# Abstract Algebra: Supplementary Lecture Notes

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1 Abstract Algebra: Supplementary Lecture Notes JOHN A. BEACHY Northern Illinois University 1995 Revised, 1999, 2006

2 ii To accompany Abstract Algebra, Third Edition by John A. Beachy and William D. Blair ISBN , Copyright 2006 Waveland Press, Inc IL Route 83, Suite 101 Long Grove, Illinois / Copyright 2006, 1999, 1995 by John A. Beachy Permission is granted to copy this document in electronic form, or to print it for personal use, under these conditions: it must be reproduced in whole; it must not be modified in any way; it must not be used as part of another publication. Formatted January 12, 2007, at which time the original was available at: beachy/abstract_algebra/

3 Contents PREFACE v 7 STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (cont d) Nilpotent Groups Semidirect Products Classification of Groups of Small Order BIBLIOGRAPHY 502 INDEX 503 iii

4 iv CONTENTS

5 PREFACE These notes are provided as a supplement to the book Abstract Algebra, Third Edition, by John A. Beachy and William D. Blair, Waveland Press, The notes are intended for the use of graduate students who are studying from our text and need to cover additional topics. John A. Beachy October, 2006 v

6 vi PREFACE

7 Chapter 7 STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (cont d) 7.8 Nilpotent Groups We now define and study a class of solvable groups that includes all finite abelian groups and all finite p-groups. This class has some rather interesting properties Definition. For a group G we define the ascending central series Z 1 (G) Z 2 (G) of G as follows: Z 1 (G) is the center Z(G) of G; Z 2 (G) is the unique subgroup of G with Z 1 (G) Z 2 (G) and Z 2 (G)/Z 1 (G) = Z(G/Z 1 (G)). We define Z i (G) inductively, so that Z i (G)/Z i 1 (G) = Z(G/Z i 1 (G)). The group G is called nilpotent if there exists a positive integer n with Z n (G) = G. We first note that any abelian group is nilpotent. We next note that any nilpotent group is solvable, since the factor groups Z i+1 (G)/Z i (G) are abelian. We also note that these classes are distinct. The proof of Theorem shows that any finite p-group is nilpotent, so the group of quaternion units provides an example of a group that is nilpotent but not abelian. The symmetric group S 3 is solvable, but it is not nilpotent since its center is trivial. We will show that the converse of Lagrange s theorem holds for nilpotent groups. Recall that the standard counterexample to the converse of Lagrange s theorem is the alternating group A 4, which has 12 elements but no subgroup of order 6. We 485

8 486 CHAPTER 7. STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (CONT D) note that A 4 is another example of a solvable group that is not nilpotent. It follows from Theorem 7.4.1, the first Sylow theorem, that any finite p-group has subgroups of all possible orders. This result can be easily extended to any group that is a direct product of p-groups. Thus the converse of Lagrange s theorem holds for any finite abelian group, and this argument will also show (see Corollary 7.8.5) that it holds for any finite nilpotent group. We first prove that any finite direct product of nilpotent groups is nilpotent Proposition. If G 1, G 2,..., G n are nilpotent groups, then so is G = G 1 G 2 G n. Proof. It is immediate that an element (a 1, a 2,..., a n ) belongs to the center Z(G) of G if and only if each component a i belongs to Z(G i ). Thus factoring out Z(G) yields G/Z(G) = (G 1 /Z(G 1 )) (G n /Z(G n )). Using the description of the center of a direct product of groups, we see that Z 2 (G) = Z 2 (G 1 ) Z 2 (G n ), and this argument can be continued inductively. If m is the maximum of the lengths of the ascending central series for the factors G i, then it is clear that the ascending central series for G will terminate at G after at most m terms. The following theorem gives our primary characterization of nilpotent groups. We first need a lemma about the normalizer of a Sylow subgroup Lemma. If P is a Sylow p-subgroup of a finite group G, then the normalizer N(P) is equal to its own normalizer in G. Proof. Since P is normal in N(P), it is the unique Sylow p-subgroup of N(P). If g belongs to the normalizer of N(P), then gn(p)g 1 N(P), so g Pg 1 N(P), which implies that g Pg 1 = P. Thus g N(P) Theorem. The following conditions are equivalent for any finite group G. (1) G is nilpotent; (2) no proper subgroup H of G is equal to its normalizer N(H); (3) every Sylow subgroup of G is normal; (4) G is a direct product of its Sylow subgroups.

9 7.8. NILPOTENT GROUPS 487 Proof. (1) implies (2): Assume that G is nilpotent and H is a proper subgroup of G. With the notation Z 0 (G) = {e}, let n be the largest index such that Z n (G) H. Then there exists a Z n+1 (G) with a H. For any h H, the cosets az n (G) and h Z n (G) commute in G/Z n (G), so aha 1 h 1 Z n (G) H, which shows that aha 1 H. Thus a N(H) H, as required. (2) implies (3): Let P be a Sylow p-subgroup of G. By Lemma 7.8.3, the normalizer N(P) is equal to its own normalizer in G, so by assumption we must have N(P) = G. This implies the P is normal in G. (3) implies (4): Let P 1, P 2,..., P n be the Sylow subgroups of G, corresponding to prime divisors p 1, p 2,..., p n of G. We can show inductively that P 1 P i = P 1 P i for i = 2,..., n. This follows immediately from the observation that (P 1 P i ) P i+1 = {e} because any element in P i+1 has an order which is a power of p i+1, whereas the order of an element in P 1 P i is p k 1 1 pk i i, for some integers k 1,..., k n. (4) implies (3): This follows immediately from Proposition and the fact that any p-group is nilpotent (see Theorem 7.6.3) Corollary. Let G be a finite nilpotent group of order n. If m is any divisor of n, then G has a subgroup of order m. Proof. Let m = p α 1 1 pα k k be the prime factorization of m. For each prime power p α i i, the corresponding Sylow p i -subgroup of G has a subgroup of order p α i i. The product of these subgroups has order m, since G is a direct product of its Sylow subgroups Lemma (Frattini s Argument). Let G be a finite group, and let H be a normal subgroup of G. If P is any Sylow subgroup of H, then G = H N(P), and [G : H] is a divisor of N(P). Proof. Since H is normal in G, it follows that the product H N(P) is a subgroup of G. If g G, then g Pg 1 H since H is normal, and thus g Pg 1 is also a Sylow subgroup of H. The second Sylow theorem (Theorem 7.7.4) implies that P and g Pg 1 are conjugate in H, so there exists h H with h(g Pg 1 )h 1 = P. Thus hg N(P), and so g H N(P), which shows that G = H N(P). It follows from the first isomorphism theorem (Theorem 7.1.1) that G/H = N(P)/(N(P) H), and so G/H is a divisor of N(P) Proposition. A finite group is nilpotent if and only if every maximal subgroup is normal.

10 488 CHAPTER 7. STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (CONT D) Proof. Assume that G is nilpotent, and H is a maximal subgroup of G. Then H is a proper subset of N(H) by Theorem and so N(H) must equal G, showing that H is normal. Conversely, suppose that every maximal subgroup of G is normal, let P be any Sylow subgroup of G, and assume that P is not normal. Then N(P) is a proper subgroup of G, so it is contained in a maximal subgroup H, which is normal by assumption. Since P is a Sylow subgroup of G, it is a Sylow subgroup of H, so the conditions of Lemma hold, and G = H N(P). This is a contradiction, since N(P) H. EXERCISES: SECTION Show that the group G is nilpotent if G/Z(G) is nilpotent. 2. Show that each term Z i (G) in the ascending central series of a group G is a characteristic subgroup of G. 3. Show that any subgroup of a finite nilpotent group is nilpotent. 4. (a) Prove that D n is solvable for all n. (b) Find necessary and sufficient conditions on n such that D n is nilpotent. 5. Use Theorem to prove that any factor group of a finite nilpotent group is again nilpotent. 7.9 Semidirect Products The direct product of two groups does not allow for much complexity in the way in which the groups are put together. For example, the direct product of two abelian groups is again abelian. We now give a more general construction that includes some very useful and interesting examples. We recall that a group G is isomorphic to N K, for subgroups N, K, provided (i) N and K are normal in G; (ii) N K = {e}; and (iii) N K = G. (See Theorem ) Definition. Let G be a group with subgroups N and K such that (i) N is normal in G; (ii) N K = {e}; and (iii) N K = G. Then G is called the semidirect product of N and K.

11 7.9. SEMIDIRECT PRODUCTS 489 Example (S 3 is a semidirect product). Let S 3 = {e, a, a 2, b, ab, a 2 b} be the symmetric group on three elements, and let N = {e, a, a 2 } and K = {e, b}. Then the subgroup N is normal, and it is clear that N K = {e} and N K = G. Thus S 3 is the semidirect product of N and K. The difference in complexity of direct products and semidirect products can be illustrated by the following examples. Example Let F be a field, let G 1 be a subgroup of GL n (F), and let G 2 be a subgroup of GL m (F). The subset of GL n+m (F) given by {[ A1 0 0 A 2 ] A 1 G 1, A 2 G 2 } is easily seen to be isomorphic to G 1 G 2. The above example suggests that since a matrix construction can be given for certain direct products, we might be able to construct semidirect products by considering other sets of matrices. Example Let F be a field, and let G be the subgroup of GL 2 (F) defined by {[ ] 1 0 G = x, a F, a = 0}. x a For the product of two elements, with x 1, a 1, x 2, a 2 F, we have [ ] [ ] [ ] =. x 1 a 1 x 2 a 2 x 1 + a 1 x 2 a 1 a 2 The determinant defines a group homomorphism [ ] δ : G F, where ker(δ) 1 0 is the set of matrices in G of the form. Let N be the normal subgroup x 1 ker(δ), and let K be the set of all matrices of the form that N K is the identity matrix, and the computation [ ] [ ] [ ] = x 1 0 a x a [ a ]. It is clear

12 490 CHAPTER 7. STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (CONT D) shows that N K = G Thus G is the semidirect product of N and K. It is easy to check that N = F and K = F. Finally, we note that if 1 = 1 in F, then for the elements [ ] [ ] A = and B = we have B A = A 1 B = AB, showing that G is not abelian. Example (Construction of H p )). Let p be a prime number. We next consider the holomorph of Z p, which we will denote by H p. It is defined as follows. (Recall that Z p is group of invertible elements in Z p, and has order p 1.) {[ ] } 1 0 H p = a a 21 Z p, a 22 Z p 22 a 21 Thus H p is a subgroup of GL 2 (Z p ), with subgroups {[ ] } 1 0 N = a a 21 a 21 Z p, a 22 = 1 22 and {[ ] } 1 0 K = a a 21 = 0, a 22 Z p. 22 a 21 It is clear that N K = {e}, N K = H p, and it can easily be checked that N is a normal subgroup isomorphic to Z p, and K is isomorphic to Z p. Thus H p is a semidirect product of subgroups isomorphic to Z p and Z p, respectively. Example The matrix construction of semidirect products can be extended to larger matrices, in block form. Let F be a field, let G be a subgroup of GL n (F). and let X be a subspace of the n-dimensional vector space F n such that Ax X for all vectors x X and [ matrices ] A G. Then the set of all (n +1) (n +1) 1 0 matrices of the form such that x X and A G defines a group. x A [ For example, ] we [ could] let G be the subgroup of GL 2 (Z 2 ) consisting of and, and we could let X be the set of vectors {[ ] [ ] [ ] [ ]} ,,,

13 7.9. SEMIDIRECT PRODUCTS 491 Example (D n is a semidirect product). Consider the dihedral group D n, described by generators a of order n and b of order 2, with the relation ba = a 1 b. Then a is a normal subgroup, a b = {e}, and a b = D n. Thus the dihedral group is a semidirect product of cyclic subgroups of order n and 2, respectively. We have said that a group G is a semidirect product of its subgroups N and K if (i) N is normal; (ii) N K = {e}; and (iii) N K = G. This describes an internal semidirect product. We now use the automorphism group to give a general definition of an external semidirect product Definition. Let G be a multiplicative group, and let X be an abelian group, denoted additively. Let µ : G Aut(X) be a group homomorphism. The semidirect product of X and G relative to µ is defined to be X µ G = {(x, a) x X, a G} with the operation (x 1, a 1 )(x 2, a 2 ) = (x 1 + µ(a 1 )[x 2 ], a 1 a 2 ), for x 1, x 2 X and a 1, a 2 G. For any multiplicative group G and any additive group X there is always the trivial group homomorphism µ : G Aut(X) which maps each element of G to the identity mapping in Aut(X). Using this homomorphism, the semidirect product X µ G reduces to the direct product X G Proposition. Let G be a multiplicative group, let X be an additive group, and let µ : G Aut(X) be a group homomorphism. (a) The semidirect product X µ G is a group. (b) The set {(x, a) X µ G x = 0} is a subgroup of X µ G that is isomorphic to G. (c) The set N = {(x, a) X µ G a = e} is a normal subgroup of X µ G that is isomorphic to X, and (X µ G)/N is isomorphic to G. Proof. (a) The associative law holds since ((x 1, a 1 )(x 2, a 2 ))(x 3, a 3 ) = (x 1 + µ(a 1 )[x 2 ], a 1 a 2 )(x 3, a 3 ) = ((x 1 + µ(a 1 )[x 2 ]) + µ(a 1 a 2 )[x 3 ], (a 1 a 2 )a 3 )

14 492 CHAPTER 7. STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (CONT D) and (x 1, a 1 )((x 2, a 2 )(x 3, a 3 )) = (x 1, a 1 )(x 2 + µ(a 2 )[x 3 ], a 2 a 3 ) and these elements are equal because = (x 1 + µ(a 1 )[x 2 + µ(a 2 )[x 3 ]], a 1 (a 2 a 3 )) µ(a 1 )[x 2 ] + µ(a 1 a 2 )[x 3 ] = µ(a 1 )[x 2 ] + µ(a 1 )µ(a 2 )[x 3 ] = µ(a 1 )[x 2 + µ(a 2 )[x 3 ]]. The element (0, e) is an identity, and the inverse of (x, a) is (µ(a) 1 [ x], a 1 ), as shown by the following computation. (x, a)(µ(a) 1 [ x], a 1 ) = (x + µ(a)µ(a) 1 [ x], aa 1 ) = (0, e) (µ(a) 1 [ x], a 1 )(x, a) = (µ(a) 1 [ x] + µ(a) 1 [x], a 1 a) = (0, e) (b) Define φ : G X µ G by φ(a) = (0, a), for all a G. It is clear that φ is a one-to-one homomorphism and that the image φ(g) is the required subgroup. (c) It is clear that X is isomorphic to N. Define π : X µ G G by π(x, a) = a, for all (x, a) X µ G. The definition of multiplication in X µ G shows that π is a homomorphism. It is onto, and ker(π) = N. The fundamental homomorphism theorem shows that (X µ G)/N = G. Example (H n ). Let X be the cyclic group Z n, with n 2. Example shows that Aut(X) = Z n, and if µ : Z n Aut(X) is the isomorphism defined in Example 7.1.6, we have µ(a)[m] = am, for all a Z n and all m Z n. Thus Z n µ Z n has the multiplication (m 1, a 1 )(m 2, a 2 ) = (m 1 + a 1 m 2, a 1 a 2 ). If n is prime, this gives us the holomorph H p of Z p. We can now give a more general definition. We say that Z n µ Z n holomorph of Z n, denoted by H n. is the Example Let X be the cyclic group Z n, with n 2. If θ : Z n Aut(X) maps each element of Z n to the identity automorphism, then Z n θ Z n = Z n Z n. This illustrates the strong dependence of X θ G on the homomorphism θ, since H n is not abelian and hence cannot be isomorphic to Z n Z n.

15 7.9. SEMIDIRECT PRODUCTS 493 Example (D n is a semidirect product). We have already shown in Example that D n is an internal semidirect product, using the standard generators and relations. We can now give an alternate proof that the dihedral group is a semidirect product. Let {[ ] } 1 0 G = a a 21 Z n, a 22 = ±1 Z n. 22 a 21 The set we have defined is a subgroup of the holomorph H n of Z n. If n > 2, then G = 2n, and for the elements [ ] 1 0 A = and B = 1 1 [ it can be checked that A has order n, B has order 2, and B A = A 1 B. Thus G is isomorphic to D n, and we have given an alternate construction of D n, as an external semidirect product. ] Let V be a vector space over the field F. Among other properties that must hold for scalar multiplication, we have (ab)v = a(bv), 1v = v, and a(v+w) = av+aw, for all a, b F and all v, w V. Thus if we let G be the multiplicative group F of nonzero elements of a field F, then scalar multiplication defines an action of G on V. The formula a(v + w) = av + aw provides an additional condition that is very useful. Let V be an n-dimensional vector space over the field F, and let G be any subgroup of the general linear group GL n (F) of all invertible n n matrices over F. The standard multiplication of (column) vectors by matrices defines a group action of G on V, since for any matrices A, B G and any vector v V, we have (AB)v = A(Bv) and I n v = v. The distributive law A(v + w) = Av + Aw, for all A G and all v, w V, gives us an additional property. The previous example suggests a new definition Definition. Let G be a group and let X be an abelian group. If G acts on X and a(x + y) = ax + ay, for all a G and x, y X, then we say that G acts linearly on X. The point of view of the next proposition will be useful in giving some more interesting examples. It extends the result of Proposition 7.3.2, which states that any group homomorphism G Sym(S) defines an action of G on the set S, and conversely, that every action of G on S arises in this way.

16 494 CHAPTER 7. STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (CONT D) Proposition. Let G be a group and let X be an abelian group. Then any group homomorphism from G into the group Aut(X) of all automorphisms of X defines a linear action of G on X. Conversely, every linear action of G on X arises in this way. Proof. If X is an additive group, and φ : G Aut(X), then for any a G the function λ a = φ(a) must be a group homomorphism, so λ a (x + y) = λ a (x)+λ a (y), for all x, y X. Thus a(x + y) = ax + ay. Conversely, assume that G acts linearly on S, and a G. Then it is clear that λ a defined by λ a (x) = ax for x S must be a group homomorphism. Thus φ defined by φ(a) = λ a actually maps G to Aut(S). Let G be any group, and let X be an abelian group. For any homomorphism µ : G Aut(X) we defined the semidirect product X µ G. We now know that such homomorphisms correspond to linear actions of G on X. If we have any such linear action, we can define the multiplication in X µ G as follows: (x 1, a 1 )(x 2, a 2 ) = (x 1 + a 1 x 2, a 1 a 2 ), for all x 1, x 2 X and a 1, a 2 G. Thus the concept of a linear action can be used to simplify the definition of the semidirect product. We now give another characterization of semidirect products Proposition. Let G be a multiplicative group with a normal subgroup N, and assume that N is abelian. Let π : G G/N be the natural projection. The following conditions are equivalent: (1) There is a subgroup K of G such that N K = {e} and N K = G; (2) There is a homomorphism ɛ : G/N G such that πɛ = 1 G/N ; (3) There is a homomorphism µ : G/N Aut(N) such that N µ (G/N) = G. Proof. (1) implies (2): Let µ : K G/N be the restriction of π to K. Then ker(µ) = ker(π) K = N K = {e}, and µ is onto since if g G, then G = N K implies g = ab for some a N, b K, and so g Nb, showing that Ng = µ(b). If we let ɛ = µ 1, then πɛ = µµ 1 is the identity function on G/N. (2) implies (3): To simplify the notation, let G/N = H. Define µ : H Aut(X) as follows. For a H, define µ(a) by letting µ(a)[x] = ɛ(a)xɛ(a) 1, for all x N. We note that µ(a)[x] N since N is a normal subgroup. We first show

17 7.9. SEMIDIRECT PRODUCTS 495 that µ(a) is a group homomorphism, for all a H. We have µ(a)[xy] = ɛ(a)xyɛ(a) 1 = ɛ(a)xɛ(a) 1 ɛ(a)yɛ(a) 1 = µ(a)[x]µ(a)[y], for all x, y N. We next show that µ is a group homomorphism. For all a, b H and all x N, we have µ(ab)[x] = ɛ(ab)xɛ(ab) 1 = ɛ(a)ɛ(b)xɛ(b) 1 ɛ(a) 1 = µ(a)[µ(b)[x]] = µ(a)µ(b)[x]. Since µ(e)[x] = ɛ(e)xɛ(e) 1 = x for all x N, the previous computation shows that µ(a 1 ) is the inverse of µ(a), verifying that µ(a) is an automorphism for all a H. Using µ, we construct N µ H, and then define φ : N µ H G by φ(x, a) = xɛ(a), for all (x, a) N µ H. Then φ is one-to-one since φ((x, a)) = e implies ɛ(a) N, and so πɛ(a) = e, whence a = e and therefore x = e. Given g G, let a = π(g) and x = gɛπ(g 1 ). Then π(x) = π(g)πɛπ(g 1 ) = π(g)π(g 1 ) = e, and so x N. Thus φ is onto, since φ((x, a)) = xɛ(a) = gɛπ(g 1 )ɛπ(g) = g. Finally, we must show that φ is a homomorphism. For (x 1, a 1 ), (x 2, a 2 ) N µ H we have φ((x 1, a 1 )(x 2, a 2 )) = φ((x 1 ɛ(a 1 )x 2 ɛ(a 1 ) 1, a 1 a 2 )) = (x 1 ɛ(a 1 )x 2 ɛ(a 1 ) 1 )ɛ(a 1 a 2 ) = x 1 ɛ(a 1 )x 2 ɛ(a 2 ) = φ((x 1, a 1 ))φ((x 2, a 2 )). (3) implies (1): If G = N µ (G/N), then the subgroups {(x, e)} = N and {(e, a)} = G/N have the required properties. EXERCISES: SECTION Let C 2 be the subgroup {±1} of Z n, and let C 2 act on Z n via the ordinary multiplication µ of congruence classes. Prove that Z n µ C 2 is isomorphic to D n.

18 496 CHAPTER 7. STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (CONT D) 2. Let G be the subgroup of GL 2 (Q) generated by the matrices [ ] [ ] and Show that G is a group of order 8 that is isomorphic to D Let G be the subgroup of GL 3 (Z 2 ) generated by the matrices , 1 1 0, (a) Show that G is a group of order 8 that is isomorphic to D 4. (b) Define an action µ of Z 2 on Z 2 Z 2 by 0(x, y) = (x, y) and 1(x, y) = (y, x). Show that G is isomorphic to (Z 2 Z 2 ) µ Z Show that the quaternion group cannot be written as a semidirect product of two proper subgroups. 5. Prove that S n is isomorphic to a semidirect product A n Z Show that if n > 2, then Z n Z n is solvable but not nilpotent. 7. Let p be a prime, and let G be the subgroup of GL 3 (Z p ) consisting of all matrices of the form a 1 0. b c 1. Show that G is isomorphic to a semidirect product of Z p Z p and Z p Classification of Groups of Small Order In this section we study finite groups of a manageable size. Our first goal is to classify all groups of order less than 16 (at which point the classification becomes more difficult). Of course, any group of prime order is cyclic, and simple abelian. A group of order 4 is either cyclic, or else each nontrivial element has order 2, which characterizes the Klein four-group. There is only one possible pattern for this multiplication table, but there is no guarantee that the associative law holds, and so it is necessary to give a model such as Z 2 Z 2 or Z Proposition. Any nonabelian group of order 6 is isomorphic to S 3. Proof. This follows immediately from Proposition

19 7.10. CLASSIFICATION OF GROUPS OF SMALL ORDER Proposition. Any nonabelian group of order 8 is isomorphic either to D 4 or to the quaternion group Q 8. Proof. If G had an element of order 8, then G would be cyclic, and hence abelian. If each element of G had order 1 or 2, then we would have x 2 = e for all x G, so (ab) 2 = a 2 b 2 for all a, b G, and G would be abelian. Thus G must contain at least one element of order 4. Let a be an element of order 4, and let N = a. Since N has index 2, there are precisely 2 cosets, given by N and bn, for any element b N. Thus there exists an element b such that G = N bn. For the elements given in the previous part, either b 2 = e or b 2 = a 2. To show this, since N is normal, consider G/N. We have (bn) 2 = N, and so b 2 N. Since b 4 = e (there are no elements of order 8) we have (b 2 ) 2 = e. In N the only elements that satisfy x 2 = e are e and a 2, so either b 2 = e or b 2 = a 2. We next show that bab 1 has order 4 and must be equal to a 3. We have (bab 1 ) 4 = ba 4 b 1 = bb 1 = e. If (bab 1 ) 2 = e, then ba 2 b 1 = e and so a 2 = e, a contradiction to the choice of a. Hence o(bab 1 ) = 4. If bab 1 = a, then ab = ba and we have G = N b and so G would be abelian. Thus bab 1 = a 3. We have shown that G contains elements a, b such that a 4 = e, bab 1 = a 3, and b 2 = e or b 2 = a 2. If a 4 = e, b 2 = e, and bab 1 = a 3, then G is isomorphic to the dihedral group D 4. If a 4 = e, b 2 = a 2, and bab 1 = a 3, then G is isomorphic to the quaternion group Q 8. We can now determine (up to isomorphism) almost all groups of order less than 16. A group of order 9 must be abelian by Corollary 7.2.9, and then its structure is determined by Theorem Proposition determines the possible groups of order 10 and 14. determines the possible groups of order 10 and 14. Proposition implies that a group of order 15 is cyclic. The remaining problem is to classify the groups of order Proposition. Let G be a finite group. (a) Let N be a normal subgroup of G. If there exists a subgroup H such that H N = {e} and H = [G : N], then G = N H. (b) Let G be a group with G = p n q m, for primes p, q. If G has a unique Sylow p-subgroup P, and Q is any Sylow q-subgroup of G, then G = P Q. Furthermore, if Q is any other Sylow q-subgroup, then P Q is isomorphic to P Q. (c) Let G be a group with G = p 2 q, for primes p, q. Then G is isomorphic to a semidirect product of its Sylow subgroups.

20 498 CHAPTER 7. STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (CONT D) Proof. (a) The natural inclusion followed by projection defines a homomorphism H G G/N with kernel H N. Since H N = {e} and H = [G : N], this mapping is an isomorphism, and thus each left coset of G/N has the form hn for some h H. For any g G we have g hn for some h H, and so G = H N. (b) The first statement follows from the part (a), since Q = G / P. If Q is any other Sylow q-subgroup, then Q = gqg 1 for some g G, since Q is conjugate to Q. Recall that the action of Q on P is given by a x = axa 1, for all a Q and all x P. Define : P Q P Q by (x, a) = (gxg 1, gag 1 ), for all x P, a Q. The mapping is well-defined since P is normal and Q = gqg 1. For x 1, x 2 P and a 1, a 2 Q we have ((x 1, a 1 )) ((x 2, a 2 )) = (gx 1 g 1, ga 1 g 1 )(gx 2 g 1, ga 2 g 1 ) = (gx 1 g 1 ga 1 g 1 gx 2 g 1 (ga 1 g 1 ) 1, ga 1 g 1 ga 2 g 1 ) = (gx 1 g 1 ga 1 g 1 gx 2 g 1 ga 1 1 g 1, ga 1 g 1 ga 2 g 1 ) = (gx 1 a 1 x 2 a 1 1 g 1, ga 1 a 2 g 1 ) = ((x 1 a 1 x 2 a 1 1, a 1a 2 )) = ((x 1, a 1 )(x 2, a 2 )). Thus is a homomorphism. (c) If p > q, then q 1 (mod p), so there must be only one Sylow p-subgroup, which is therefore normal. If p < q, then p 1 (mod q), and so the number of Sylow q-subgroups must be 1 or p 2. In the first case, the Sylow q-subgroup is normal. If there are p 2 Sylow q-subgroups, then there must be p 2 (q 1) distinct elements of order q, so there can be at most one Sylow p-subgroup Lemma. Let G, X be groups, let α, β : G Aut(X), and let µ, η be the corresponding linear actions of G on X. Then X µ G = X η G if there exists φ Aut(G) such that β = αφ. Proof. Assume that φ Aut(G) with β = αφ. For any a G we have β(a) = α(φ(a)), and so for any x X we must have η(a, x) = µ(φ(a), x). Define : X η G X µ G by (x, a) = (x, φ(a)) for all x X and a G. Since φ is an automorphism, it is clear that is one-to-one and onto. For x 1, x 2 X and a 1, a 2 G, we have ((x 1, a 1 )) ((x 2, a 2 )) = (x 1, φ(a 1 ))(x 2, φ(a 2 )) Thus X η G = X µ G. = (x 1 µ(φ(a 1 ), x 2 ), φ(a 1 )φ(a 2 )) = (x 1 η(a 1, x 2 ), φ(a 1 a 2 )) = ((x 1 η(a 1, x 2 ), a 1 a 2 )) = ((x 1, a 1 )(x 2, a 2 )).

21 7.10. CLASSIFICATION OF GROUPS OF SMALL ORDER Proposition. Any nonabelian group of order 12 is isomorphic to A 4, D 6, or Z 3 Z 4. Proof. Let G be a group of order 12. The Sylow 2-subgroup must be isomorphic to Z 4 or Z 2 Z 2, while the Sylow 3-subgroup must be isomorphic to Z 3. Thus we must find all possible semidirect products of the four combinations. Case (i): Z 4 Z 3 Since Aut(Z 4 ) = Z 4 = Z 2, there are no nontrivial homomorphisms from Z 3 into Aut(Z 4 ). Therefore this case reduces to Z 4 Z 3 = Z12. Case (ii): (Z 2 Z 2 ) Z 3 Since Aut(Z 2 Z 2 ) = S 3 and S 3 has a unique subgroup of order 3, there two possible nontrivial homomorphisms from Z 3 into S 3, but they define isomorphic groups by Proposition The group A 4 has a unique Sylow 2-subgroup isomorphic to Z 2 Z 2, and so we must have (Z 2 Z 2 ) Z 3 = A4. Case (iii): Z 3 (Z 2 Z 2 ) Since Aut(Z 3 ) = Z 3 = Z 2, there are 3 nontrivial homomorphisms from Z 2 Z 2 into Aut(Z 3 ), but they define isomorphic semidirect products, by Proposition It can be shown that Z 3 (Z 2 Z 2 ) = D 6. Case (iv): Z 3 Z 4 There is only one nontrivial homomorphism from Z 4 into Aut(Z 3 ), in which µ(1) corresponds to multiplication by 2. It is left as an exercise to show that this group is isomorphic to the one called T by Hungerford. The following table summarizes the information that we have gathered. Order Groups Order Groups 2 Z 2 9 Z 9, Z 3 Z 3 3 Z 3 10 Z 10, D 5 4 Z 4, Z 2 Z 2 11 Z 11 5 Z 5 12 Z 12, Z 6 Z 2 6 Z 6, S 3 A 4, D 6, Z 3 Z 4 7 Z 7 13 Z 13 8 Z 8, Z 4 Z 2, Z 2 Z 2 Z 2 14 Z 14, D 7 D 4, Q 8 15 Z 15 We now turn our attention to another question. The list of simple nonabelian groups that we know contains A n, for n > 4, (by Theorem 7.7.4), and PSL 2 (F),

22 500 CHAPTER 7. STRUCTURE OF GROUPS (CONT D) where F is a finite field with F > 3 (by Theorem 7.7.9). The smallest of these groups are A 5 and P SL 2 (Z 5 ), each having 60 elements. Exercise shows that in fact they are isomorphic. It is not difficult to show that A 5 is the smallest nonabelian simple group. If G is a group of order n, then G is abelian if n is prime, and has a nontrivial center (which is normal) if n is a prime power. If n = p 2 q, where p, q are distinct primes, then we have shown that G is a semidirect product of its Sylow subgroups, and so G is not simple. These results cover all numbers less than 60, with the exception of 30, 36, 40, 42, 48, 54, and 56. Example shows that a group of order 30 cannot be simple. It is easy to check the following: in a group of order 40, the Sylow 5-subgroup is normal; in a group of order 42, the Sylow 7-subgroup is normal; in a group of order 54, the Sylow 3-subgroup is normal. The case n = 56 is left as an easy exercise. We will use the following proposition to show that no group of order 36 or 48 can be simple, which finishes the argument Proposition. Let G be a finite simple group of order n, and let H be any proper, nontrivial subgroup of G. (a) If k = [G : H], then n is a divisor of k!. (b) If H has m conjugates, then n is a divisor of m!. Proof. (a) Let S be the set of left cosets of H, and let G act on S by defining a x H = (ax)h, for all a, x G. For any left coset x H and any a, b G, we have a(bx H) = (ab)x H. Since e(x H) = (ex)h = x H, this does define a group action. The corresponding homomorphism φ : G Sym(S) is nontrivial, so φ must be one-to-one since G is simple. Therefore Sym(S) contains a subgroup isomorphic to G, and so n is a divisor of k! = Sym(S). (b) Let S be the set of subgroups conjugate to H, and define an action of G on S as in Example 7.3.7, by letting a K = ak a 1, for all a G and all K S. In this case, Sym(S) = m!, and the proof follows as in part (a) Proposition. The alternating group A 5 is the smallest nonabelian simple group. Proof. Assuming the result in Exercise 1 the proof can now be completed by disposing of the cases n = 36 and n = 48. For a group of order 36, there must be either 1 or 4 Sylow 3-subgroups. Since 36 is not a divisor of 4!, the group cannot be simple. For a group of order 48, there must be either 1 or 3 Sylow 2-subgroups. Since 48 is not a divisor of 3!, the group cannot be simple.

23 7.10. CLASSIFICATION OF GROUPS OF SMALL ORDER 501 EXERCISES: SECTION Complete the proof that A 5 is the smallest nonabelian simple group by showing that there is no simple group of order Prove that the automorphism group of Z 2 Z 2 is isomorphic to S Show that the nonabelian group Z 3 (Z 2 Z 2 ) is isomorphic to the dihedral group D Show that the nonabelian group Z 3 Z 4 is generated by elements a of order 6, and b of order 4, subject to the relations b 2 = a 3 and ba = a 1 b.

24 502 BIBLIOGRAPHY BIBLIOGRAPHY Dummit, D., and R. Foote, Abstract Algebra (3 rd ed.). John Wiley & Sons, Herstein, I. N., Topics in Algebra (2 nd ed.). John Wiley & Sons, Hungerford, T., Algebra. Springer-Verlag New York, Isaacs, I. M., Algebra, a graduate course. Brooks/Cole, 1993 Jacobson, N., Basic Algebra I (2 nd ed.). W. H. Freeman, , Basic Algebra II (2 nd ed.). W. H. Freeman, Lang, S., Algebra (3 rd ed.). Springer-Verlag New York, Rotman, J. J., Advanced Algebra. (2 nd ed.). Springer-Verlag New York, , An Introduction to the Theory of Groups. (4 th ed.). Springer-Verlag New York, Van der Waerden, B. L., Algebra vol. 1. Springer-Verlag New York, 2003.

25 INDEX 503 Index action, linear, 493 ascending central series, 485 central series, ascending, 485 Frattini s argument, 487 group, nilpotent, 485 holomorph, 490, 492 H n holomorph of Z n, 492 linear action, 493 nilpotent group, 485 product, semidirect, 488, 491 semidirect product, 488, 491 X µ G semidirect product of groups, 491

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