# Some remarks on Frobenius and Lefschetz in étale cohomology

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1 Some remarks on obenius and Lefschetz in étale cohomology Gabriel Chênevert January 5, 2004 In this lecture I will discuss some more or less related issues revolving around the main idea relating (étale) cohomology and the zeta function of a scheme X over F p, which is: via the Lefschetz trace formula, studying the zeta function amounts to studying the representation of the obenius morphism on cohomology. I will start to try to clarify a bit which obenius morphism we re interested in, and then we ll look explicitely at some examples of 0-dimensional schemes (for which the Lefschetz trace formula takes a particularly simple form!). The absolute obenius morphism Let s start by studying the obenius morphism in some generality. The first thing to do is to restrict ourselves to the subcategory of schemes which do admit a obenius morphism. Throughout, p will be understood to stand for a fixed prime number. Definition.. A scheme X is said to be of characteristic p if p O X = 0. Of course, a given scheme cannot have two distinct prime characteristics unless its structure sheaf is 0, i.e. unless it is Spec 0, the initial object in the category of schemes. Remark that saying that X is of characteristic p amounts to saying that the (unique!) morphism X Spec Z factors through Spec F p. X Spec Z Spec F p Thus, saying that a scheme is of characteristic p is the same thing as saying that it may be viewed as a scheme over Spec F p. Definition.2. Let X be a scheme of characteristic p. We define the (absolute) obenius endomorphism of X X : X X (we will drop the X from the notation X when this causes no ambiguity) as the morphism which is the identity on X and the p th -power map on O X (this really defines a morphism of sheaves of rings since p O X = 0).

2 Example.3. If X = Spec A is affine, the obenius endomorphism of X arises from the obenius endomorphism a a p of A (check that this really induces the identity on Spec A ). This endomorphism behaves functorially, in the sense that for each morphism Y X (which automatically makes Y into a scheme over F p provided X is one), the following diagram commutes. Y Y X X In particular, the obenius endomorphism of X is an endomorphism of X as a scheme over F p (since the obenius morphism of Spec F p is the identity). Remark.4. Similarly, if X is a scheme over F q, where q = p n, then it may also be viewed as a scheme over F p, so it has a obenius morphism, and n (which raises fonctions to the q th power) is a morphism of X as a scheme over F q. When it is clear that X is to be considered as a scheme over F q, we may want to call n the obenius morphism of X and denote it by. 2 Functoriality of cohomology Before discussing the action of the obenius morphism of X on its étale cohomology, it might be useful to recall some general functoriality properties of cohomology of (étale) sheaves. Let T X be a Grothendieck topology with final object X and denote by Sh(X) the category of sheaves on T X with values in some fixed abelian category (i.e. of contravariant functors from T X into this abelian category satisfying the sheaf axiom). If Sh(X) has enough injectives, then for each F Sh(X), the cohomology groups H (X, F) are defined in the usual way: first apply the global sections functor to an injective resolution of F, then take the cohomology of the resulting complex. We may roughly think of the cohomology as a bifunctor, covariant in the second variable and contravariant in the first. This is made precise by the following propositions. Proposition 2.. For F, G Sh(X), a morphism F G induces a natural map H (X, F) H (X, G). Proof. Choose injective resolutions of F and G. By the lifting property of injective resolutions, the morphism F G induces a morphism between them, which is unique up to homotopy. 0 F I 0 G J Applying the global sections functor to I J and taking cohomology, we get the required map. 2

3 Recall that if f : T X T Y is a continuous map between two Grothendieck topologies with final objects (i.e. a functor f : T Y T X preserving fibered products, coverings and final objects), then to any sheaf F on T X we can associate a sheaf f F on T Y, defined by This defines a direct image functor f F := F f. f : Sh(X) Sh(Y ). It is also possible to define an inverse image functor f : Sh(Y ) Sh(X) provided we have a good sheafification process at hand (see [M] for details). If this is the case, for G Sh(Y ) we can define f G by mimicking the usual definition, i.e. by sheafifying the presheaf defined by U lim G(V ) where the direct limit is taken over all open sets V T Y such that there exists an inclusion U f (V ). Remark 2.2. If f : T X T Y is an homeomorphism of Grothendieck topologies with inverse g, then the functor f coincides with g. Indeed, in this case, the directed set over which we take the direct limit has a maximal element, namely g (U), and the above presheaf is just the sheaf g F. Example 2.3. Recall that any morphism of schemes f : X Y induces a continuous function f : Xét Yét, i.e. a functor f : Yét Xét, obtained by base-changing the étale open sets of Y to étale open sets of X (remember that the property of being étale is preserved under base change). X Y U U Thus, in this case for F Sh(Xét ) we have X f Y f F(U) = F(X Y U) and for G Sh(Y ), f G is the sheafification (again see [M]) of the presheaf U lim G(V ) where the direct limit is taken over all commutative diagrams of the following form. U V X f Y Example 2.4. If X is a scheme and ι : Xét X Zar the natural map between its étale and Zariski sites, then the direct image functor ι : Sh(Xét ) Sh(X Zar ) 3

4 is the functor which forgets the values of a sheaf on non-zariski open sets, and the inverse image ι : Sh(X Zar ) Sh(Xét ) is just the étalization functor F F ét which we already discussed. Proposition 2.5. If f : X Y is a morphism of schemes, then the inverse image functors of f commute with étalization, i.e. the following diagram of functors is commutative. Sh(Y Zar ) f Sh(X Zar ) ét ét Sh(Yét ) f Sh(Xét ) Proof. This diagram arises from the following commutative diagram of continuous maps. Y Zar f X Zar ι ι Yét f Xét Since étale constant sheaves are just étalizations of Zariski constant sheaves and the inverse image of a Zariski constant sheaf is constant, we get the following corollary. Corollary 2.6. Inverse images of étale constant sheaves are étale constant sheaves. If f : T X T Y is a continuous map of Grothendieck topologies, the functors f and f between Sh(X) and Sh(Y ) are adjoint, meaning that for all F Sh(X) and G Sh(Y ) we get a natural isomorphism Hom Sh(X) (f G, F) = Hom Sh(Y ) (G, f F) which gives us natural adjunction morphims f f F F and G f f G corresponding to f F and f G respectively. Moreover, in general f is exact, which by adjointness implies that f is left exact. Proposition 2.7. Suppose Sh(X) and Sh(Y ) have enough injective and that we have a continous map f : T X T Y which induces such a f functor. Then, for any sheaf F on Y, we get a natural map f : H (Y, F) H (X, f F). Proof. Choose a an injective resolution 0 F I of F. Applying the functor f, which is exact, we obtain a resolution (most probably not injective anymore) of f F. It has a map (unique up to 4

5 homotopy) into any chosen injective resolution of f F. The composed map 0 f F f I (resolution) 0 f F J (injective resolution) Γ(Y, I ) Γ(X, f I ) Γ(X, J ) where the first map is given by the definition of f and the second comes from f I J, gives rise to the desired map in cohomology. Remark 2.8. Similarly, if F is a sheaf on X there is a map H (Y, f F) H (X, F) obtained as the composition H (Y, f F) H (X, f f F) H (X, F) where the second map comes from the adjunction map f f F F. In particular, if f : X Y is a morphism of schemes and Λ a constant (étale) sheaf, since f Λ = Λ we get a map f : H ét(y, Λ) H ét(x, Λ) in cohomology. Applying this to the constant sheaves Λ = Z/l n Z, we obtain a map at the level of l-adic cohomology. f : H (Y, Q l ) H (X, Q l ) 3 The action of obenius on cohomology Now let s look at what the obenius map : X X induces at the level of the l-adic cohomology of a scheme of characteristic p > 0. To understand the continuous map of the étale site of X that it induces, we need to know how base-changing by obenius affects étale morphisms. Lemma 3.. For any étale morphism ϕ : U X, the following diagram is Cartesian, i.e. we may identify the fibered product X X U with U. U U ϕ X X ϕ 5

6 Proof. We already know that the given diagram commutes, thus, by the universal property of the fibered product, there exists a unique diagonal arrow in the following diagram (this is what is called U/X, the obenius morphism of U relative to X in [H]). U X X U ϕ X ϕ U X ϕ We have to show that this is an isomorphism under the assumption that ϕ is étale. By the local description of étale maps, we can reduce the problem to the case where X = Spec A and U = Spec B with ( ) fi B = A[x,..., x n ]/(f,..., f n ), det B. x j In the corresponding diagram of rings B A A B B A A the diagonal map is given by a b ab p. If it is possible (is it?) to show directly that it is an isomorphism, then this would complete the proof. Else we have to go through an indirect argument as in [H, prop. 2]. First, we know that ϕ is étale because it is obtained by base-changing the étale map ϕ. But since ϕ = ϕ U/X and that both ϕ and ϕ are étale, we conclude that U/X is étale. Moreover, from the fact that both obenius morphisms X and U are universally bijective (i.e. that they remain bijective under base change), it is possible to conclude that U/X is also universally bijective (see [GD, I 3.6, 3.7], where universally injective is called radiciel). Since U/X is both étale and universally bijective, it is an isomorphism. What this lemma asserts is that the continuous function : Xét Xét induced by the absolute obenius morphism of X is (naturally equivalent to) the identity, which gives us the following corollary. Corollary 3.2. If X is a scheme of characteristic p, then for any étale sheaf F on X, both F and F are canonically isomorphic to F, and the map is the identity. : H ét(x, F) H ét(x, F) 6

7 4 The 4 obeniuses on X In this section, in order to simplify the notation, let k denote the field F p of p elements and fix an algebraic closure k k of k. If X is a scheme over k, we can extend the scalars to get a scheme X over k. X := Spec k k X X X Spec k Spec k It appears that on X, there coexists four different obenius morphisms:. the absolute obenius morphism which we discussed in the previous sections; 2. the relative obenius morphism : X X r := Spec k k X obtained by base change of the obenius morphism of X (it is also sometimes called the k-linear obenius morphism of X, because it is a morphism of X as a k-scheme); 3. the arithmetical obenius morphism a := Spec k k X obtained by base-changing the obenius morphism of Spec k; 4. the geometrical obenius morphism g := Spec k k X which is the inverse of the arithmetical obenius morphism. Example 4.. In the case where X = Spec A and A = k[t,..., t n ] is a finitely generated k-algebra, then X = Spec(k k A) = Spec k[t,..., t n ]. Then on an element of k[t,..., t n ], which is a polynomial in the t i s with coefficients in k:. the relative obenius r corresponds to raising the t i s to the p; 2. the arithmetical obenius a corresponds to raising the coefficents to the p; 3. the geometrical obenius g corresponds to taking p th roots of the coefficients; 4. and the absolute obenius corresponds to raising both the t i s and the coefficients to the p th power (which is the same thing as raising our element to the p). 7

8 Let s look at how these morphisms are related. By functoriality of base change, we have r a = ( k ) ( k ) = k = ( k ) ( k ) = a r. But, by definition, k is the unique diagonal arrow which makes the following diagram commutative. X X X X Spec k Spec k Spec k Since the absolute obenius of X also makes it commutative, by unicity of k we get that r a = = a r, i.e. that the absolute obenius morphism of X is the composition of its relative and arithmetical obenius morphisms. r X a X X a X Thus the continuous maps they induce on the étale site of X are inverse one to the other (because induces the identity). Xét a r r Xét r Xét a Xét This means that r is an homeomorphism of Xét with inverse a, i.e. the relative obenius r and the geometrical obenius g = a induce the same continuous function F : Xét Xét which we may call the geometrical obenius correspondence on Xét. The following proposition follows. Proposition 4.2. For any étale sheaf F on X, the relative and geometrical obenius morphisms induce the same map in cohomology, i.e. In particular, they act the same in l-adic cohomology. r = g : H ét(x, F F) H ét(x, F). r = g : H (X, Q l ) H (X, Q l ) 8

9 If X is of finite type, we know that the fixed points of n r, the n th iterate of the relative obenius morphism, is the set of points in X with coordinates x i such that x pn i = x i i.e. the set X(F p n) of F p n-rational points of X. If X is smooth and proper over k, we can compute N n (X) := #X(F p n) either by applying the Lefschetz trace formula to n r or to n g on H (X, Q l ), l p, since they induce the same thing on cohomology (hence the name geometrical obenius ). Remark 4.3. Even if we worked with a Weil cohomology on which r and g do not induce the same map (any example?), we could still equally well compute this number by applying Lefschetz to either one of the relative or geometrical obenius, since the number of fixed points of a function does not depend on the cohomology theory that we are using. 5 Lefschetz trace formula for 0-dimensional schemes In this section, we will establish directly the Lefschetz trace formula in the case of a scheme of dimension 0. Let s begin by looking at how a morphism f : X X acts on H 0 (X, Q l ) for any scheme X. Let X be a scheme and π 0 (X) the set of its connected components. For any abelian group Λ, we know that H 0 ét(x, Λ) = Γ(X, Λ) = Λ π0(x). We see that following diagram commutes, where the bottom arrow is the Λ-linear map induced by π 0 (f) : π 0 (X) π 0 (X) (which sends the connected component of a point x to the connected component of f(x)). Hét 0 (X, Λ) f 0 Hét 0 (X, Λ) Λ π0(x) Λ π0(x) Writing f 0 : Λ π0(x) Λ π0(x) in matrix notation with regards to the natural basis of Λ π0(x), we see that its trace is the number of connected components stabilized by f, i.e. the number of fixed points of π 0 (f) : π 0 (X) π 0 (X), this integer being interpreted in the abelian group Λ. In particular, the trace of f 0 : H 0 (X, Q l ) H 0 (X, Q l ) really is the number of connected components of X stablized by f (since the characteristic of Q l is 0). In the particular case where X is a 0-dimensional scheme, the connected components of X are just its points, so that X and π 0 (X) are identified, identifying f with π 0 (f). Thus, the number number of fixed points L(f, X) of f may be computed via L(f, X) = Tr(f 0 ; H 0 (X, Q l )) (this is the Lefschetz trace formula for 0-dimensional schemes!). Example 5.. If X is a scheme of finite type over k = F q, then for any n N n (X) = L(F n, X) = Tr (F n ) 0 9

10 where F denotes either the relative or geometrical obenius morphism of X. Substituting this into the formula ( ) N n (X) Z(X, t) = exp t n n n= for the zeta function of X, we get the expected result Z(X, t) = det( F 0 t). Example 5.2. Let s look explicitely at the map induced by the relative obenius morphism in the case where X = Spec ( k[x]/(f) ) where f is a non-constant polynomial. Factoring f = f e f m em into irreducibles in k[x] and using the Chinese remainder theorem to get X = Spec ( k[x]/(f) ) = Spec ( m i= ) k[x]/(f ei i ) = m i= Spec ( k[x]/(f ei i ) ) we see that if suffices to consider the case where f has a unique irreducible factor. Moreover, since Spec ( k[x]/(f m ) ) and Spec ( k[x]/(f)) have the same number of K-rational points for any field K, we may also restrict ourselves to the case where f is irreducible. In this case, since k = F q is a perfect field, f is separable over k; if its degree is n, let α,... α n stand for its n distinct roots in k. Now, the relative obenius morphism corresponds to r : X X k[x]/(f) k[x]/(f) which sends (the class of) a polynomial g(x) to (the class of) g(x q ). isomorphism k[x]/(f) = k n which sends g(x) to the vector (g(α ),..., g(α n )), we get a commutative diagram Combining this with the k[x]/(f) = k n k[x]/(f) k n = in which the bottow arrow is (g(α ),..., g(α n )) (g(α q ),..., g(αq n)) i.e. indeed corresponds to the permutation α i α q i of the roots, which are the points of X. 6 Examples of global zeta functions Now let s look at some examples of 0-dimensional schemes X Spec Z for which, for any prime number p, we are able to compute the zeta function Z(X p, t) of X p := X Z Spec F p = X F p 0

11 as a scheme over F p and then multiply them all together to obtain ζ(x, s) = p Z(X p, p s ) the global zeta function of X. Example 6.. First of all, the trivial example of X := Spec 0 Spec Z, i.e. X = with the 0 sheaf of functions. For any prime number p, X p = Spec(0 F p ) = Spec 0, which has no points over any extension F p n of F p, thus Z(X p, t) = exp(0) = (which agrees with the fact the relative obenius induces the 0 linear map on H 0 (X p, Q l )), and so ζ(x, s) = p =. Example 6.2. Now, the simplest non-trivial example: let s consider X := Spec Z as a scheme over Spec Z (we may view X as Spec Z[x]/(x)). Then for each p and n, X p has exactly one F p n-rational point, so that ( Z(X p, t) = exp r= (and indeed obenius acts as the identity on H 0 ). Thus t r r ) = exp( log( t)) = t ζ(x, s) = p Z(X p, p s ) = p p s = n s n= which is nothing but ζ(s), the Riemann zeta function. Example 6.3. If X := Spec Z[x]/(x(x )), then X has 2 points over any F p n, so that for any p ( Z(X p, t) = exp 2 tr r r= ) = exp( 2 log( t)) = ( t) 2 which agrees with the fact that obenius acts as the identity on the 2-dimensional vector space H 0. And so we get ζ(x, s) = p ( ) 2 ( p s ) 2 = p s = ζ(s) 2. p Since by the Chinese remainder theorem X = Spec Z Spec Z, this should come as no surprise. Example 6.4. Let f = x 2 x and consider X := Spec Z[x]/(f) (as in [S]). For any prime number p 2, by the quadratic formula, the equation x 2 x 0 mod (p) is equivalent to x 2 5 mod (p)

12 thus it has exactly ( ( 5 p) + solutions, which is equal to p ) 5 + because 5 mod (4). Thus the number of solutions of x 2 x 0 mod (p), p 2, is if p = 5 2 if p ± mod (5) 0 if p ±2 mod (5) and now we find that this is also holds for p = 2. For p = 5, f factors as (x 3) 2 in F 5 [x], so that X 5 has exactly one point over each extension F 5 n of F 5. This means that Z(X 5, t) = t. For p ± mod (5), f factors as a product of two linear polynomials in F p [x], so that X p has two points over each F p n, thus Z(X p, t) = ( t) 2. For p ±2 mod (5), f is irreducible in F p [x], thus F p [x]/(f) = F p 2, so that { 0 if n is odd N n (X p ) = #{F p 2 F p n} = 2 if n is even so that in this case we get ( Z(X p, t) = exp n= t 2n ) = exp( log( t 2 )) = n t 2. Putting all this together, we get the global zeta function of X: ζ(x, s) = = p 5 s p ± p s = ζ(s)l(χ, s) p ( p s ) 2 ( p 5 ) p s p ±2 p 2s where L(χ, s) is the Dirichlet L-series for the quadratic character χ = ( 5), defined as L(χ, s) := n= χ(n) n s = p χ(p)p s. References [GD] A. Grothendieck and J. A. Dieudonné, Élements de géométrie algébrique I, Springer-Verlag, 97. [H] C. Houzel, Morphisme de obenius et rationalité des fonctions L, exposé XV in Cohomologie l-adique et fonctions L (SGA 5), Lecture Notes in Math. 589, Springer-Verlag, 977. [K] N. M. Katz, Review of l-adic cohomology, Proc. Symp. Pure Math. (55), 994, [M] J. S. Milne, Lectures on étale cohomology, [S] J.-P. Serre, On a theorem of Jordan, Bulletin of the AMS (40), n 4, oct. 2003,

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