Elliptic curves and chip-firing games on wheel graphs

Combinatorics Seminar
Friday, January 23, 2009 - 15:00
1 hour (actually 50 minutes)
Skiles 255
In this talk, I will discuss chip-firing games on graphs, and the related Jacobian groups. Additionally, I will describe elliptic curves over finite fields, and how such objects also have group structures. For a family of graphs obtained by deforming the sequence of wheel graphs, the cardinalities of the Jacobian groups satisfy a nice reciprocal relationship with the orders of elliptic curves as we consider field extensions. I will finish by discussing other surprising ways that these group structures are analogous. Some of this research was completed as part of my dissertation work at the University of California, San Diego under Adriano Garsia's guidance.