m) which we assume to be nonzero), then we have a Cartesian diagram Y ϕ Y f f X ϕ X. This follows from the fact that if S and S are the algebras corresponding to σ and ϕ σ), then we have a canonical isomorphism ϕ S) S.

8 8 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE Remark 3.6. Suppose that X is a complete variety and f : Y X is the m-cyclic cover corresponding to an effective Cartier divisor D such that O X D) L m. If ϕ: X X is a dominant morphism, with X a complete variety such that ϕ D) = mr for some effective divisor R on X, then there is a morphism g : X Y such that f g = ϕ. Note first that since we deal with complete varieties, it follows from Remark 3.4 that the cyclic covers are determined, up to isomorphism, by the corresponding divisors. We deduce from Remark 3.5 that if f : Y X is the cyclic cover corresponding to ϕ D), then we have a Cartesian diagram Y ϕ Y f X ϕ X. f On the other hand, Example 3.3 shows that since ϕ D) = mr, we can identify Y with m disjoint copies of X. If j : X Y is any section of f, then g = ϕ j satisfies the required condition. Example 3.7. We can apply the previous remark for the morphism p: I P in Proposition 2.2 to conclude that if f : Y P is the double cover that is, the 2-cyclic cover) corresponding to the divisor W 3 on P, then there is a morphism g : I Y such that f g = p. For future reference, we note that for every y Y such that fy) W 2, we have g 1 y) P 1. This is clear if fy) W 3 : indeed, in this case it follows from Proposition 3.1 that f 1 fy) ) is the disjoint union of two points, while p 1 fy) ) is the disjoint union of two P 1 by Proposition 2.2. Suppose now that fy) W 3 W 2. In this case we have g 1 y) p R ) 1 fy) ) and the two schemes have the same reduced structure. Since p R ) 1 fy) ) P 1 by Remark 2.3, we conclude that g 1 y) P The Artin-Mumford example We work over an algebraically closed field k with chark) = 0 and keep the notation in 2. We consider a general 3-dimensional linear system Π P and assume that this has the properties in the following proposition. Proposition 4.1. If Π is a general 3-dimensional linear system in the complete linear system P of quadrics in P 3, then Π satisfies the following properties: i) Π is base-point free. ii) The intersection S = Π W 3 is a quartic surface, which is irreducible and reduced. iii) The intersection Γ = Π W 2 is a reduced set of 10 points and Π W 1 =. iv) The singular locus of S consists precisely of Γ. Moreover, every point P Γ is a node of S that is, the projectivized tangent cone to S at P is a smooth conic in P 2. v) The inverse image I := p 1 Π) is smooth and connected, of dimension 4, and the morphism I G induced by q is birational.

9 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE 9 Proof. Since the complete linear system of quadrics in P 3 is base-point free, any 4 general quadrics have empty intersection. Therefore a general Π is base-point free. Since dimw 1 ) = 3, it is clear that for Π general, we have W 1 Π =. Furthermore, it follows from Bertini s theorem that Π W 2 ) sing W 2 ) sing and Π W 3 ) sing W 3 ) sing. Since W 2 is generically smooth, of dimension 6, it follows that Γ := Π W 2 is a reduced set of points, of cardinality degw 2 ) = 10. Since W 3 is a quartic hypersurface in P 9, with W 3 W 2 smooth, it follows that S := Π W 3 is a quartic surface in Π P 3, with S sing Γ. In particular, it follows that S is irreducible and reduced. Let us show now that for every P Γ, the tangent cone C P S) to S at P is the affine cone over a smooth conic in P 2. Let G = G4, 10) denote the Grassmann variety parametrizing 3-dimensional linear subspaces of P, hence dimg ) = 4 6 = 24. Consider the subset Z of W 2 G consisting of pairs P, Π) such that P Π and the tangent cone to W 3 Π at P is not the cone over a smooth conic. Note that the fiber of the projection Z W 2 over a point P has dimension 17. Indeed, this fiber parametrizes the 3- dimensional vector subspaces W of k 9 with the property that given 3 linear independent linear forms on k 9, their restriction to W is linearly dependent. Equivalently, W is a 3-dimensional vector subspace of a hyperplane defined by a linear combination of the 3 linear forms. This implies that the dimension of this fiber is 2 + dim G3, 8) ) = 17. We thus conclude that dimz) = 23, hence a general element of G does not lie in the image of Z, proving the assertion in iv). Note now that since p: I P is surjective, it follows from the Kleiman-Bertini theorem see [Har77, Theorem III.10.8]) that for general Π, the inverse image p 1 Π) is smooth, of dimension dimi) 6 = 4. The fact that p 1 Π) is connected is a general fact and holds for all Π see [Laz04, Theorem 3.3.3] for the characteristic 0 case and [MNP15, Theorem 1.1] for an argument in arbitrary characteristic). We give an ad-hoc argument g in our case for Π general. Recall that by Example 3.7, we can factor p as I Y f P, where f is the double cover of P corresponding to the divisor W 3. Since g has connected fibers, it follows that it is enough to check that Y := f 1 Π) is connected. On the other hand, it follows from Remark 3.5 that Y is the double cover of Π corresponding to the divisor S. Since S is reduced and irreducible, it follows from Proposition 3.1 that Y is irreducible. Finally, we show that for Π general, the morphism ϕ: I G induced by q is birational. Indeed, suppose that L G is a fixed line in P 3. The fiber q 1 L) P is a 6-dimensional linear subspace. It follows that for Π general, the fiber of ϕ over L, which is Π q 1 L), consists of one reduced point. Therefore there is an open neighborhood U of L over which ϕ has finite fibers. Since both G and I are smooth, this implies that ϕ is flat over U, and since ϕ 1 L) is a reduced point, we conclude that ϕ is birational. From now on, we assume that Π satisfies the properties in the proposition and we keep the same notation. Note that the surface S Π is a quartic symmetroid, that is, there are linear forms l i,j on Π P 3, with 1 i, j 4, and l i,j = l j,i, such that S is defined by the determinant of the symmetric matrix l i,j ). Indeed, suppose that h 1,..., h 4 H 0 P 3, O P 32) ) span the linear subspace corresponding to Π. In this case

10 10 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE we have coordinates λ 1,..., λ 4 on Π such that the quadric corresponding to the point λ 1,..., λ 4 ) is defined by i λ ih i. It follows that if we write h m = i,j am) i,j x ix j, then we may take l i,j = 4 m=1 am) i,j λ m. g We consider the factorization I Y f P of p given in Example 3.7 and the induced surjective morphisms f : Y Π and g : I Y, where Y = f 1 Π). Note that by Remark 3.5, we know that f is the double cover of Π corresponding to the quartic surface S. Since S is reduced and irreducible, it follows from Proposition 3.1 that so is Y. Moreover, since S Γ is smooth, it follows from the same proposition that Y f 1 Γ) is smooth. Lemma 4.2. With the above notation, every P f 1 Γ) is a node of Y, that is, the projectivized tangent cone to Y at P is a smooth quadric in P 3. Proof. It follows from the definition of the double cover that there is an affine open neighborhood U of Q = f P ) and u R = O Π U) defining S such that O f 1 U) ) R[y]/y 2 u). By Proposition 4.1, we know that mult Q S) = 2, and in fact, Q is a node of S. It follows that the tangent cone of Y at P is given by h + y 2 OA 3 A 1 ), where h OA 3 ) defines the tangent cone of S at Q. We thus see that P is a node of Y. We conclude using the lemma and Proposition 4.1 that Y has precisely 10 singular points, all of which are nodes. Let V Y be the blow-up of the 10 nodes. By construction, this is an isomorphism over the smooth locus Y 0 of Y. If E is the exceptional divisor, then E is the disjoint union of 10 components, with each of these isomorphic to the projectivized tangent cone at the corresponding point of Y, hence isomorphic to P 1 P 1. We thus see that E is smooth, hence V is smooth in a neighborhood of E. Since V E is clearly smooth, we conclude that V is smooth The smooth, projective variety V is the Artin-Mumford threefold. Unirationality of V follows from our discussion so far. Proposition 4.3. With the above notation, the variety V is unirational. Proof. Since V and Y are birational, it is enough to see that Y is unirational. On the other hand, Proposition 4.1 implies that we have a birational morphism I G, hence I is rational. We thus deduce the unirationality of Y from the existence of the surjective morphism g : I Y. The following is the main result of this chapter. For simplicity, we assume that the ground field is C but see Remark 4.7 below). The proof will make use of some basic results about Brauer groups, for which we refer to Appendix 2. Recall that a P 1 -fibration is a proper, flat morphism f : X Y, such that f 1 y) P 1 for all closed) points y Y. Note that if X and Y are smooth, the flatness follows from the condition on the fibers. Theorem 4.4. The variety V is not stably rational. Proof. Step 1. Consider the morphism ψ : g 1 Y 0) Y 0 induced by g. We have seen that all its fibers are isomorphic to P 1, and since both Y 0 and g 1 Y 0) are smooth, we conclude that ψ is a P 1 -fibration. We now show that ψ has no rational sections.

11 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE 11 Recall that since f : Y Π is a cyclic 2-cover, we have an action of µ 2 on Y such that Π Y /µ 2 see Remark 3.2). Let σ : Y Y be the automorphism over Π given by the action of 1, hence over Π S, this interchanges the fibers of f. Suppose that ψ has a rational section ϕ defined on some open subset U of Y 0. After possibly replacing U by a smaller subset, we may assume that U lies over Π S and that σu) U. Note that for every y Y, we can write ϕy) = f y), L y ), where L y is a line contained in the quadric f y). Moreover, the line L σy) lies on the same quadric, but on the other family of lines than L y. Therefore L y L σy), and it is clear that the map U P 3, given by y L y L σy) is a morphism. Moreover, this maps y and σy) to the same point in P 3, and since Π Y /µ 2, we conclude that there is a rational map Π P 3 that maps each Q = f y) to L y L ϕy), a point lying on the quadric Q. Since this contradicts the general Lemma 4.5 below, we conclude that in fact ψ has no rational section. Step 2. By applying Proposition 3.7 in Appendix 2, we deduce from Step 1 that ψ defines a nonzero element in BrY 0). We now show that the first Chern class map PicY 0) H 2 Y 0, Z) is surjective: since Y 0 is smooth, Proposition 3.10 in Appendix 2 then implies that BrY 0) H 3 Y 0, Z) tors, and therefore H 3 Y 0, Z) tors 0. Recall that Y 0 is isomorphic to the open subset V 0 = V E of the smooth, projective 3-fold V, where E is a disjoint union of smooth, irreducible divisors. Consider the following commutative diagram PicV ) PicV 0 ) H 2 V, Z) H 2 V 0, Z). We have seen in Proposition 4.3 that V is unirational, hence H 2 V, O V ) = 0 = H 1 V, O V ) by Corollary 3.4 in Lecture 1. We deduce by using GAGA and the exponential sequence that the top horizontal map in the diagram is an isomorphism. In order to finish the proof of this step it is thus enough to show that the map 2) H 2 V, Z) H 2 V 0, Z) is surjective. The long exact sequence in cohomology for the pair V, V 0 ) gives, via the Thom isomorphism see Remark 2.4 in Appendix 1) H 2 V, Z) H 2 V 0, Z) H 1 E, Z). Since E is a disjoint union of varieties isomorphisc to P 1 P 1, and H 1 P 1 P 1, Z) = 0 by the Künneth theorem and the fact that H 1 P 1, Z) = 0, we conclude that H 1 E, Z) = 0. Therefore the map 2) is surjective.

12 12 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE Step 3. We now deduce that H 3 V, Z) tors 0. We can then apply Corollary 1.3 to obtain that V is not stably rational. We have seen in Step 2 that H 3 V 0, Z) tors 0. We consider again the long exact sequence in cohomology for the pair V, V 0 ), that gives H 1 E, Z) H 3 V, Z) H 3 V 0, Z) H 2 E, Z). Recall that H 1 E, Z) = 0 and using again the description of the components of E and the Künneth theorem, we get H 2 E, Z) H 2 P 1 P 1, Z) 10 Z 20. In particular, we see that H 2 E, Z) tors = 0, and we thus conclude from the above exact sequence that H 3 V, Z) tors H 3 V 0, Z) tors 0. This completes the proof of the theorem. Lemma 4.5. Let V be a base-point free linear system of hypersurfaces of degree d 2 in P n. If H V P n is the universal hypersurface in V, then the map p: H V induced by the first projection has no rational section. Proof. We identify throughout homology and cohomology via Poincaré duality. It is clear that there is a linear subsystem of V that is base-point free and of dimension n. Since it is enough to prove the assertion in the lemma for this subsystem, we may and will assume that dim V = n. The map p has a rational section if and only if there is a subvariety W of H that maps birationally onto V given the section, we take W to be the closure of its image). We will show that the existence of such W leads to a contradiction. Let W i H j V P n be the inclusions. Consider the following classes α = c 1 O1, 0) ) and β = c 1 O0, 1) ) in H 2 V P n, Z). It follows from the description of the cohomology of P n see Proposition 4.1 in Appendix 1) and the Künneth formula that H V P n, Z) has a Z-basis given by α k β l, with 0 k, l n. Note that if π : V P n V is the projection, then π α k β l ) = α k if l = n and π α k β l ) = 0, otherwise. On the other hand, H is a divisor in V P n defined by a section in O1, d). Moreover, since V is base-point free, we see that H is a subbundle of V P n over P n. The formula for the cohomology of a vector bundle see Corollary 4.2 in Appendix 1) implies that a basis for the cohomology of H is given by j α k ) j β l ), for 0 k n 1 and 0 l n. In particular, we may write We deduce that n 1 i µ W ) = j δ) with δ = c k α k β n 1 k H 2n 2 V P n, Z). k=0 p µ W ) = π j j δ) ) = π δ c 1 O1, d)) ) = π δ α + dβ) ) = dc0 µ V. However, if p induces a birational morphism W V, then p µ W ) = µ V, contradicting the fact that d 2.

13 LECTURE 6: THE ARTIN-MUMFORD EXAMPLE 13 Remark 4.6. While the proof of the above lemma made use of singular cohomology, one can give a similar argument using Chow groups. Therefore the assertion holds true over any algebraically closed field. Remark 4.7. While we assumed in the proof of Theorem 4.4 that we work over C, it is standard to deduce from this case that the assertion works over any algebraically closed field k, with chark) = 0. Indeed, if V is stably rational, then we can find an algebraically closed subfield k 1 of k, with trdeg k1 k <, and an Artin-Mumford 3-fold V 1 over k 1 such that V 1 is stably rational and V is obtained from V 1 by base-change. We can find an embedding k 1 C and the Artin-Mumford 3-fold obtained by base-changing V 1 to C is again stably rational, contradicting the assertion over C. References [AM72] M. Artin and D. Mumford, Some elementary examples of unirational varieties which are not rational, Proc. London Math. Soc. 3) ), [Bea15] A. Beauville, The Lüroth problem, preprint 2015, arxiv: [Deb01] O. Debarre, Higher-dimensional algebraic geometry, Universitext, Springer-Verlag, New York, [Har77] R. Hartshorne, Algebraic geometry. Graduate Texts in Mathematics, No. 52, Springer-Verlag, New York-Heidelberg, [Laz04] R. Lazarsfeld, Positivity in algebraic geometry, I, Ergebnisse der Mathematik und ihrer Grenzgebiete. 3. Folge, Vol. 48, Springer-Verlag, Berlin, [MNP15] D. Martinelli, J. C. Naranjo, and G. P. Pirola, Connectedness Bertini theorem via numerical equivalence, preprint 2015, arxiv: [Mum08] D. Mumford, Abelian varieties. With appendices by C. P. Ramanujam and Yuri Manin, corrected reprint of the second 1974) edition, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Studies in Mathematics, 5, published for the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Bombay; by Hindustan Book Agency, New Delhi, [W lo03] J. W lodarczyk, Toroidal varieties and the weak factorization theorem, Invent. Math ),

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