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Lecture Notes on Rings and Modules

Thanasin V. Nampaisarn
Jacobs University Bremen
t.nampaisarn@jacobs-university.de

Spring Semester, 2015

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Factorization in Polynomial Rings

Lemma 0.1. Let D be a unique factorization domain with field of fractions F and x an indeterminate. Two primitive polynomials f (x) and g(x) in D[x] are associates in D[x] if and only if they are
associates in F [x].
Proof of Lemma: The direct implication is trivial, so we shall verify the converse. Suppose
that f (x) and g(x) are associates in the integral domain F [x]. We have that f = g u for some
unit u(x) of F [x]. However, we then have that u(x) is an element of F , whence u(x) = u0 for
b
some u0 F . Now, u0 = for some b, c D with c , 0D . That is, c f = b g. Since the contents
c
C(f ) and C(g) are units in D,
c c C(f ) C(c f ) = C(b g) b C(g) b ,

(1)

where, for p, q D, p q means that p and q are associates in D. Hence, b = cv for some unit
v D, and so c f = b g = cv g, or f = v g. The result follows immediately.
#
Theorem 0.2 (Gausss Lemma). Let D be a unique factorization domain with field of fractions F
and f (x) a primitive polynomial of positive degree in D[x], where x is an indeterminate. Then, f is
irreducible over D if and only if f is irreducible over F .
Proof: The converse is trivial. We shall prove the other direction by contrapositivity. Suppose that
a nonconstant primitive polynomial f (x) D[x] is reducible over F . Then, there are nonconstant
m
n
X
X
ai i
cj j
polynomials g(x) and h(x) in F [x] such that f = gh. Write g(x) =
x and h(x) =
x
i=0 bi
j=0 dj
for some ai , bi , cj , dj D with bi , 0D and dj , 0D for every i = 0, 1, 2, . . . , m and j = 0, 1, 2, . . . , n.
Consider the polynomial g1 (x) := b g(x) D[x], where b := b0 b1 b2 bn . Then, g1 (x) = a g2 (x),
a
where a is the content of g1 , and g2 (x) D[x] is primitive. Therefore, g = g2 with a, b D,
b
c
b , 0D , and g2 (x) D[x] is primitive such that deg(g) = deg (g2 ). Similarly, we can write h = h2
d
with c, d D, d , 0D , and h2 (x) D[x] is primitive such that deg(h) = deg (h2 ). Since f is
primitive and bd f = bd gh = (b g) (d h) = (a g2 ) (c h2 ) = ac g2 h2 , we have
bd bd C(f ) C(bd f ) = C (ac g2 h2 ) ac C (g2 h2 ) ac C (g2 ) C (h2 ) ac .

(2)

Consequently, ac and bd are associates in D, whence f and g2 h2 are associates in D. This means
f is reducible over D.
Q.E.D.
Example 0.3. Let x be an indeterminate. The polynomial f (x) := x3 3x 1 is irreducible in
Q[x], since it is irreducible in Z[x]. To show that f is irreducible over Z, we note that, if it were
reducible, it would have a linear factor, and since f is monic, it would then have an integer root.
Clearly, if f had an integer root, then the root could only be +1 or 1. Since both numbers are not
roots of f , the claim follows.
Exercise 0.4. Let a1 , a2 , . . ., an , and A be integers with A > 0. Prove that the polynomial
P (x) := A

n
Y

(x ai ) 1 is irreducible over Q, where x is an indeterminate.

i=1

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Theorem 0.5. If D is a unique factorization domain, then so is the poylnomial ring D [x1 , x2 , . . . , xn ],
where n N and x1 , x2 , . . . , xn are indeterminates.
Proof: Clearly, we only need to show that D[x] is also a unique factorization domain, where
x is an indeterminate.
The rest follows

 by induction on the number of indeterminates (using
D [x1 , x2 , . . . , xn ] = D [x1 , x2 , . . . , xn1 ] [xn ]).
Let f (x) D[x] be of a positive degree. Then, f = C(f ) f1 for some primitive polynomial
f1 (x) D[x] of the same positive degree as that of f (x). Let F be the field of fractions of D,
so that F [x] is a unique factorization domain. Therefore, f1 = p1 p2 pd for some d N and
irreducible polynomials p1 (x), p2 (x), . . . , pd (x) in F [x]. We can show that, for i = 1, 2, . . . , d, there
ai
exists a primitive polynomial qi (x) D[x] and ai , bi D such that bi , 0D and pi =
qi . That
bi


a1 a2 ad
is, f1 =
q1 q2 qd . Since f1 , q1 , q2 , . . ., qd are primitive over D, we conclude that f
b1 b2 bd
and q1 q2 qd are associates over D. Since D is a unique factorization domain, C(f ) is associate
to a product of irreducible elements of D. Thus, f = C(f ) f1 is a product of irreducible elements
in D[x].
The uniqueness of factorization in D[x] follows immediately from the facts that D is a unique
factorization domain, that a factorization in D[x] is also a factorization in F [x], that irreducible
polynomials in D[x] are irreducible in F [x] as well, and that F [x] is also a unique factorization
domain. The proof is now complete.
Q.E.D.
Corollary 0.6. Let D be a unique factorization domain and X a set of indeterminates. Then,
the polynomial ring D[X] is a unique factorization domain.
Theorem 0.7 (Extended Eisensteins Criterion). Let D be a unique factorization domain. Let
f (x) =

n
X

ai xi , where n N, a0 , a1 , a2 , . . . , an D, and x is an indeterminate. If, for some k N0

i=0

with k < n and for some irreducible p D, we have p | a0 , p | a1 , . . ., p | ak1 , p - ak , and p2 - a0 ,


then f (x) has an irreducible factor in D[x] of a degree at least k.
Proof: Write f = C(f ) f1 , where f1 (x) D[x] is primitive and C(f ) D is not divisible by p. It
suffices to show that f1 (x) has an irreducible factor of degree at least k in D[x]. Since p divides
the constant term of f1 (x), there exists an irreducible factor g(x) of f1 (x) whose constant term is
divisible by p. Write g(x) =

l
X

bj xj for some l N and b0 , b1 , . . . , bl D such that bl , 0. Suppose

j=0

that f1 (x) = g(x) h(x) for some h(x) =

r
X

cj xj , where r N0 and c0 , c1 , . . . , cr D such that

j=0

cr , 0D .
Because p2 - a0 , we conclude that p - c0 . The first-degree term of f1 has coefficient b1 c0 + b0 c1 ,
which is divisible by p. Since p - c0 and p | b0 , we conclude that p | b1 . By induction, we can show
that p divides b0 , b1 , b2 , . . . , bk1 . Since p - ak , we can also verify that p - bk . Therefore, l k and
the result follows immediately.
Q.E.D.
2

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Corollary 0.8 (Eisensteins Criterion). Let D be a unique factorization domain with field of
fractions F . Let f (x) =

n
X

ai xi , where n N, a0 , a1 , a2 , . . . , an D, and x is an indeterminate. If,

i=0

for some irreducible p D, p | a0 , p | a1 , . . ., p | an1 , p - an , and p2 - a0 , then f is irreducible over


F . If f is primitve, it is irreducible over D.
Example 0.9. Let p N be a prime number and x an indeterminate. The p-th cyclotomic
xp 1
def
, whence
polynomial p (x) == xp1 + xp2 + + x + 1 is irreducible, since p (x) =
x1
p1
X p
(x + 1)p 1
= xp1 +
xr1 ,
p (x + 1) =
x
r
r=1

(3)

where Eisensteins Criterion applies.


Exercise 0.10. Let x be an indeterminate. Find all positive integers n such that the polynomial
Pn (x) := xn 2 xn1 15 is reducible over Z.
Definition 0.11 (Derivatives
! of Polymomials). Let R be a ring and X a set of indeterminates. For
Y
Y

xkx to be ky c y ky 1
xkx for every (kx )xX NX
c
y X, define
0 such that, for only
y
xX
xX\{y}

finitely many x X, kx , 0, and for any c R. The operator


is defined on R [X] via term-byy

term application. Write x for (x)xX . For f (x) R [x] = R[X] and y X,
f (x) is called the
y
(first) formal derivative of f (x) with respect to y.
d

d
If x is an indeterminate, then
is the same as
on R[x]. We usually write f 0 (x) for
f (x),
dx
x
dx0

def
def
where f (x) R[x]. For f (x) R[x], define f (0) (x) == f (x) and, for r N, f (r) (x) == f (r1) (x).
For every f (x) R[x] and r N0 , the polynomial f (r) (x) is called the r-th formal derivative of f .
Proposition 0.12. Let D be an integral domain, X a set of indeterminates, and x := (x)xX . For
f (x) , g (x) D [x] and y X, we have

c f (x)
(a)
y


=c

(b)
f (x) + g (x)
y


(c)
f (x) g (x)
y


f (x) for every c R,


y
!

f (x) +
g (x) ,
y
y
!

= f (x)

k

k1

(d)
f (x) = k f (x)
y

g(x) +
f (x) g(x), and
y
y
!

f (x) for every k N0 .


y

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Definition 0.13 (Multiple Roots). Let D be an integral domain and x an indeterminate. For c D
and f (x) D[x], we say that c is a root of f with multiplicity m N if f (x) = (x c)m g(x) for
some g(x) D[x] not divisible by x c. We say that c is a simple root of f if it has multiplicity 1.
If c is a root of multiplicity m > 1, then we say that c is a multiple root.
Theorem 0.14. Let D be an integral domain which is a subring of an integral domain E, and x an
inderminate. A polynomial f (x) D[x] and c E are given.
(1) The element c is a multiple root of f if and only if f (c) = 0E and f 0 (c) = 0E .
(2) If D is a field and f is relatively prime to f 0 , then f has no multiple roots in E.
(3) If D is a field, f is irreducible over D, and E contains a root of f , then f has no multiple roots
in E if and only if f 0 (x) , 0D .
(4) If D is of characteristic 0, then c is a root of f of multiplicity m N in E if and only if f (r) (c) = 0E
for all r = 0, 1, 2, . . . , m 1 and f (m) (c) , 0E .
Example 0.15. Let F be a field of characteristic p , 2. The polynomial P (x, y, z) := x2 +y 2 +z 2 is
irreducible in F [x, y, z], where x, y, z are indeterminates. To prove this, we start with the observation
that F [x, y, z] = D[x], where D := F [y, z] is a unique
factorization domain. We want to use

2
2
2
Eisensteins Criterion with P (x, y, z) = x + y + z , and therefore, we need to show that there is


2

no irreducible element q(y, z) F [y, z] = D such that q(y, z) divides Q(y, z) := y 2 + z 2 . Suppose
contrary that such q(y, z) D exists.
Since D = F [y, z] = E[y], where E := F [z] is an integral domain, and Q(y, z) is a monic
polynomial of degree 2 in the variable y, we conclude that q(y, z) F [y, z] = E[y] is linear in y. Let
K be the field of fraction of E (i.e., K = F (z)). This means the equationq(y, z) = 0F in the variable
y has a solution in K and, therefore, Q(y, z) as an element of K[y] has a multiple root c(z) K (i.e.,



Q(y, z) as elements of
Q c(z), z = 0F ). By the previous theorem, we conclude that Q(y, z) and
y
K[y] must have a common factor. However,
y
Q(y, z)
2

 




y
Q(y, z) = y 2 + z 2
(2y) = z 2
y
2
 

(4)

is a unit of K, where we have used to hypothesis that the characteristic of F is p , 2. This means

Q(y, z) and
Q(y, z) are relatively prime in K[y], and we have a contradiction.
y
Note that, if char(F ) = 2, P (x, y, z) is reducible. A factorization is P (x, y, z) = (x + y + z)2 .
Exercise 0.16. Let D and E be integral domains with D E, and x an indeterminate. Suppose
that f (x) D[x] is irreducible over D. If D is of characteristic 0, then show that f has no multiple
roots in E. If p is a positive prime integer, give an example where f has a multiple root in E with
D having characteristic p.

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Definitions and Basic Properties of Ring Modules

Definition 1.1 (Left Modules). Let (R, +, ) be a ring. A left R-module is an abelian group (M, +)
together with a scalar left-multiplication : R M M such that
(i) r (m + n) = (r m) + (r n),
(ii) (r + s) m = (r m) + (s m), and
(iii) (r s) m = r (s m),
for every r R, s S, and m, n M . If R is unital with identity 1R , then we say that M is unitary
if 1R m = m for all m M . If R is a division ring, then a left unitary R-module is called a left
R-vector space.
Definition 1.2 (Right Modules). Let (R, +, ) be a ring. A right R-module is an abelian group
(M, +) together with a scalar right-multiplication : M R M such that
(i) (m + n) r = (m r) + (n r),
(ii) m (r + s) = (m r) + (m s), and
(iii) m (r s) = (m r) s,
for every r R, s S, and m, n M . If R is unital with identity 1R , then we say that M is unitary
if m 1R = m for all m M . If R is a division ring, then a right unitary R-module is called a right
R-vector space.
Definition 1.3 (Bimodules). Let (R, +, ) and (S, +, ) be rings. An (R, S)-bimodule M is a left
R-module M equipped with a right S-module structure in such a way that (r m) s = r (m s)
for each r R, m M , and s S.
Remark 1.4.
(1) Without specification, a module or a vector space is taken to be a left module or a left vector
space, respectively.
(2) If R is commutative, then a left R-module M is also a right R-module via the identification
def
m r == r m for all r R and m M , and vice versa. Therefore, every (left or right) Rmodule is an (R, R)-bimodule. Without specification, an R-module is given the aforementioned
(R, R)-bimodule structure if R is commutative.
(3) We shall ignore right modules for the most part of our discussion since results for left modules
hold equivalently for right modules.
Example 1.5.
(1) Every abelian group is a unitary Z-module.
(2) If R is a subring of a ring S, then an S-module is also an R-module.
5

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn
def

(3) If I is a left ideal of a ring R, then R/I is a left R-module via the definition r (s + I) == r s + I
for all r, s R. Similarly, if I is a right ideal of R, then R/I is a right R-module.
(4) If R and S are rings and : R S is a ring homomorphism, then any S-module M can be made
def
into an R-module via the pullback along : for every r R and m M , r m == (r) m.
def

(5) For a ring R, any abelian group A can be given a trivial module structure by defining r a == 0A
for all r R and a A. Here, 0A is the additive identity of A.
Exercise 1.6. Let R and S be rings. The set of all ring homomorphisms from R to S is given by
Hom(R, S), which is clearly an abelian group under (f + g)(x) = f (x) + g(x) for all f, g Hom(R, S)
and x R. For f Hom(R, S), we define r f and f s for r R and s S by
(a) (r f )(x) = f (x r) and


(b) (f s)(x) = f (x) s,


for all x R. Verify that this gives an (R, S)-bimodule structure on Hom(R, S).
Alternatively, if we define f r and s f , for r R, s S, and f Hom(R, S), by
(a) (f r)(x) = f (r x) and


(b) (s f )(x) = s f (x) ,


for all x R. Justify that this gives an (S, R)-bimodule structure on Hom(R, S). In fact, we can
also give Hom(R, S) an (R, R)-bimodule structure, as well as an (S, S)-bimodule structure, using the
same scalar multiplications as above.
Definition 1.7 (Submodules). Let R be a ring and M an R-module. An R-submodule N of M is
a subset of M which is also an R-module. We say that N is proper if N , M . If M is a nontrivial
R-module without a nonzero proper R-submodule, then we say that M is simple. If R is a division
ring, then an R-submodule of an R-vector space M is called an R-vector subspace.
Definition 1.8 (Module Generators). If X is a subset of a module M over a ring R, then the
intersection hXi of all R-submodules of A containing X is called the R-submodule generated by X,
or the R-submodule spanned by X. If X is finite and X generates the module B, then B is said to
be finitely generated. If X is a singleton {x}, then the module hxi it generates is called cyclic.
Example 1.9.
(1) The zero module 0 is generated by the empty set.
(2) Every simple module is cyclic. In fact, a module is simple if and only if any nonzero element
generates the whole module.
(3) The Z-module Z is cyclic. However, neither is it simple nor does it have a simple Z-submodule.

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Exercise 1.10. Let G be a group and R a ring. The group ring R[G] is an R-module of the form

tg g | tg G for all g G and there are only finitely many g G such that tg , 0R

(5)

gG

equipped with scalar multiplication

def

tg g ==

gG

for every r R and

(r tg ) g ,

(6)

gG

tg g R[G], and with ring multiplication in accordance with the multiplication

gG

rule in G. That is, if rg and sg are elements


finitely many
of R for
g G such
that there
are only
g G such that rg , 0R and sg , 0R , then

rg g

gG

def

sg g ==

gG

gG

rh sh1 g g.

hG

Now, consider the ring S := C S 3 , where S k is the k-th symmetric group for every k N0 .
Show that S is unital and all unitary S-modules are vector spaces over C. Prove that every simple
S-module is a finite-dimensional C-vector space. Describe all simple S-modules.
Theorem 1.11. Let R be a ring and M an R-module.
def

(a) For m M , R m == {r m | r R} is an R-submodule of M .


(b) For m M , hmi = {r m + k m | r R and k Z}. If R is unital and 1R m = m, then hmi is
unitary and equals R m.
(c) If X is a subset of M , then
hXi =

s
X

r i xi +

i=1

t
X

kj yj | s, t N0 , i [s], j [t], xi , yj X, ri R , and kj Z

, (7)

j=1

def

def

where [l] == {1, 2, . . . , l} for all l N and [0] == . If R is unital and 1R x = x for every x X,
then hXi is unitary and
hXi =

( s
X

ri xi | s N0 , xi X, ri R , and kj Z for all i = 1, 2, . . . , s

(8)

i=1

Definition 1.12 (Sum of Submodules). Let M be a module over a ring


X R. For an index set J
along with a collection {Nj | j J} of R-submodules of M , we write
Nj for the R-submodule
jJ

+
[

Nj , which is called the sum of the modules Nj s. If J = {1, 2, . . . , n} for some n N0 , we also

jJ

write N1 + N2 + + Nn in place of

Nj .

jJ

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Theorem 1.13. Let J be an index set. The sum of the family {Nj | j J} of R-submodules of a
module M over a ring R consists of all finite sums ni1 + ni2 + + nil , where l N0 , i1 , i2 , . . . , il J,
and nik Nik for k = 1, 2, . . . , l.
Theorem 1.14 (Direct Sum and Direct Product of Modules). Let J be an index set and {Mj | j J}
a family of modules over a ring R.
(a) The direct product

Mj of abelian groups Mj s is indeed an R-module with the action of R

jJ
def

given by r (aj )jJ == (r aj )jJ . We call

Mj the (external) direct product of the family

jJ

{Mj | j J} of R-modules.
(b) The direct sum

Mj of abelian groups Mj s is indeed an R-submodule of

jJ

Mj . We call

jJ

Mj the (external) direct sum of the family {Mj | j J} of R-modules.

jJ

(c) If J is finite, then the direct product and the direct


for some
Y sum coincide. If J = {1, 2, . . . , l}M
Mj ; of
Mj and M1 M2 Ml for
l N0 , we may write M1 M2 Ml for
jJ

jJ

course,

Mj = M1 M2 Ml = M1 M2 Ml =

Mj .

jJ

jJ

Theorem 1.15 (Quotient Modules). Let R be a ring. Suppose that N is an R-submodule of an


R-module M . Then the quotient abelian group M/N has an R-module structure given by
def

r (m + N ) == (r m) + N

(9)

for all r R and m M . The quotient M/N with this R-module structure is called the quotient
module of M by N .
Exercise 1.16. Let R be a ring and M an R-module. Suppose that M has a maximal proper
R-submodule N . Prove that, if R M is not contained in N (which automatically holds if R is unital
and M is a unitary R-module), then M/N is a simple R-module. In particular, if J is a maximal
(left) ideal of R such that R R is not contained in J (which holds automatically if R is unital), then
show that R/J is a simple R-module.

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Homomorphisms of Ring Modules

Definition 2.1. Let M and N be modules over a ring R. A homomorphism f : M N of abelian


groups is called an R-module homomorphism if it satisfies the property that f (r m) = r f (m)
for all r R and m M . The set of R-module homomorphisms from M to N is denoted by
def
HomR (M, N ). The set of R-module endomorphisms of M is EndR (M ) == HomR (M, M ). Note that,
if R is a division ring, then an R-module homomorphism is called an R-linear transformation.
We say that f is monic, or that f is a monomorphism, if it is injective. We say that f is epic, or
that f is an epimorphism, if it is surjective. We say that f is iso, or that it is an isomorphism, if it
is bijective. If there exists an isomorphism between R-modules M and N , then we say that M and
N are isomorphic and write M  N . An R-module endomorphism which is an isomorphism is called
an R-module automorphism. The set of R-module automorphisms on M is denoted by AutR (M ).
For a homomorphism
f : M No of R-modules M and N , the kernel ofnf is defined toobe the
n
def
def
set ker(f ) == m M | f (m) = 0M . The image of f is the set im(f ) == f (m) | m M . The
def

def

cokernel of f is coker(f ) == N/ im(f ) and the coimage of f is coim(f ) == M/ ker(f ).


If S is a ring, then an (R, S)-bimodule homomorphism is a left R-module homomorphism which
is also a right S-module homomorphism. Other definitions such as Hom(R,S) , End(R,S) , Aut(R,S) , and
(R, S)-bimodule monomorphisms remain similar.
Remark 2.2.
(1) A module homomorphism is a monomorphism if and only if its kernel is trivial.
(2) For a ring R, the class Mod(R) of all R-modules together with R-module homomorphisms forms
a concrete category. If R is unital, then the class UMod(R) of unitary R-modules along with
R-module homomorphisms is a full subcategory of Mod(R). The zero module 0 over R is both
initial (cofinal) and final (coinitial) in Mod(R) (as well as in UMod(R) if R is unital). In either
of these categories, the categorical definitions of monomorphisms, epimorphisms, isomorphisms,
kernel, cokernel, image, and coimage coincide with our definition above.
(3) Let R be a ring. Define the abelian group S = ZR to be a ring with the following multiplication
rule:
def

(k1 , r1 ) (k2 , r2 ) == (k1 k2 , k1 r2 + k2 r1 + r1 r2 )

(10)

for every k1 , k2 Z and r1 , r2 R. The multiplicative identity of S is clearly 1S = (1, 0R ),


whence S is unital. We call S the unital closure of R. Observe that Mod(R) is the same as
UMod(S). Hence, it is sufficient to study only unitary modules over an arbitrary unital ring.
Example 2.3.
(1) The zero map 0 between two modules over the same ring is a module homomorphism.
(2) Every homomorphism of abelian groups is a Z-module homomorphism.
(3) Let R be a ring and M an R-module. For m M , the map R R m sending r 7 r m for
every r R is an R-module epimorphism.
9

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

(4) Let M and N be a simple module over a ring R. Any R-module homomorphism from M to N
is either the zero homomorphism or an R-module isomorphism.
(5) If R is a ring and x is an indeterminate, the map : R[x] R[x] sending f (x) R[x] to x f (x)
is an R-module homomorphism, but not a ring homomorphism.
(6) Let M and N be modules over a ring R such that M N . The canonical epimorphism (or
the canonical projection) : M M/N sending m m + N for all m M is an R-module
epimorphism with kernel N .
(7) If f : M N is a module homomorphism of modules M and N over a ring R, then ker(f )
and N

is an R-submodule of M and im(f ) is an R-submodule of N .  More


generally,
if M

n
o
= f (m) | m M
is an
are R-submodules of M and N , respectively, then the image f M
 
n
o
= m M | f (m) N
is an R-submodule of N .
R-submodule of N and the preimage f 1 N
h

Exercise 2.4. Consider the ring R = C S 3 . In M := C3 , write e1 := (1, 0, 0), e2 := (0, 1, 0),
and e3 := (0, 0, 1) for the standard basis vectors. There is a natural R-module structure on M in
which ei = e(i) for every S 3 and i = 1, 2, 3. Describe all R-module endomorphisms of M .
Theorem 2.5. Let M and N be modules over a ring R. Suppose that L is an R-submodule of

ker(f ). Then, there is a unique R-module


homomorphism
 f : M/L N such that f (m + L) = f (m)
 
for all m M . Furthermore, im f = im(f ) and ker f = ker(f )/L. The map f is an R-module
isomorphism if and only if f is an R-module epimorphism and L = ker(f ).
and N
are R-submodules
Corollary 2.6. Let M and N be modules over a ring R. Suppose that M
 
N
,
of M and N , respectively. For an R-module homomorphism f : M N such that f M
N/N
given by m + M
7 f (m) + N

f induces an R-module homomorphism f : M/M


  for all
= N and f 1 N
M
.
m M . The map f is an R-module isomorphism if and only if im(f ) + N
 
=N

In particular, f is an R-module isomorphism, if f is an R-module epimorphism such that f M


.
and ker(f ) M
Theorem 2.7 (Isomorphism Theorems). Let R be a ring. Suppose that M , N , and L are R-modules.
(a) Let f : M N be an R-module homomorphism. Then, we have im(f )  M/ ker(f ).
(b) If N and L are R-submodules of M , then N/(N L)  (N + L)/L.
(c) If M N L, then N/L is an R-submodule of M/L, and (M/L)/(N/L)  M/N .
Theorem 2.8. Let M and N be modules over a ring R such that M N . There is a oneto-one correspondence between the set of all R-submodules of M containing N and the set of all
R-submodules over M/N , given by the map L 7 L/N , where L is an R-submodule of M containing
N.

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Exercise 2.9. Let R, S, and T be rings. Suppose that M is an (S, R)-bimodule and N is an (S, T )def
bimodule. Then, justify that HomS (M, N ) is an (R, T )-bimodule via (f + g)(x) == f (x) + g(x),
def
def
(r f )(x) == f (x r), and (f t)(x) == f (x) t for every r R, t T , x M , and maps
f, g HomS (M, N ). In addition, show that the set End(S,R) (M ) = Hom(S,R) (M, M ) of (S, R)bimodule endomorphisms is an (R, R)-submodule of EndS (M ) and also a unital associative (R, R)algebra under the composition; i.e., show that the composition has an identity, is associative, and is
(R, R)-bilinear (that is, f (g+h) = f g+f h, (f +g)h = f h+gh, f (rg) = r(f g) = (rf )g,
and f (g r) = (f g) r = (f r) g, for all f, g, h End(S,R) (M ) and r R).
Theorem 2.10 (Categorical Product of Modules). Let J be an index
Y set and {Mj | j J} a family
of modules over a ring R. For k J, the canonical projection prk :
Mj Mk in the category of
jJ

abelian groups is indeed an R-module epimorphism. Furthermore,

Mj together with prj

jJ


jJ

is a

categorical product of {Mj | j J} in Mod(R), which is unique up to isomorphisms. In other words,


for any R-module N along with a family {j : NY
Mj | j J} of R-module homomorphisms, there
Mj such that prj = j for all j J.
is a unique R-module homomorphism : N
jJ

Theorem 2.11 (Categorical Coproduct of Modules). Let J be an index set M


and {Mj | j J} a family
Mj in the category of
of modules over a ring R. For k J, the canonical injection ink : Mk
abelian groups is indeed an R-module monomorphism. Furthermore,

M jJ

Mj together with (inj )jJ

jJ

is a categorical coproduct of {Mj | j J} in Mod(R), which is unique up to isomorphisms. In other


words, for any R-module N along with a family {
Yj : Mj N | j J} of R-module homomorphisms,
Mj N such that inj = j for all j J.
there is a unique R-module homomorphism :
jJ

Theorem 2.12. Let R be a ring and n N0 . For R-modules A, A1 , A2 , . . ., An , we have that


A  A1 A2 An if and only if, for i = 1, 2, . . . , n, there are R-module homomorphisms
i : A Ai and i : Ai A such that
(i) i i = idAi for i = 1, 2, . . . , n,
(ii) i j = 0 for i, j = 1, 2, . . . , n such that i , j, and
(iii) 1 1 + 2 2 + + n n = idA .
Theorem 2.13 (Internal Direct Sums). Let R be a ring and M an R-module. Suppose that J is an
index set and {Mj | j J} is a family of R-submodules of M such that
(i) M =

Mj , and

jJ

(ii) for each k J, Mk

Mj = 0,

jJ\{k}

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where 0 is the zero R-module. Then, there is an isomorphism M 

Mj and we say that M is the

jJ

(internal) direct sum of a family of R-submodules {Mj | j J}. Furthermore, each Mj is said to be
a direct summand of M .
Definition 2.14 (Semisimple Modules). A module M over a ring R is said to be semisimple if and
only if
(i) for any nonzero m M , R m is nontrivial, and
(ii) every R-submodule of M is a direct summand of M .
It is known that an R-module M is semisimple if and only if it is the sum of a family of the simple
R-submodules, or equivalently, it is the (internal) direct sum of a family of its simple R-submodules.
Another equivalent notion for M to be semisimple is that M is isomorphic to a direct sum of simple
R-modules.
Definition 2.15 (Indecomposable Modules). A module M over a ring R is said to be indecomposable
if M cannot be written as an (internal) direct sum N L of nonzero R-submodules N and L; otherwise,
we say that M is decomposable.
Example 2.16.
(1) Every simple module is indecomposable and semisimple.
(2) If R is a unital ring and M is a semisimple R-module, then M is unitary.
(3) The Z-module Z is indecomposable, but not semisimple.
Exercise 2.17. Let F be a field (in fact, F can be any division ring) and V a finite-dimensional
vector space over F . Take R to be the ring EndF (V ) of F -linear transformations on V (obviously, R
is unital). An R-module M is provided.
(a) Prove that there are R-submodules N and L of M satisfying the following conditions:
(i) N is a trivial R-module,
(ii) L is a unitary R-module, and
(iii) M = N L.
(The statement above holds for any unital ring R and any R-module M .)
(b) Show that L is a vector space over F .
(c) If n := dimF (V ), then verify that a simple R-module is a vector space over F of dimension n
and it is unique up to isomorphisms.
(d) Justify that L is a semisimple R-module.
(e) If l := dimF (L) is finite, then show that n divides l.

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Exact Sequences of Ring Modules

Definition 3.1. Let A, B, and C be modules over a ring R. We say that a pair of R-module
f
g
homomorphisms A B C is exact if im(f ) = ker(g). Let J be an interval of Z. For
every j J, an R-module Aj is provided. For an arbitrary sequence of module homomorphisms
fj2

fj1

fj

fj+1

. . . Aj1 Aj Aj+1 . . . is said to be exact if any pair of adjacent homomorphisms is


exact. A short exact sequence of R-modules is an exact sequence of the form 0 A B C 0,
where A, B, and C are R-modules
Example 3.2. Let R be a ring.
f

(1) For R-modules A, B, and C, if A B C is exact, then g f = 0.


f

(2) For R-modules A and B, 0 A B is exact if and only if f is an R-module monomorphism.


f
On the other hand, A B 0 is exact if and only if f is an R-module epimorphism.

(3) For R-modules A and B, 0 A A B B 0 is a short exact sequence, where


and are the canonical injection and the canonical projection, respectively.

(4) For R-modules A and B such that A B, 0 A B B/A 0 is a short exact


sequence, where is the inclusion map and is the quotient map.
(5) Let f : A B be a homomorphism of R-modules A and B. Then, we have three exact

sequences 0 ker(f ) A  coim(f ) 0, 0 im(f ) B  coker(f ) 0, and

0 ker(f ) A B  coker(f ) 0. The double-headed arrows denote the quotient


maps.
Exercise 3.3. Let n N0 and F a field. Suppose that 0 V0 V1 V2 . . . Vn 0 is an
exact sequence of finite-dimensional F -vector spaces. Prove that

n
X

(1)i dimF (Vi ) = 0.

i=0

Definition 3.4 (Commutative Diagrams). Let R be a ring. A commutative diagrams of R-modules


is a collection of maps {i,j : Ai Aj | (i, j) S}, where Ai is an R-module for every i in an index
set J and S J J, such that, whenever one can form two sequences
i

,i

,j

,i

,i

im2 ,im1

im1 ,im

jn2 ,jn1

jn1 ,jn

1
2
3
Ai0 0
Ai1 1
Ai2 2
. . . Aim1 Aim

(11)

and
,j

,j

1
2
3
Aj0 0
Aj1 1
Aj2 2
. . . Ajn1 Ajn ,

(12)

where m, n N0 , i0 = j0 , and im = jn , the following equality holds:


im1 ,im im2 ,im1 i1 ,i2 i0 ,i1 = jn1 ,jn jn2 ,jn1 j1 ,j2 j0 ,j1 .

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Exercise 3.5 (The Four Lemma). Let R be a ring. The following commutative diagram of Rmodules is provided:
A

(14)

,
D

where the rows are exact.


(a) If is epic, while and are monic, then show that is monic.
(b) If is monic, while and are epic, then show that is epic.
Theorem 3.6 (The Five Lemma). Let R be a ring. The following commutative diagram of Rmodules is provided:
A
B
C
D
E

(15)

E ,

where the rows are exact.


(a) If is epic, whilst and are monic, then is monic.
(b) If  is monic, whilst and are epic, then is epic.
(c) If is epic, and are iso, and  is monic, then is iso.
Corollary 3.7 (The Short Five Lemma). Let R be a ring. The following commutative diagram
of R-modules is provided:
0

0
(16)

0,

where the rows are exact. Such a triplet (, , ) of R-module homomorphisms is called a homomorphism of short exact sequences of R-modules.
(a) If and are monic, then is monic. In this case, (, , ) is a monomorphism of short exact
sequences of R-modules.
(b) If and are epic, then is epic. In this case, (, , ) is an epimorphism of short exact
sequences of R-modules.
(c) If and are iso, then is iso. In this case, (, , ) is an isomorphism of short exact sequences
of R-modules.

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Definition 3.8 (Category of Short Exact Sequences). Let R be a ring. The class SES(R) of all short
exact sequences of R-modules together with homomorphisms of short exact sequence of R-modules
form a category. Note that SES(R) is a nonconcrete category. The definitions of monomorphisms,
epimorphisms, and isomorphisms coincide with the definitions given in the corollary above. If there
is an isomorphism between two short exact sequences, then we say that the two exact sequences are
isomorphic.
f

Theorem 3.9 (The Splitting Lemma). Let R be a ring and 0 A


B
C 0 a short exact
sequence of R-modules. The following conditions are equivalent:
(i) There is a retract r : B A of f , namely, an R-module homomorphism r : B A such that
r f = idA ;
(ii) There is a section s : C B of g, namely, an R-module homomorphism s : C B such that
g s = idC ; and
f

(iii) The short exact sequence 0 A


B
C 0 is isomorphic to the direct-sum short exact
prC
inA
sequence 0 A A C C 0.
If the short exact sequence 0 A B C 0 satisfies any of the conditions above, we say that
0 A B C 0 splits.
Proof:


[(i)(iii)] Let : B A C be the map (b) := r(b), g(b) for every b B. Then, clearly, is an
R-module homomorphism. We have the commutative diagram
0

idA

AC

(17)

idC
prC

0,

where we then use the Short Five Lemma to verify that is an isomorphism.
[(ii)(iii)] Let : A C B be the map (a, c) := f (a) + s(c) for every a A and c C. Then,
clearly, is an R-module homomorphism. We have the commutative diagram
0

AC

idA

prC

0
(18)

idC

0,

where we then use the Short Five Lemma to verify that is an isomorphism.
[(iii)(i)] Suppose that we have the commutative diagram
0

inA

AC

prC

prA

B
15

0
(19)

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Algebra (Spring 2015)

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where , , and are isomorphisms of R-modules. The map r := prA 1 is a required


retract of f .
[(iii)(ii)] Suppose that we have the commutative diagram
A

inA

AC

inC

prC

0
(20)

0,

where , , and are isomorphisms of R-modules. The map s := inC 1 is a required


section of g.
Q.E.D.
Corollary 3.10. Let R be a ring. Suppose 0 A B C 0 is a splitting short exact
sequence of R-modules. Then, B  A C.
Corollary 3.11. Let R be a ring. An R-module M is decomposable if and only if there exists a

nonzero proper submodule N of M such that the short exact sequence 0 N


M  M/N 0,
where the two-headed arrow indicates the quotient map, is nonsplitting.
Example 3.12.
n

(1) Let n N with n > 1. The short exact sequence 0 Z Z  Z/nZ 0 of abelian groups
does not split, whence Z is an indecomposable Z-module.
(2) Let F be a field. Any short exact sequence 0 U V W 0 of F -vector spaces is
splitting.
p

N
(3) The short exact

(Z/2Z)N 0 of abelian groups does not


 sequence 0 Z
 Z (Z/2Z)

split if i(x) := 2 x, (2Z, 2Z, 2Z, . . .) and p x, (y1 , y2 , y3 , . . .) := (x + 2Z, y1 , y2 , y3 , . . .) for every

x Z and y1 , y2 , y3 , . . . Z/2Z.
Exercise 3.13. Let m, n N. If m and n are relatively prime, then prove that any short exact
sequence 0 Z/mZ A Z/nZ 0 of abelian groups always splits. If m and n are not relatively
prime, then show that there exists a nonsplitting exact sequence 0 Z/mZ Z/mnZ Z/nZ 0
of abelian groups.

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Free Modules over a Ring

Definition 4.1 (Linear Independence). Let R be a ring. For a subset X of an R-module M , an


R-linear combination is a finite sum of the form

n
X

ri xi , where n N, r1 , r2 , . . . , rn R, and

i=1

x1 , x2 , . . . , xn X. A subset X of an R-module M is said to be R-linearly independent provided


that, for mutually distinct elements x1 , x2 , . . . , xn X and for r1 , r2 , . . . , rn R, where n N0 , the
equality

n
X

rj xj = 0M implies that rj = 0M holds for every j = 1, 2, . . . , n. If M is generated as

j=1

an R-module by a subset Y M , then we say that Y spans M over R. An R-linearly independent


subset of M that spans M over R is called an R-basis of M .
Remark 4.2.
(1) If R is a unital ring and M is a unitary R-module, then a subset Y of M spans M over R if and
only if every element of M is an R-linear combination

n
X

ri yi for some n N0 , r1 , r2 , . . . , rn R,

i=1

and y1 , y2 , . . . , yn Y .

(2) For any ring R, the empty set is R-linearly independent and it is the sole basis of the zero
R-module.
(3) A subset X of a module M over a ring R is said to be R-linearly dependent if there exist n N,
pairwise distinct elements x1 , x2 , . . . , xn X, and r1 , r2 , . . . , rn R such that ri , 0 for some
i {1, 2, . . . , n} and that

n
X

ri xi = 0M .

i=1

Definition 4.3 (Free Modules). Let R be a ring. For a set X, we say that an R-module F is free
on X if it is a free object on X in Mod(R). That is, F is a free R-module on a set X if and only if
there exists a function : X F such that, for any R-module M and for each function f : X M ,
there is a unique R-module homomorphism f : F M with f = f . An R-module F is a free
R-module if and only if it is a free object in Mod(R).
Let R be a unital ring. For a set X, we say that a unitary R-module F is free on X if it is a
free object on X in UMod(R). That is, F is a unitarily free R-module on a set X if and only if
there exists a function : X F such that, for any unitary R-module M and for each function
f : X M , there is a unique R-module homomorphism f : F M with f = f . An R-module
F is a unitarily free R-module if and only if it is a free object in UMod(R).
Exercise 4.4. For a ring R, show that R is not a free object in Mod(R).
Theorem 4.5 (Existence of Free Modules). Let R be a ring. The following results hold whether C
is Mod(R) or, if R is unital, C is UMod(R).
(a) The zero object of C is free on .
(b) If J is an index set and, for each j J, Fj is a free objects in C on a set Xj , then

M
jJ

free object on the disjoint union

Xj .

jJ

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(c) Let F be a free object on a singleton of C. If R is unital and C is UMod(R), then F  R as


a unitary R-module. If R is unital and C is Mod(R), then F  Z R, where Z is taken to be
a trivial R-module. If R is nonunital and C is Mod(R), then F  S, where the abelian group
S := Z R is the unital closure of R, and S has an R-module structure via the embedding
def
R S sending r 7 (0, r) for every r R (that is, r (k, r) == (0, r) (k, r) for every k Z and
r, r R).
(d) For any set X, there is a free object on X in C, which is unique up to isomorphisms.
(e) Let F be a free object on a singleton of C. For an arbitrary set X, the free object on X in C
def M
is (isomorphic to) F |X| ==
F . Hence, a free object on a set X in C depends only on the
xX

cardinality of X.
Proof:
(a) This part is obvious.
G
Xj and
(b) Suppose that j : Xj Fj satisfies the free-object condition. Let X :=
jJ

:=

j . We claim that F together with forms a free object on X. Let M be

jJ

an arbitrary G
object with a function f : X M . Write ini for the canonical injection
ini : Xi
Xj , for each i J. We have a function f ini : Xi M , for every
jJ

i J. For each i J, because Fi together with i is free on Xi , we conclude that there


exists uniquely an R-module
homomorphism fi : Fi M . Ergo, we have an R-module
M
M
Fi M which satisfies f = f . It is clear that f is
fi :
homomorphism f :=
iJ

iJ

unique.
(c) Suppose that X = {t}. If R is unital and C is UMod(R), we can take F := R and
: X R to be the map sending t to 1R . For any unitary R-module M with a function
f : X M , we let f : R M to be the map f(r) := r f (t) for every r R. Obviously,
f is the unique R-module homomorphism such that f = f .
If R is unital and C is Mod(R), we take F := Z R, where Z is taken to be a trivial
R-module, and : X F to be the map (t) := (1, 1R ). If M is an R-module, we can
write M = N L, where N M is a trivial R-module and L M is a unitary R-module.
For a given function f : X M , we write f (t) =n + l,where n N and l L. Define
an R-module homomorphism f : F M to be f (k, r) := k n + r l for all k Z and
r R. Ergo, f is the unique required map.
Finally, if R is nonunital and C is Mod(R), we take F := S and : X S to be the map

(t) :=
 1S = (1, 0R ). For an R-module M with a function f : X M , define f : F M
via f (k, r) := k f (t) + r f (t) for all k Z and r R. Hence, f is the only map with
the desired property.
(d) This part follows from Part (b) and Part (c) immediately.
(e) This part follows from Part (c) and Part (d) easily.
Q.E.D.
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Corollary 4.6. Let R be a ring and S its unital closure. Then, an R-module is a free object in
Mod(R) if and only if it is a free object in UMod(S).
Exercise 4.7. Let R be an arbitrary ring. If R is either of characteristic p N or with multiplicative identity, then show that, for any cardinal number c, there exist a set X with cardinality c
and an R-module M such that X is an R-basis of M , but M is not a free R-module. Now, if R is
a nonunital ring of characteristic 0, then prove that R-module with a basis is free if and only if R
contains no element s for which there exists n N such that r s = n r for every r R. Finally, if n
is an integer with n > 1, give an example of an (nZ)-module which has a basis but is not free.
Theorem 4.8. Let R be a unital ring and F a unitary R-module. The following conditions are
equivalent:
(i) F is a free object in UMod(R);
(ii) There exists a set X and a function : X F with the property that, given any unitary
R-module M and a function f : X M , there exists a unique R-module homomorphism
f : F M such that f = f .
(iii) F has a basis;
(iv) F is the internal direct sum of a family of cyclic R-submodules, each of which is isomorphic to
R as a unitary R-module; and
(v) F is isomorphic as an R-module to a direct sum of copies of the unitary R-module R.
Theorem 4.9. Let R be a ring. The category C is either Mod(R) or UMod(R) (if R is unital).
Then, every object M in C is a homomorphic image of a free object F in C. If M is finitely generated,
then we may take F to be finitely generated as well.
Remark 4.10.
(1) Let R be a ring. The category C is either Mod(R) or UMod(R) (if R is unital). Let F , together
with a function : X F , be a free object in C on a set X. Then, (X) is an R-basis of F .
(2) A submodule of a free module over an arbitrary ring need not be free. Likewise, a submodule of
a unitarily free module over an arbitrary unital ring need not be free. For example, if R = Z/6Z,
then R is a unitarily free R-module, but its R-submodule 2R is not free.
(3) For an arbitrary unital R-module, a unitarily free module F may have bases of different cardinalities. Take for example, R := HomK (F, F ), where K is a unital ring and F is a unitarily free
K-module with an infinitely countable basis {e1 , e2 , e3 , . . .}. It turns out that as, for any n N,
R is isomorphic to Rn as a unitary R-module.
Exercise 4.11. Let R be a ring and M an R-module. Let C be a subcategory of Mod(R).
A left resolution, or a resolution, of M in C is an exact sequence of objects in C of the form
. . . E2 E1 E0 M 0. Prove that, if C is Mod(R) itself, then there exists a free
resolution of M , i.e., a resolution . . . F2 F1 F0 M 0, where Fk is a free R-module for
all k = 0, 1, 2, . . .. Prove also that, if R is unital, M is unitary, and C is UMod(R) itself, then there
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exists a unitarily free resolution of M , i.e., a resolution . . . F2 F1 F0 M 0, where Fk is


a unitarily free R-module for all k = 0, 1, 2, . . .. For example, there exists a unitarily free resolution
in UMod(Z) of Z/nZ, where n N, of the form . . . 0 0 Z Z Z/nZ 0.
Proposition 4.12. Let R be a ring and 0 M N F 0 a short exact sequence of Rmodules. If F is free, then the sequence splits. If R is unital, F is unitarily free, and M and N are
unitary R-modules, then the sequence splits.
Proof: We shall work both cases simultaneously. Let be the given map N F . Suppose F is
(unitarily) free on a set X, with : X F . Define f : X N by assigning each x X with
an element ax N such that (ax ) = (x). By the universal property of free objects, there exists
(uniquely) an R-module homomorphism f : F N such that f = f .




Now, for x X, f




(x) =

f (x) = f (x) = (ax ) = (x) = (idF ) (x). Thus,

f = idF By the uniqueness of such a map, f = idF , so we have a section of .


Thence, the given short exact sequence splits.
Q.E.D.

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The Invariant Dimension Property

Theorem 5.1. Let R be a unital ring and F a unitarily free R-module with an infinite basis X.
Then, every basis of F has the same cardinality as X.
Proof: Suppose that Y is another basis of F . Firstly, we claim that Y is infinite. If Y were finite,
there would exist a finite subset Z of X such that every element of Y is a linear combination of
elements of Z, whence F would be generated by a proper subset Z of X, which would contradict
the hypothesis that X is a basis of F .
Let K(Y ) be the set of all finite subsets of Y . Define a map f : X K(Y ) by x 7 {y1 , y2 , . . . , yn },
where x X can be written as

n
X

ri yi for some n N, where r1 , r2 , . . . , rn R \ {0R } and

i=1

y1 , y2 , . . . , y[
n Y . Since Y is a basis, f is well defined. Furthermore, im(f ) = f (X) is infinite
because
V is a subset of Y that generates X, whence also F .
V im(f )

Next, we shall verify that the preimage f 1 (T ) is a finite subset of X for each T im(f ) K(Y ).
Let FT be the R-submodule of F generated by T . Since T is finite, there is a finite subset S of X
such that FT is contained in the R-submodule FS of F generated by S. If x f 1 (T ), then x is
contained in FT . That is, x f 1 (T ) implies that x FS , whence x is an R-linear combination of
elements of S. Because X is R-linearly independent, x X, S X, and x FS , it follows that
x S. Therefore, f 1 (T ) S, making f 1 (T ) finite.
For each T im(f ), order the elements of f 1 (T ), say x1 , x2 , . . . , xn , for some n N, and define an
injective map gT : f 1 (T ) im(f ) N by xk 7 (T, k) for k = 1, 2, . . . , n. Since sets of the form
f 1 (T ), where T im(f ), form a partition of X, we conclude that the map g : X im(f ) N
defined by x 7 gT (x) if x f 1 (T ) is a well defined injection. Therefore,

|X| im(f ) N = im(f ) |N| = im(f ) K(Y ) .


We now need to verify that





K(Y )

= |Y |. However, K(Y ) =

[
kN

Y
, where
k

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V
c

is the set of

Y
clearly has the same cardinality as Y for all
all subsets of cardinality c of a set V . Because
k
G
k N, we conclude that there is a bijection from K(Y ) to
Y , which has the same cardinality
kN

as Y N. We then have |X|





K(Y )

= |Y N| = |Y | |N| = |Y |.

Using the same argument, we can show that |Y | |X|. The Schroeder-Bernstein Theorem guarantees that |Y | = |X|.
Q.E.D.
Corollary 5.2. Let R be a unital ring and F a free R-module with an infinite basis X. Then,
every basis of F has the same cardinality as X.
Definition 5.3 (Invariant Dimension Property). Let R be a ring such that, for every free R-module
F , any two bases of F have the same cardinality. Then, R is said to have the invariant dimension
property for left R-modules and the cardinal number of any basis of a free R-module F is called the
21

Algebra (Spring 2015)

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dimension or rank of F over R, which is denoted by dimR (F ) or rkR (F ). We can similarly define the
invariant dimension property for right R-modules.
Let R be a unital ring such that, for every unitarily free R-module F , any two bases of F have
the same cardinality. Then, R is said to have the invariant dimension property for unitary left Rmodules and the cardinal number of any basis of a unitarily free R-module F is called the dimension
or rank of F over R, which is denoted by dimR (F ) or rkR (F ). We can similarly define the invariant
dimension property for unitary right R-modules.
Theorem 5.4. Let R be a ring and S its unital closure. Then, R has the invariant dimension
property for its left modules if and only if S has the invariant dimension property for its unitary left
modules. Similarly, R has the invariant dimension property for its right modules if and only if S has
the invariant dimension property for its unitary right modules.
Theorem 5.5. A unital ring has the invariant dimension property for its unitary left modules if and
only if it has the invariant dimension property for its unitary right modules. Hence, it is safe just to
say that a unital ring has the invariant dimension property for unitary modules, or has the invariant
basis number, without specifying whether the property is with repect to left or right modules.
Proof: We can ignore unitarily free modules on infinite bases due to the previous theorem. Then,
we can rephrase the definition of the invariant dimension property in both cases in the following
reformulation:
A unital ring R has the invariant dimension property if and only if whenever A is an
m-by-n matrix over R and B is an n-by-m matrix over R, where m, n N0 , such that
A B = Imm and B A = Inn , where Ikk is the k-by-k identity matrix over R for
every k N0 , we must have m = n.
Since this definition is left-right symmetric, the claim follows.

Q.E.D.

Corollary 5.6. A ring has the invariant dimension property for its left modules if and only if it
has the invariant dimension property for its right modules. Hence, it is safe just to say that a unital
ring has the invariant dimension property without specifying whether the property is with repect to
left or right modules.
Proposition 5.7. Let R be a unital ring. The following conditions are equivalent:
(i) The ring R has the invariant basis number;
(ii) If F is a unitarily free R-module with two finite bases X and Y , then |X| = |Y |; and
(iii) For m, n N0 , Rm  Rn as R-modules if and only if m = n.
Example 5.8. Every finite unital ring has the invariant basis number.
Exercise 5.9. Let R be a unital ring. Prove that R has the invariant basis number if either of
the following conditions hold:
(i) All finitely generated unital subrings of R have the invariant basis number; or
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(ii) There is a unital subring S of R with the invariant basis number such that R is a finitely
generated unitarily free S-module.
Proposition 5.10. Let F1 and F2 be unitarily free modules over a unital ring R with the invariant
basis number. Then, F1  F2 as unitary R-modules if and only if dimR (F1 ) = dimR (F2 ).
Lemma 5.11. Let R be a unital ring, I a proper two-sided ideal of R, F a unitarily free R-module
with
basis X, and : F F/(I F ) the canonical projection
(
) (where I F is the R-submodule
n
X

ri ai | n N0 , r1 , r2 , . . . , rn I , and a1 , a2 , . . . , an F

of F ). Then, F/(I F ) is a unitarily

i=1

free (R/I)-module with basis (X) and





(X)

= |X|, where the (R/I)-action on F/(I F ) is given

def

by (r + I) (a + I F ) == r a + I F for every r R and a F .


Proof of Lemma: For each u F , u =

n
X

ri xi for some n N0 , r1 , r2 , . . . , rn R, and

i=1

x1 , x2 , . . . , xn X. That is,
u+I F =
=

n
X

ri xi + I F =

n
X

(ri xi + I F )

i=1

i=1
n
X

(ri + I) (xi + I F ) =

n
X

(ri + I) (xi ) .

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i=1

i=1

Ergo, (X) generates F/(I F ) as a unitary (R/I)-module.


We now need to show that (X) is an (R/I)-linearly independent set. Suppose that we have
m
X

(sj + I) (yj ) = I F for some m N, elements s1 , s2 , . . . , sm R, and pairwise distinct

j=1

y1 , y2 , . . . , ym X. We must then have

m
X

sj yj + I F =

(sj + I) (yj + I F ) =

m
X
j=1

sj yj I F , whence

m
X

(sj + I) (yj ) = I F .

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j=1

j=1

j=1

Consequently,

m
X

m
X
j=1

sj yj =

l
X

tk zk for some l N0 , elements

k=1

t1 , t2 , . . . , tl I, and pairwise distinct z1 , z2 , . . . , zl X. The R-linear independence of X implies


that m = l, and, up to reordering, sj = tj and yj = zj for j = 1, 2, . . . , m. Thus, sj + I = I for
every j = 1, 2, . . . , m, so (X) is indeed an (R/I)-linearly independent set.
Now, it is easily seen that |X : X F/(I F ) is an injective mapping. Because it is also
surjective
onto its image (X), we conclude that |X : X (X) is bijective, implying that




(X) = |X|.
#
Exercise 5.12. Let R be a unital ring satisfying the invariant basis number. For a unitarily free
R-module F of infinite rank and for a cardinal number , 0 < , show that F has infinitely
many proper unitarily free R-submodules of rank .
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Proposition 5.13. Let R and S be unital rings and f : R S a nonzero ring epimorphism. If S
has the invariant basis number, then so does R.
Proof: Let I := ker(f ); then, I is a proper two-sided ideal of R and S  R/I. Suppose that F is
a unitarily free R-module with bases X and Y . Let : F (I F ) be the quotient map. By the
previous lemma, F/(I F ) is a unitarily
free (R/I)-module
(hence, a free S-module) with bases







(X) and (Y ). Since |X| = (X) , |Y | = (Y ) , and R/I  S has the invariant dimension

property, we have that (X) = (Y ) . That is, |X| = |Y |. Thence, R also satisfies the invariant
dimension property.
Q.E.D.
Corollary 5.14. If R is a unital ring that has a homomorphic image which is a division ring, then
R has the invariant basis number.
Proof of Corollary: This follows immediately from the fact (to be given in the next section)
that every division ring has the invariant dimension property.
#
Corollary 5.15. Every commutative unital ring has the invariant basis number.
Proof of Corollary: Let R be a commutative unital ring. Then, R has a maximal ideal I.
Since R/I is a field, whence a division ring, this cororally follows immediately from the previous
one.
#
Exercise 5.16. Let R be a ring without zero divisors (i.e., R has neither left zero divisors nor right
zero divisors) such that, for all r, s R, there exist a, b R, not both zero, such that a r + b s = 0R .
Prove that R, as an R-module, is indecomposable. If R is unital, prove that R has the invariant
basis number.
Theorem 5.17. Let F1 and F2 be unitarily free modules over a unital ring R with the invariant
basis number. Then, rkR (F1 F2 ) = rk (F1 ) + rkR (F2 ).
Corollary 5.18. Let F1 and F2 be unitarily free modules over a unital ring R with the invariant
basis number. If there exists a short exact sequence 0 F1 E F2 0, where E is an
R-module, then E is a unitarily free R-module, E  F1 F2 , and rkR (E) = rkR (F1 ) + rkR (F2 ).

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Vector Spaces over Division Rings

Theorem 6.1. Let D be a division ring and V a D-vector space. For any D-linearly independent
subset X of V and for any spanning subset Y of V over D such that X Y , there exists a D-basis
B of V with X B Y .
Proof: Let I be the set of D-linearly independent subsets of Y that contains X. Note that X I,
whence I is nonempty.
Order elements of I by inclusion. Let C be a nonempty chain in I. We
[
claim that C :=
S is an element of I (so that every nonempty chain in I has an upper bound in
SC

I). However, it is clear that C is D-linearly independent and X C Y . Hence, the hypothesis
of Zorns Lemma is satisfied for the partially ordered set (I, ). That is, I has a maximal element
B, which is what we desire.
Q.E.D.
Corollary 6.2. Let D be a division ring and V a D-vector space. Then, any D-linearly independent subset X of V can be extended to a D-basis B of V .
Corollary 6.3. Let D be a division ring and V a D-vector space. Then, any D-spanning subset
Y of V contains a D-basis B of V .
Corollary 6.4. Let D be a division ring. Then, every vector space over D has a D-basis.
Corollary 6.5. Every vector space over a division ring D is a unitarily free D-module.
Corollary 6.6. Let D be a division ring. Any D-submodule of a D-vector space is a D-vector
space, whence a unitarily free D-module.
Exercise 6.7. Let G be a nontrivial group that is not cyclic of order 2. Prove that G has a
nonidentity group automorphism.
Theorem 6.8. Let D be a unital ring. Then, D is a division ring if and only if every unitary
D-module is unitarily free.
Proof: The direct implication is given in a corollary above. We shall prove the converse. Suppose
that every unitary D-module is unitarily free, but D is not a division ring. We claim that D has
a maximal left ideal L which is nontrivial. As D is not a division ring, there is a nonzero element
u D which is not invertible. That is, D u is a nontrivial proper left ideal of D. Hence, the set
L of all nontrivial proper left ideals
of D is nonempty. Order L by inclusion. For any nonempty
[
chain C in L, we see that C :=
I is a nontrivial left ideal of D. Furthermore, C is a proper left
IC

ideal since 1D < I forall I C. Therefore, every nonempty chain in L has an upper bound, so L
has a maximal element L, which is what we claim.

Consider the short exact sequence of D-modules: 0 L


D
D/L 0, where is the inclusion
map and is the quotient map. Because D/L is a unitarily free module, the short exact sequence
splits, therefore D is isomorphic to L (D/L) as D-modules.
Now, as D/L is free, it has a D-basis. Take x to be an element of a D-basis of D/L. Observe that
D/L is a simple D-module, hence it is generated by any nonzero element. This means D/L = Dx.
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Algebra (Spring 2015)

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However, because x is a basis element, Dx  D as a unitary D-module. Thence, D/L is isomorphic


to D as a D-module. That is, as a D-module, D is simple. However, as D  L (D/L), we see
that D has a proper nonzero D-submodule, which is a contradiction. Hence, D must be a division
ring.
Q.E.D.
Theorem 6.9. Every division ring has the invariant basis number.
Proof: Let D be a division ring and V a D-vector space. Take two bases X and Y of V . We can
assume that both X and Y are finite, say X = {x1 , x2 , . . . , xm } and Y = {y1 , y2 , . . . , yn }, where
m, n N0 , x1 , x2 , . . . , xm V , and y1 , y2 , . . . , yn D. Without loss of generality, we assume that
m n. Since X and Y are bases, we get 0V , y1 =

m
X

di xi for some d1 , d2 , . . . , dm D. If k is

i=1

the smallest positive integer such that dk , 0D , then xk =

d1
k

y1

m

X

d1
k di xi . That is,

i=k+1

the set X1 := {y1 } {xi | i S1 }, with S1 := {1, 2, . . . , m} \ {k} is a D-spanning set of V .


Now, suppose the D-spanning set Xj = {y1 , y2 , . . . , yj } {xi | i Sj } and Sj {1, 2, . . . , m} are
given, where j N, j < m, |Sj | = m j. We must have yj+1 =

j
X

s y +

=1

t x for

Sj

some s , t D, where = 1, 2, . . . , j and Sj . Let be the smallest element of Sj such


that t , 0D (which must exist, otherwise yj+1 would be a D-linear combination of y1 , y2 , . . . , yj ,
contradicting the assumption that Y is a D-basis). Define Sj+1 := Sj \ {} {1, 2, . . . , m} and
Xj+1 := {y1 , y2 , . . . , yj+1 } {xi | i Sj+1 }. Clearly, |Sj+1 | = m (j + 1) and Xj+1 spans V over D.
Finally, the process above yields the set Xm = {y1 , y2 , . . . , ym } (as Sm = ), which spans V . As Y
is a base and Xm Y , we must have Xm = Y , whence m = n, as desired.
Q.E.D.
Definition 6.10. The dimension of a vector space V over a division ring D is denoted by dimD (V ),
which is the cardinality of a D-basis of V . If dimD (V ) is finite, then we say that V is finitedimensional; otherwise, V is infinite-dimensional.
Exercise 6.11 (Odd-Even Town Problem). A town has n residents, where n N0 . A club is a
set of residents in this town. Clubs in this town must satisfy the following conditions:
(i) Every club must have an odd number of members; and
(ii) Any two different clubs must share an even number of members.
Prove that there can be at most n clubs in this town. Give an example where there are exactly n
clubs.
Theorem 6.12. Let D be a division ring, and V and W D-vector spaces with V W .
(a) We have the inequality dimD (V ) dimD (W ).
(b) If dimD (V ) = dimD (W ) and V is finite-dimensional over D, then V = W .
(c) We have the equality dimD (V ) = dimD (W ) + dimD (V /W ).
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Algebra (Spring 2015)

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Proof: Parts (a) and (b) are easy. We shall prove Part (c). Let X and Y be D-bases of V and
W , respectively, such that X Y . Let x1 , x2 , . . . , xk be mutually distinct elements of X \ Y . We
shall prove that x1 + W, x2 + W, . . . , xk + W are D-linearly independent elements
of V /W . Suppose
!
that

k
X

di (xi + W ) = W for some d1 , d2 , . . . , dk D. Then,

i=1
k
X

k
X

di xi + W = W , making

i=1

di xi W . Because the xi s are not in Y , we then have d1 = d2 = . . . = dk = 0D .

i=1

Let be the quotient map : V V /W . From the result above, |X\Y


: X \Y V /W is injective.
If we show that (X\Y ) spans V /W , then we see that dimD (V /W ) = (X\Y ) = |X\Y |. However,
this is clear since X spans V . Thence, dimD (V ) = |X| = |Y | + |X \ Y | = dimD (W ) + dimD (V /W ),
as desired.
Q.E.D.
Corollary 6.13. Let D be a division ring, and V and W vector spaces over D. If f : V W is
a D-linear transformation,
then there exists
a D-basis X of V such that X ker(f ) is a D-basis of
n
o
ker(f ) and f (x) | f (x) , 0 and x X is a basis of im(f ). In particular,


dimD (V ) = dimD ker(f ) + dimD im(f ) .

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Proof of Corollary: Let W := ker(f ). Let Y be a D-basis of W and X a D-basis of V W


containing Y . Then, X has the desired property. Also, as V /W = V / ker(f )  im(f ), we have
the desired equality relating dimensions of V , ker(f ), and im(f ).
#
Theorem 6.14. Let D be a division ring. If V and W are D-vector subspaces of a D-vector space,
then
dimD (V ) + dimD (W ) = dimD (V W ) + dimD (V + W ) .

(25)

Proof: Let X be a D-basis of V W , Y a basis of V containing X, and Z a basis of W containing


X. Then, X (Y \ X) (Z \ X) is a D-basis of V + W , where X, Y \ X, and Z \ X are pairwise
disjoint. Consequently,


dimD (V + W ) + dimD (V W ) = |X| + |Y \ X| + |Z \ X| + |X|




= |X| + |Y \ X| + |Z \ X| + |X|

= |Y | + |Z| = dimD (V ) + dimD (W ) .

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Q.E.D.

Theorem 6.15. Let R, S, and T be division rings such that R S T . Then,


dimR (T ) = (dimS (T )) (dimR (S)) .
Furthermore, dimR (T ) is finite if and only if both dimS (T ) and dimR (S) are finite.

27

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Algebra (Spring 2015)

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Proof: Let U be a basis of T over S, and let V be a basis of S over R. Then, the cardinality of
the set W := {v u | u U and v V } is |U | |V |, as the elements of the form v u, where u U
and v V are pairwise distinct, due to the S-linear independence of U . We need to verify that W
is indeed an R-basis of T .
Let t T . Then, there exist m N0 , u1 , u2 , . . . , um U , and s1 , s2 , . . . , sm S such that
t =

m
X

si ui . The si s can be written as R-linear combinations of v1 , v2 , . . . , vn V for some

i=1

n N0 . That is, for i = 1, 2, . . . , m, there are ri,j R for j = 1, 2, . . . , n such that

n
X

ri,j vj = si .

j=1

Hence, t =

m
X

n
X

i=1

ri,j vj ui =

j=1

m X
n
X

ri,j (vj ui ). Hence, W spans T over R.

i=1 j=1

For m, n N, take pairwise distinct u1 , u2 , . . . , um U and pairwise distinct v1 , v2 , . . . , vn


V . Suppose that there exists ri,j R, where
. . . , m and j = 1, 2, . . . , n, such that
i = 1, 2,
n
m X
X

ri,j (vj ui ) = 0T . Then, 0T =

we have

i=1

i=1 j=1
n
X
j=1

ri,j vj =

n
X

n
X

m
X

ri,j vj ui . By S-linear independence of U ,

j=1

ri,j vj = 0S for every i = 1, 2, . . . , m. By R-linear independence of V ,

j=1

ri,j = 0R for every i = 1, 2, . . . , m and j = 1, 2, . . . , n. Ergo, W is R-linearly independent. Q.E.D.


Exercise 6.16. What are all possible fields K such that Q ( K ( Q

28

i
h
4

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Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Projective Modules

Definition 7.1 (Projective Modules). Let R be a ring, and C either Mod(R) or, if R is unital,
UMod(R). An object P in C is said to be projective if, for any epimorphism f : A B of
objects A and B in C and for any R-module homomorphism g : P B, there exists an R-module
homomorphism h : P A such that f h = g. In other words, P is projective if and only if, for any
diagram
P

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of R-module homomorphisms in C, there is an R-module homomorphism h : P A such that the


diagram
P
h

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is commutative. We shall use the term projective R-modules for projective objects in Mod(R), and
the term unitarily projective R-modules for projective objects in UMod(R), if R is unital.
Theorem 7.2. Let R be a ring and S := Z R the unital closure of R. Then, an R-module P is
projective in Mod(R) if and only if it is projective in UMod(S).
Theorem 7.3. Every free module F over a ring R is projective. If R is unital, every unitarily free
R-module is unitarily projective.
Proof: Suppose that F is (unitarily) free on a set X, with : X F . A diagram of homomorphisms of (unitary) R-module
F

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is given. For each x X, define (x) to be an element ax A such that f (ax ) = (g )(x) (which
always exists as f is surjective). Thus, we have a map : X A. As F is (unitarily) free, there
exists a homomorphism h : F A of (unitary) R-modules such that h = .
Now, consider f h : F B. Note that (f h) = f (h ) = f = g . Thus, f h = g by
the uniqueness of such a map.
Q.E.D.
Corollary 7.4. Let R be a ring. Every R-module is a homomorphic image of a projective Rmodule. If R is unital, every unitary R-module is a homomorphic image of a unitarily projective
R-module.
Exercise 7.5. Let R be a ring, and C either Mod(R) or, if R is unital, UMod(R). For an object
M in C, we say that a resolution . . . P2 P1 P0 M 0, where P0 , P1 , P2 , . . . are objects
in C, is a projective resolution if each of the Pi s is projective in C. Prove that every object M in C
has a projective resolution (hence, C has enough projectives).
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Algebra (Spring 2015)

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Theorem 7.6. Let R be a ring, and C either Mod(R) or, if R is unital, UMod(R). The following
conditions on an object P of C are equivalent:
(i) The object P is projective in C;
(ii) Every short exact sequence 0 A B P 0 of objects in C splits; and
(iii) There is a free object F and an object K in C such that F  K P .
Proof:
f

[(i)(ii)] Suppose P is projective and 0 A


B
P 0 is provided. Consider the following
diagram
P

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idP

where the bottom row is exact. By projectivity of P , there exists s : P B such that
g s = idP . Thus, s is a section, and so the short exact sequence splits.
[(ii)(iii)] Suppose that (ii) holds. Since P is a homomorphic image of a free object F , there is an

epimorphism : F P . Ergo, we have the short exact sequence 0 K


F
P 0, if
K := ker(). Because this short exact sequence must split, F  K P .


[(iii)(i)] Let : F P be the composition of an isomorphism F


K P and the canonical projection
K P P . Also, let : P F be the composition of the canonical injetion P K P

with the inverse isomorphism K P
F of the previous isomorphism. A diagram
P

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of homomorphisms of objects in C, where the bottom row is exact, is provided. Consider the
diagram
F

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P
f

0.

Since F is projective, there is an R-module homomorphism : F A such that g = f .


Define h := . Then, g h = g ( ) = (g ) = (f ) = f ( ) = f idP = f .
That is, P is projective.
Q.E.D.
Corollary 7.7. Let R be a ring, and C either Mod(R) or, if R is unital, UMod(R). For a short
exact sequence 0 A B P 0 of objects in C, B  A P .
30

Algebra (Spring 2015)

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Exercise 7.8. Prove that Q is not a unitarily projective Z-module.


Theorem 7.9 (Dual Basis Lemma). Let R be a unital ring. Then, a unitary R-module P is unitarily
projective if and only if there are an index set J, a family (pj )jJ of elements of P , and a family
(fj )jJ of R-module homomorphisms in HomR (P, R) such that
(i) for every x P , the set {j J | fj (x) , 0R } is finite, and
(ii) for every x P , x =

fj (x) pj .

jJ

Proof: Suppose
M that P is a unitarily projective R-module. Then, there exists a unitarily free
module F =
R for some index set J such that P is a direct summand of F , with : F P
jJ

and : P F being the canonicalMprojection and the canonical injection, respectively. Let
pj := (aj ) for all j J. Now, F =
R with the projection prj : F R being the map giving
iJ

the component indexed by j for every j J. Define fj to be prj , and we are done.
Conversely, suppose
that the two conditions are satisfied by a unitary R-module
X P . It is clear
M
rj pj , where
that, if F :=
R is the unitarily free R-module on J, then the map (rj )jJ 7
jJ

jJ

(rj )jJ F is an epimorphism of F to P . However, the map x 7 (fj (x))jJ , for every x P ,
provides a section of this epimorphism, whence F = K P , for some unitary R-module K. Q.E.D.
Corollary 7.10. Let R be a ring and S := Z R its unital closure. Then, an R-module P is
projective if and only if there are an index set J, a family (pj )jJ of elements of P , and a family
(fj )jJ of R-module homomorphisms in HomR (P, S) such that
(i) for every x P , the set {j J | fj (x) , 0S } is finite, and
(ii) for every x P , x =

def

fj (x) pj , where (k, r) u == k u + r u for every k Z, r R, and

jJ

u P.
Example 7.11. If R is the unitary ring Z/6Z, then both Z/2Z and Z/3Z are unitary R-modules.
As there is an R-module isomorphism R  (Z/2Z) (Z/3Z), we conclude that both Z/2Z and Z/3Z
are projective, although both of them are not unitarily free.
Theorem 7.12. Let R be a ring, and C either Mod(R)
Mor, if R is unital, UMod(R). For an index
set J and j J, Pj is an object in C. The direct sum
Pj of R-modules is projective in C if and
jJ

only if, for every j J, Pj is a projective object of C.


Proof:
() Suppose that Pj is projective in C for every j J. Then,
there
for

exists,

every j J, an
M

object Kj of C such that Kj Pj is free in C. That is,

jJ

is free in C. That is,

Kj

jJ

Pj 

(Kj Pj )

jJ

Pj is a direct summand of a free object in C, whence it is projective.

jJ

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Algebra (Spring 2015)

() Suppose that

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Pj is projective. For i J, let i and i be the canonical injection Pi

jJ

Pj

jJ

and the canonical projection

Pj Pi , respectively. For a fixed k J, a diagram

jJ

Pk

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fk

be given, where the bottom row M


is exact. For j J \ {k}, M
define fj : Pj B to be the
zero map. Hence, we have f :
Pj B, where f :=
fj is the unique R-module
jJ

jJ

homomorphism such that f j = fj for every j J. Consequently, we have the diagram


M

Pj

jJ

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f

Since

0.

Pj is projective, there exists an R-module homomorphism h :

Pj A such that

jJ

jJ

g h = f . Now, consider the extended diagram


Pk
k

Pj

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jJ
f

0.

Hence, hk := h k : Pk A satisfies the condition that


g hk = g (h k ) = (g h) k = f k = fk .

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That is, Pk is projective. Since k is arbitrary, we are done.


Q.E.D.
Exercise 7.13. Let a1 , a2 , . . . , an , where n N, be elements of a unital ring R such that the
left ideal they generate is R itself. Define M to be the R-submodule of the unitary R-module Rn
consisting of all n-tuples (x1 , x2 , . . . , xn ) Rn such that

n
X
i=1

projective R-module.

32

xi ai = 0R . Prove that M is a unitarily

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Injective Modules

Definition 8.1 (Injective Modules). Let R be a ring, and C either Mod(R) or, if R is unital,
UMod(R). An object I in C is said to be injective if, for any monomorphism f : A B of
objects A and B in C and for any R-module homomorphism g : A I, there exists an R-module
homomorphism h : B I such that h f = g. In other words, I is injective in C if and only if, for
any diagram
f

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of R-module homomorphisms in C in which the top row is exact, there is an R-module homomorphism
h : B I such that the diagram
f

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g
h

is commutative. We shall use the term injective R-modules for injective objects in Mod(R), and the
term unitarily injective R-modules for injective objects in UMod(R), if R is unital.
Example 8.2. The zero module over any ring is injective. If the ring is unital, the zero module is
also unitarily injective.
Exercise 8.3. Properties of projective or unitarily projective modules do not usually have dual
forms for injective or unitarily injective modules. The problem therein is the lack of the duals of
free objects in the related categories. We shall show that such duals, i.e., cofree objects, do not exist
except for a single circumstance. Let now R be a ring, and C either Mod(R) or, if R is unital,
UMod(R).
An object K in C is said to be cofree on a set X if there is a function : K X such that, for
any R-module M and for each function f : M X, there exists a unique R-module homomorphism
f : M K such that f = f . Prove that, for a set X, there exists a cofree object in C on X if
and only if |X| = 1. Show that, if X is a singleton, then the only cofree object in C on X is the zero
module over R.
Theorem 8.4. Let R be a ring, and C either Mod(R) or,
Y if R is unital, UMod(R). For an index
set J and j J, Ij is an object in C. The direct product
Ij of R-modules is injective in C if and
jJ

only if, for every j J, Ij is an injective object of C.


Proof:
() Suppose that Ij is injective in C for every j J. Suppose we have a diagram
f

Y
jJ

33

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Ij

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

of R-module homomorphisms of objects in C in which the top row is exact. Let i :

Ij Ii

jJ

be the canonical projection, where i J. Hence, we have the diagram


f

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i g

Ii

and, by the injectivity condition, there exists, for each i J, an R-module homomorphism
hi : B Ii such that hi f = i g. By Y
the universal property of products, there exists
uniquely an R-module homomorphism h :=
hj such that i h = hi for every i J. That
jJ

is, h f : B

Ij is a map that satisfies i (h f ) = (i h) f = hi f = gi = i g

jJ

for every i J. Again, by the universality of categorical products regarding the uniqueness
of such maps, we conclude that h f = g.
() We can easily prove this direction by dualizing our proof for the dual statement for projective
modules.
Q.E.D.
Theorem 8.5. Let R be a ring and S := Z R the unital closure of R. Then, an R-module I is
injective in Mod(R) if and only if it is injective in UMod(S).
Theorem 8.6 (Baers Criterion). Let R be a unital ring. A unitary R-module I is unitarily injective
if and only if, for every left ideal L of R, any R-module homomorphism L I may be extended to
an R-module homomorphism R I.

Proof: Let : L I be an R-module homomorphism. Note that L


R is a monomorphism of
R-modules. If I is injective, then there must exist an R-module homomorphism : R I which
makes the diagram below commutative:
0

R.

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That is, extends .


Conversely, suppose that, for any left ideal L of R, any R-module homomorphism : L I can
be extended to : R I. Let A and B be unitary R-modules with an R-module monomorphism
f : A B and an R-module homomorphism g : A I.
Take S to be the set of all R-module homomorphism : M I, where M is a unitary R-module
such that im(f ) M B and that f = g. Note that S is nonempty since it contains

1
g f |im(f )
: im(f ) I. Partially order S by extension, i.e., for h1 , h2 S, we say that
h1  h2 if and only if the domain Dom (h1 ) of h1 is contained in the domain Dom (h2 ) of h2 , and
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Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

h2 |Dom(h1 ) = h1 . We can easily that the partially ordered set (S, ) satisfies the hypothesis of
Zorns Lemma. Hence, there exists a maximal element h : H I of S with h f = g. We shall
complete the proof by showing that H = B.
If H , B and b B \ H, then L := {r R | r b H} is a left ideal of R. Now, : L I
sending r L to h(r b) is a well defined R-module homomorphism. This map must then extends
: H + R b I which sends
to : R I, by the hypothesis on I. We shall now look at the map h
is a well defined
x + r b 7 h(x) + r (1R ), where x H and r R. It is easily seen that h
R-module homomorphism that is an element of S. This, however, contradicts the maximality of h
because b < H and so H ( H + R b. Therefore, H = B, whence I is injective.
Q.E.D.
Exercise 8.7. Let R be a unital ring. Show that a unitary R-module I is injective if and only if,
for every left ideal L of R and for any R-module homomorphism : L I, there exists m I such
that (r) = r m for every r L.
Theorem 8.8. Let I be a unitarily injective Z-module and R a unital ring. Then, HomZ (R, I) is a
unitarily injective R-module.
Proof: Recall that, for each f HomZ (R, I) and for r, x R, (r f )(x) = f (x r). Let L be
a left ideal of R with an R-module homomorphism : L HomZ (R, I). Define f : L I
by f (x) = (x) (1R ) for every x L. Note that f is a homomorphism of unitary Z-modules.
Therefore, we have the diagram
L

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of unitary Z-modules, where the top row is exact. As I is a unitarily injective Z-module, there
exists a Z-module homomorphism f : R I such that f|L = f .


Now, we take : R HomZ (R, I) to be the map given by (r)

(x) := f(x r) for every x, r R.


Observe that is a well-defined R-module homomorphism. Furthermore, clearly extends . By
Baers Criterion, HomZ (R, I) is injective.
Q.E.D.
Theorem 8.9. Every unitary module M over a unital ring R may be embedded in a unitarily
injective R-module.
Proof: We shall firstly assume the fact (to be proven in the next section) that every abelian group
(i.e., every unitary Z-module) can be embedded in an injective abelian group (i.e., a unitarily
Z-module). Now, since M is an abelian group, there is an injective abelian group I along with
a monomorphism f : M I of abelian groups. Define f : HomZ (R, M ) HomZ (R, I) by
f(g) := f g. Clearly, f is a monomorphism of R-modules.
Next,
 Hom
 R (R, M ) is an R-submodule of HomZ (R, M ). Define the map : M HomR (R, M )
by (m) (r) := r m. It is easily seen that this is an R-module isomorphism with inverse
 : HomR (R, M ) M being the map () := (1R ) for every HomR (R, M ). That is, we have
the sequence of R-module monomorphisms


M
HomR (R, M )
HomZ (R, M )
HomZ (R, I) .
35

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Algebra (Spring 2015)

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The composition of these maps gives an embedding M HomZ (R, I), where HomZ (R, I) is injective. The proof is now complete.
Q.E.D.
Corollary 8.10. Every module M over a ring R may be embedded in an injective R-module.
Exercise 8.11. Let R be a ring and M an R-module. Let C be a subcategory of Mod(R).
A right resolution, or a coresolution, of M in C is an exact sequence of objects in C of the form
0 M E 0 E 1 E 2 . . ..
Suppose now that C is either Mod(R) or, if R is unital, UMod(R). For an object M in C, we
say that a coresolution 0 M I 0 I 1 I 2 . . ., where I 0 , I 1 , I 2 , . . . are objects in C, is an
injective resolution (or, to be precise, an injective coresolution) if each of the I i s is injective in C.
Prove that every object M in C has an injective resolution (hence, C has enough injectives).
Theorem 8.12. Let R be a ring, and C either Mod(R) or, if R is unital, UMod(R). The following
conditions on an object I in C are equivalent:
(i) The object I is injective;
(ii) Every short exact sequence 0 I B C 0 splits; and
(iii) If M is a object in C containing I as an R-submodule, then I is a direct summand of M .
Proof:
[(i)(ii)] This part follows easily by dualizing our proof for a similar statement for projective modules.

[(ii)(iii)] Suppose (ii) holds. Then, if we have an embedding I


M for some object M in C, then

0I
M M/I 0 is a short exact sequence of objects in C, which splits. Therefore,
M  I (M/I), as required.
[(iii)(i)] Suppose (iii) holds. Then I is an R-submodule of an injective object Q of C. Then, by the
hypothesis, Q = I J  I J for some R-submodule J of Q. Since the direct product
of objects in C is injective if and only if each term is injective, we conclude that I itself is
injective.
Q.E.D.

36

Algebra (Spring 2015)

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Divisible Modules

Definition 9.1 (Divisible Modules). A left module M over a ring R is said to be divisible if and
only if, for every nonzero r R which is not a right zero divisor and for every m M , there exists
m
M such that m = r m.
A right module M over a ring R is said to be divisible if and only if,
for every nonzero r R which is not a left zero divisor and for every m M , there exists m
M
such that m = m
r.
Exercise 9.2. Let R be a ring and M a divisible R-module. Prove that any homomorphic image
of M is also a divisible R-module. In particular, if N is an R-submodule of M , then justify that
M/N is divisible.
Theorem 9.3. Let R be a ring. A family (Mj )jJ of R-modules is given, where J is an index set.
(a) The direct product of

Mj is divisible if and only if each of the Mj s is divisible.

jJ

(b) The direct sum of

Mj is divisible if and only if each of the Mj s is divisible. In particular,

jJ

every direct summand of a divisible R-module is divisible.


(c) If each of the Mj s is a divisible R-submodule of an R-module M , then the sum

Mj is a

jJ

divisible R-submodule of M .
Theorem 9.4. Let R be a unital ring. Then, every unitarily injective R-module is divisible.
Proof: Let r be a nonzero element of R which is not a right zero divisor. For a unitarily injective
R-module I and m I, consider the R-module homomorphism f : R r I sending s r 7 s m
for every s R. This is a well defined R-module homomorphism. Now, note that we have the
diagram
0

Rr

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in which the top row is exact. Hence, there exists f : R I that extends f . Now, left m
:= f (1R ).
We must then have r m
= r f (1R ) = f (r 1R ) = f(r) = f (r) = m.
Q.E.D.
Definition 9.5. A principal left ideal ring is a ring in which every left ideal is principal, i.e., generated
as a left ideal by a single element. A principal right ideal ring is a ring in which every right ideal
is principal, i.e., generated as a right ideal by a single element. A principal left-and-right ideal ring
is a ring all left ideals and all right ideals are principal. A principal ideal ring is a ring in which
any two-sided ideal is principal, i.e., generated as a two-sided ideal by a single element. A principal
ideal domain is a principal ideal ring which is an integral domain. (Recall that an integral domain
is a commutative unital ring without a zero divisor. Therefore, a principal ideal domain, being an
integral domain, is unital.)

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Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Theorem 9.6. Let R be a principal left ideal unital ring. A unitary R-module is unitarily injective
if and only if it is divisible.
Proof: We only need to prove the converse. Suppose that a unitary R-module I is divisible. Let
L be a left ideal of R. As R is a principal ideal ring, L is generated by a single element s R,
or L = R s. Now, for an arbitrary R-module homomorphism : L I, let m := (s). As I is
divisible, there exists m
I for which s m
= m. Now, we extends to : R I via (r)

:= r m

for every r R. By Baers Criterion, I must be a unitarily injective R-module.


Q.E.D.
Corollary 9.7. Let D be a principal ideal domain. A unitary D-module is unitarily injective if
and only if it is divisible. In particular, every divisible abelian group (i.e., every divisible unitary
Z-module) is an injective abelian group.
Corollary 9.8. Let D be a division ring. Then, every D-vector space is an injective D-vector
space (i.e., a unitarily injective D-module). In fact, every D-vector space is free, projective, and
injective as a unitary D-module.
Example 9.9. The abelian groups Q, Q/Z, and R are divisible, whence injective.
Exercise 9.10. Let D be a principal ideal domain and M a unitary D-module. Show that M is
the internal direct sum N L, where N is a divisible D-submodule and L is reduced (i.e., L has no
nontrivial divisible D-submodule).
Theorem 9.11. Let D be a principal ideal domain. Every unitary D-module can be embedded in
a divisible unitary D-module.
Proof: Let F be the field of quotient
Mof D. For any unitary D-module M , there is a unitarily free
D, and a D-module epimorphism E M with kernel K so
D-module E on a set J, so that E 
that E/K  M . Now, embed E in

jJ
M

F via the D-module monomorphism : E

jJ

F . Hence,

jJ

induces a D-module isomorphism E/K  (E)/(K). Since

F /(K) is a homomorphic

jJ

image of a divisible D-module, it must be divisible, Then, we have the embedding of M into the
divisible D-module D/f (K) via the composition


M
E/K
(E)/(K)

F /(K) .

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jJ

Q.E.D.
Corollary 9.12. Every abelian group may be embedded in a divisible abelian group.
Definition 9.13 (Torsion Elements). Let R be a ring and M an R-module. An element m M is
said to be a torsion element if r m = 0M for some r R with r , 0R . If M has no torsion elements
other than 0M , then we say that M is torsion-free. The set of all torsion elements of M is denoted
by Tor(M ).
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Algebra (Spring 2015)

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Theorem 9.14. Let D be an integral domain and M a unitary D-module.


(a) The set Tor(M ) is a D-submodule of M , whence we call Tor(M ) the torsion D-submodule of M .
(b) The unitary D-module M/Tor(M ) is torsion-free.
(c) If M is divisible, then Tor(M ) is also divisible.
(d) If D is a principal ideal domain and M is divisible, then M = Tor(M ) N for some torsion-free
D-submodule N of M .
Proof: Parts (a), (b), and (c) are easy exercises. Part (d) follows from Parts (b), along with the
fact that Tor(M ) is a unitarily injective D-module due to Part (c).
Q.E.D.
Theorem 9.15. Let D be a principal ideal domain and M a divisible unitary D-module. If M is
torsion-free, then M is a direct sum of (possibly zero) copies of F , where F is the field of fractions
of D.
Proof: We only need to show that M is an F -vector space. For m M and d D with d , 0D ,
1
there is a unique element m
M such that d m
= m. Hence, we shall denote m
by m. Now,
d
 
 
a
1
for a, b D, with b , 0D , and x M , we define
x := a
x . It can easily be seen that
b
b
this definition makes M a unitary F -module, and the proof is complete.
Q.E.D.
Theorem 9.16. Let D be
" a#principal ideal domain, p an irreducible element of D, and F the field of
1
a
fractions of D. Define D
to be a D-submodule of F consisting of elements of the form , where
p
b
" #
1
def
/D associated
a, b D with b = pk for some k N0 . Then, the Prfer D-module D (p ) == D
p
to p is a divisible unitary D-module.
Proof: Let a " D# and k N0 . For d D with d , 0D , we need to show that there exists an
1
a
element x of D
such that d (x + D) = k + D. Suppose that d = pr s with r N0 and s D
p
p


k
such that p - s. That is, gcd p , s is a unit, whence there exist u, v D for which pk u+sv = 1D .
av
Take x := k+r . Then,
p
dx
Hence, d (x + D) =

a
s (a v)
a
a (s v 1D )
pk u
=

=
=

= u D .
pk
pk
pk
pk
pk
a
+ D, and so D (p ) is divisible.
pk

39

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Q.E.D.

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn
" #

Corollary 9.17. Let p N be a prime integer. The Prfer p-group Z (p ) is the quotient Z

1
/Z
p

" #

1
denotes the abelian subgroup of Q containing all rational numbers
p
a
that can be written in the form , where a, b Z with b = pk for some k N0 . Then, Z (p ) is an
b
injective abelian group.

of abelian groups, where Z

Theorem 9.18. Let D be a principal ideal domain and F its field of fractions. For a given divisible
unitary D-module M , M is a direct sum of (possibly zero) copies of F and Tor(M ). The torsion
submodules Tor(M ) is a direct sum of (possibly zero) copies of D-modules of the form D (p ) for
various irreducible elements p of D.
Proof: We only need to be concerned about the structure of T := Tor(M ). Two elements a and b
of D are said to be associates in D if there is a unit u D such that b = a u, in which case we
shall write a b. Note that is an equivalence relation on D. Let P be a set of representatives
of the partition (D/ ) which are prime in D.
Define, for each p P , Tp to be the D-submodule
of T consisting of elements x T such that
M
pk x = 0M for some k N0 . Clearly, T =
Tp . Now, the problem is reduced to studying each
pP

Tp individually, for p P .
Fix a prime p P such that Tp is nonzero. A sequence (m0 , m1 , m2 , . . .) of elements of Tp is said
to be good, if p mi = mi1 for every
[ i = 1, 2, . . .. For a good sequence m := (m0 , m1 , m2 , . . .), we
define Nm to be the D-submodule
(D mi ), which is isomorphic as a D-module to D (p ). A
iN0

set S of good sequences is said to be excellent if the sum

Nm is direct. Let now S be the set

mS

of all excellent sets. Clearly, S is nonempty. Order S by inclusion. Observe that (S, ) satisfies
the hypothesis
X of Zorns Lemma. Hence, it must have a maximal element Z. We claim that the
Nm , which is direct, equals Tp itself. If not, then there exists x Tp \ N such that
sum N :=
mZ

p x = 0M . Create a good sequence x := (x0 , x1 , x2 , . . .) with x = x0 . Then, we can easily see that
the sum N + Nx is direct, making Z {x} an element of S, contradicting the maximality of Z.
Hence, Tp =

X
mZ

Nm =

Nm  D (p )

|Z|

Q.E.D.

mZ

Corollary 9.19. Every divisible abelian group is a direct sum of (possibly zero) copies of Q and
(possibly zero) copies of Prfer groups Z (p ) for various primes p N.
Exercise 9.20. Let D be a principal ideal domain and F its field M
of fractions. Prove that the
unitary D-module F/D is divisible and isomorphic to the D-module
D (p ), where P is a set
pP

containing representatives of equivalence classes of M


irreducible elements that are associates. Prove
also that Q/Z is isomorphic as an abelian group to
Z (p ), where P+ is the set of positive prime
pP+

integers.

40

Algebra (Spring 2015)

10

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Final Exam Preparatory Problems with Solutions

Problem 10.1. Let (G, ) be a group such that the automorphism group Aut(G) is cyclic. Prove
that G is abelian.
Solution: We claim that, for an arbitrary group H, H/C(H) is isomorphic to the subgroup Inn(H)
of inner automorphisms of H. To show this, we consider the map : H Aut(H), where (h) is
the conjugation by g for every h H. Hence, im() = Inn(H) and ker() = C(H). By the First
Isomorphism Theorem for Groups, H/C(H)  Inn(H).
We now claim that, for a group H, if H/C(H) is cyclic, then H is abelian. Suppose that H
is a group such that H/C(H) is cyclic, say with generator h C(H). Then, for elements a and
i
j
b in H,
 we can
 write
 a= h  x and b = h y, for some i, j Z and x, y C(H). Thus,
ab = hi x hj y = hi hj (xy) = hi+j (xy), since x, y C(G). Similarly, ba = hi+j (xy).
Therefore, a b = b a for every a, b H, whence H is abelian.
Finally, suppose that G is a group such that Aut(G) is cyclic. Then, the subgroup Inn(G) of
Aut(G) is also cyclic. However, this means G/C(G)  Inn(G) is cyclic. By the result above, G is
abelian.
Problem 10.2. Let (G, ) be a group containing a subgroup H of finite index. Show that G contains
a normal subgroup N of finite index such that N H.
Solution: Suppose H is a subgroup of G of index n N. Then, G acts on the n left cosets g H,
where g G, by left translation. This gives a group homomorphism : G S n . The kernel N of
is a normal subgroup of G. Furthermore, as G/N
 im(),
by


the First Isomorphism Theorem




of Groups, we conclude that [G : N ] = |G/N | = im() S n < . We now prove that N H.
For g N , (g) must be the identity element of S n , whence g H = H. That is, g H. Therefore,
N H, as desired.
Problem 10.3. Let p and q be positive prime integers. Show that any group G of order p2 q is not
simple.
Solution: Let G be a group of order p2 q. If p > q, then a Sylow p-subgroup H of G is of index q.
Since [G : H] = q is the smallest prime divisor of |G|, H must be normal, whence G is not simple.
If p = q, then G is a p-group. Hence, the center C(G) is nontrivial. If C(G) , G, then C(G) is
a normal subgroup of G, whence G is not simple. If C(G) = G, then G is commutative and any
subgroup of G is normal. Take an arbitrary element x G of order p, which exists by Cauchys
Theorem. The subgroup Z generated by x is a cyclic group of order p, which is a normal subgroup
of G, and so G is once again nonsimple.
If p < q, then let n be the number Sylow q-subgroupsnof G. By
o the Third Sylow Theorem, n divides
|G| = p2 q as well as n 1 (mod q). That is, n 1, p, p2 . Clearly, n , p since p < q, making
p 1 (mod q) impossible. If n = p2 , then there are p2 subgroups of order q, and the intersection
between any two different such subgroups is trivial. Hence, there are p2 (q 1) elements of G with
order q, leaving p2 elements in the group. The Sylow p-subgroup P of G must then consist of all
41

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

of these elements. However, this means P is unique, and so P is normal in G. Therefore, G is


nonsimple. Finally, if n = 1, then there exists a single Sylow q-subgroup Q of G, which must be
normal. Hence, G is nonsimple.
Indeed, we can show that G is a solvable group. From our work earlier, we conclude that G
has a normal subgroup N such that either |N | = p2 or |N | = q. Hence, the subnormal series
G D N D {1G } is a solvable series since the factor groups G/N and N are abelian (since one of
them must have order p2 and the other is of order q). That is, G is solvable.
Problem 10.4. Let F be a field and V an F -vector space. The general linear group GL(V ) is the
group of invertible F -linear transformations
on V under composition.
The affine group on V is the
n
o
group Aff(V ) := GL(V ) n V = (A, v) | A GL(V ) and v V with the following multiplication


rule: (A1 , v1 ) (A2 , v2 ) := A1 A2 , A1 (v2 ) + v1 for every A1 , A2 GL(V ) and v1 , v2 V . Now,


let V be F itself. Show that, if F has at least three elements, then the group Aff(F ) is solvable, but
not nilpotent.
Solution: Note that G := Aff(F ) is F n F , where F is the multiplicative group of F consisting
of nonzero elements, with the multiplication rule (a, b) (c, d) = (a c, a d + b), where a, c F and
b, d F . Note that 1G := (1F , 0F ) is the identity element of G. Firstly, we shall find the center of
G. Suppose that (a, b) C(G). Then, for any (x, y) G, we must have (a, b) (x, y) = (x, y) (a, b).
Thus, (a x, a y + b) = (x a, x b + y) for every (x, y) G. This means (a 1F ) y = b (x 1F )
for every (x, y) G, whence a = 1F and b = 0F . Hence, the center of G is trivial. Now, as Ck (G)
is the preimage of C (G/Ck1 (G)) under the canonical projection for k N, with C0 (G) = {1G },
we see that Ck (G) = {1G } for every k N0 . Thus, G is not nilpotent.


We then proceed to show that G is solvable. For (c, d) G, we have (c, d)1 = c1 , c1 d . Now,




for (x, y), (z, w) G, (x, y)(z, w)(x, y)1 (z, w)1 = (xz, xw+y) x1 , x1 y z 1 , z 1 w .


Consequently, (x, y) (z, w) (x, y)1 (z, w)1 = (z, x w y z + y) z 1 , z 1 w , which equals
(1F , x w w y z + y). Obviously, this means the commutator [G, G] of G contains {1F } F ,
which is indeed a subgroup
of G. Thus,
[G, G] = {1F } F . Now, recall that the k-th derived
h
i
(k)
(k1)
(k1)
subgroup G of G is G
,G
for each k N and G(0) is G itself. The derived series of G
then consists of G(0) = G = F n F , G(1) = {1F } F , and G(2) = G(3) = . . . = {1G }. This means
G is solvable.
Problem 10.5. Let A be an abelian group. Show that A is finite if and only if it has a composition
series of finite length. (In Hungerfords Textbook, a composition series for a group is assumed to be
of finite length.)
Solution: Firstly, we claim that every simple abelian group is finite with prime order. Let (S, +)
be a simple abelian group with identity 0S . Take x , 0S in S (which exists as S is nontrivial).
The subgroup hxi generated by x is a nontrivial normal subgroup of S. Hence, S = hxi. If x
has an infinite order, then h2 xi is clearly a proper nontrivial normal subgroup of S, which is a
contradiction. Therefore, x has a finite order p N with p > 1. If p is not prime, there exists a
proper divisor d , 1, with d N, of p. Then, hd xi is a proper nontrivial normal subgroup of S,
again a contradiction. This mean p must be prime, whence |S| = p is prime.
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Since every finite group has a composition series of finite length, we only need to prove the converse:
if an abelian group has a composition series of finite length, then the group is finite. Assume that
(A, +) is an abelian group with a composition series A = A0 D A1 D A2 D . . . D An = {0A },
where n N0 , 0A is the identity of A, and A0 , A1 , A2 , . . . , An are abelian subgroups of A. Because
each composition factor Ai1 /Ai , where i = 1, 2, . . . , n, is a simple abelian group, we must have
[Ai1 : Ai ] = |Ai1 /Ai | = pi for some prime pi N, for each i = 1, 2, . . . , n. Note from Lagranges
Theorem that |A| = |A0 | = [A0 : A1 ] |A1 |, and so we have |A| = [A0 : A1 ] [A1 : A2 ] |A2 |. Thus,
by repetitively using Lagranges Theorem, we get |A| = [A0 : A1 ] [A1 : A2 ] [An1 : An ] |An |,
as |An | = 1, we obtain |A| =

n
Y

[Aj1 : Aj ]. Therefore, the order of A is given by the product

j=1

|A| =

n
Y
i=1

[Ai1 : Ai ] =

n
Y

pi < . Thus, A is a finite abelian group, and the proof is complete.

i=1

Problem 10.6. Let R be a nonzero ring such that, for each nonzero a R, there exists a unique
b R for which a b a = a. Prove that R is a division ring.
Solution: For a R with a , 0R , we shall write a1 for the unique b R such that a b a = a.
Firstly, we proceed by showing that R has no zero divisors. Suppose z R with z , 0R is a left
zero divisor or a right zero
divisor.
Then, there exists y , 0R such that z y = 0R or y z = 0R .


1
However, this means z y + z
z = z, which is a contradiction to the uniqueness of z 1 . Hence,
R has no zero divisors.
We now claim that a1 a a1 = a1 for every nonzero
a R. Let a R

 be such that a , 0R .
1
1
1
1
1
From a a a = a, we then see that a a a
a = a a a a = a1 a. Because R
has no zero divisors, a1 a a1 = a1 .
Next, for any r, a R with a , 0R , there exists a unique s R such that r = s a. Let r, a R be
such that a , 0R . The uniqueness of s such 
that r = s a is trivial (as R has no zero divisors). We
note that, if s := r a1 , then (s a) a1 =

r a1 a a1 = r a1 a a1 = r a1 . This

means r = s a, as claimed. Similarly, for any r, s R with a , 0R , there exists a unique t R


such that r = a1 t (i.e., when t is equal to a r).
Now, for a fixed b R with b , 0R . Define 1R := b1 b. We claim that 1R is the unique
multiplicative identity of R. To show this, take an arbitrary

 r R. We see
 that there exists an
1
1
element s R such that r = sb. Hence, r1R = (sb) b b = s b b b = sb = r. Similarly,


 

let t R be such that r = b1 t, then 1R r = b1 b b1 t = b1 b b1 r = b1 t = r.


Ergo, 1R is indeed a multiplicative identity of R, which must also be unique.


Finally, for any nonzero a R, a 1R = a = a a1 a = a a1 a . That is, a1 a = 1R .




Likewise, 1R a = a = a a1 a = a a1 a, implying a a1 = 1R . Therefore, a1 is the unique


multiplicative inverse of a. Hence, R is a division ring.
Problem 10.7. Let R be a unital ring and S a ring without zero divisors. If a nonzero ring
homomorphism f : R S exists, show that S is unital with multiplicative identity f (1R ).

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Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Solution: Let e := f (1R ). Clearly, e , 0S and e2 = e. For an arbitrary s S, we note that


(s e) e = s e2 = s e, whence s e = s, as S lacks zero divisors. Similarly, e s = s for every
s S. That is, S is unital and e = 1S .
Problem 10.8. For n N0 , let Matnn (R) be the ring of n-by-n matrices over a ring R. For a
division ring D, show that, for every n N, Matnn (D) has only two two-sided ideals.
Solution: Let D be a division ring and n N. The ring Matnn (D) is denoted by M . We want
to show that the only two-sided ideals of M are the zero ideal {0M } and the whole ring M itself.
Suppose J is a nonzero two-sided ideal of M . Then, J contains a nonzero element A.
Let [n] := {1, 2, . . . , n}. For i, j [n], write Eji for the n-by-n matrix with 1D at the (i, j)-entry
and 0D everywhere else. Note that Eji Elk = jk Eli for every i, j, k, l [n] (here,
X is thej Kronecke
k
k
Aij Ei for some
deltafor j, k [n], j = 1R if j = k, and j = 0R if j , k). Hence, A =
i,j[n]

Aij F with i, j [n]. Suppose that A , 0D , for some , [n].


For p [n], observe that Ep A =
p, q [n], we then have

Ep

Aij Ep Eji =

i,j[n]
X
q
Aj
A E =
j[n]
Eqp J for every

Ejp

Eq

Aij i Ejp =

 i,j[n]
X

Aj

Eqp

Aj Ejp . For

 j[n]

= A Eqp . Since

j[n]

A , 0D , we conclude that
p, q [n] and D. Since the matrices of the
q
form Ep , with p, q [n] and D, generate the whole ring M , we conclude that J = M .
Indeed, for any unital ring R and n N0 , the set Tn of all two-sided ideals of Matnn (M ) is in a
bijective correspondence with the set In of all two-sided ideals of R. We associate each two-sided
ideal J of Matnn (M ) with the two-sided ideal fn (J) of R generated by the entries of all matrices
in J. Conversely, for a two-sided ideal K of R, we take gn (K) to be the set of all matrices in
Matnn (R) with entries in K (i.e., gn (K) = Matnn (K)). Clearly, the function fn : Tn In is the
inverse of the function gn : In Tn , and vice versa.


Problem 10.9. Let R be the ring Z[x]/ x2 + 5 . Prove that R is not a principal ideal ring.

Solution: Note that R is isomorphic to A := Z[], with := 5. Elements of A take the form
x + y with x, y Z. Consider the ideal I := (2, 1 + ). We shall prove that I is not principal.
Firstly, define N : A Z via N (x + y ) := x2 + 5 y 2 for every x, y Z. Observe that N is
multiplicative (i.e., N (u v) = N (u) N (v) for every u, v A).
Firstly, we shall prove that I is a proper ideal of A. To this end, we show that 1 < I. Suppose
contrary that 1 = 2 u + (1 + ) v for some u, v A; then, 1 2 u = (1 + ) v. However, N (1 2 u)
is odd, while N (1 + ) v is divisible by N (1 + ) = 6 is even. This is a contradiction, whence
1 < I, so I is proper.
Now, for the sake of contradiction, assume that I is principal and generated by A. This means
must divide 2 and 1 + . Because N (2) = 4 and N (1 + ) = 6, we conclude that N () {1, 2}.
Since x2 + 5 y 2 = 2 has no solution (x, y) Z2 and the only integral solutions to x2 + 5 y 2 = 1 are
(+1, 0) and (1, 0), we see that the only possible values of are +1 and 1. This contradicts our
earlier conclusion that I is not a proper ideal of R. Hence, I cannot be principal.
44

Algebra (Spring 2015)

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Problem 10.10. The ring Z[i] of Gaussian integers is composed by elements of the form a + b i,
where a, b Z. The multiplication rule on Z[i] is given by (a + b i) (c + d i) = (ac bd) + (ad + bc) i
for a, b, c, d Z. This ring is a Euclidean domain with the Euclidean function N (a + b i) := a2 + b2
for every a, b Z. For a nonzero ideal I of Z[i], show that the quotient ring Z[i]/I is finite. What
are all possible fields that come from the quotient Z[i]/I of Z[i] by an ideal I?
Solution: Since R := Z[i] is a Euclidean domain, it is a principal ideal domain. Therefore, a
nonzero ideal I is generated by a single element , 0R . For every R, we can perform the
Euclidean division on and write = q + r for some q, r R with N (r) < N (). Hence, each
element + I of R/I can be represented by a single element r R such that N (r) < N (). Since
r = u + v i for some x, y Z, the condition N (r) < N () is equivalent to u2 + v 2 < N (), which
has only finitely many solutions (u, v) Z. Therefore, R/I is a finite commutative unital ring.
To describe fields of the form R/I, where I is an ideal of R, we firstly determine when I = (),
with R, is a maximal ideal. Since R is a principal ideal domain, I is a prime ideal, whence
is a prime element of R. For R, if = a + b i with x, y Z, then the conjugate of is given
Now, note that
by := a b i, so that N () = .
= N () must be either a positive prime
integer or the square of a positive prime integer.
For a positive prime integer p, if p 1 (mod 4), then the solution to t2 1 (mod p) has no
solution t Z, which means there are no R with N () = p. Furthermore, p must then be prime
in R. Hence, if I := (p), then R/I is the field Fp [i]  Fp2 . Elements of Fp [i] takes the form x+y i, with
x, y Fp . The multiplication rule on Fp [i] is given by (x+y i)(z +w i) = (xz y w)+(xw+y z) i,
where x, y, z, w Fp .
Now, if p is a positive prime integer such that p = 2 or p +1 (mod 4), then t2 1 (mod p)
has a solution t Z. Therefore, p divides (t + i) (t i) for some t Z. Since p divides neither
t + i nor t i, we conclude that it is not prime in R, so there exists a prime of R such that
divides p. Clearly, this means p = N () =
. We want to show that, if I := (), then R/I is
the field Fp . Recall that must divide t + i or t i, for some t Z. Without loss of generality,
suppose that divides t i. For a, b Z, identify (a + b i) + I R/I with a + b t Fp . Evidently,
this identification is a ring isomorphism, and so R/I  Fp .
In summary, every possible field in the form R/I, where I is an ideal of R, takes either the form
Fp2 if p 1 (mod 4) is a positive prime integer, or the form Fp if p = 2 or p +1 (mod 4) is a
positive prime integer. Our work is now complete.
Problem 10.11. Let D be a unique factorization domain and S D a multiplicative subset not
containing 0D . Prove that the localization S 1 D is also a unique factorization domain. Furthermore,
if D is a principal ideal domain, then show that S 1 D is also a principal ideal domain.
Solution: Let T be the set of irreducible elements of D that divide an element of S, and U the set
of all irreducible elements of D not in T . For an irreducible element p of D, we claim that p T
if and only if p is a unit in S 1 D. To show the direct implication, assume p T . Then, there
   
ps
x
pxs
s2
exists s S such that s = p x for some x D. Therefore,

=
= 2 = 1S 1 D .
s
s
ss
s
ps
1
Hence, p =
is a unit in S D. Conversely, assume that an irreducible p D is a unit in
s
45

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

x
ps

= 1S 1 D . Hence,
S D. Therefore, there exists s, t S and x D such that
s
t
pxs
s
= 1S 1 D = . Consequently, p x s2 = s2 t. Therefore, p x = t, or p T .
st
s
Now, assume that p U . We shall prove that p is irreducible in S 1 D. Suppose contrary
 that
  p is
x
ps
y
1
reducible in S D. Then, for s S, there exist x, y D and t, u S such that
=

.
s
t
u
Therefore, p s t u = s x y, whence p t u = x y. Now, p must divide either x or y, but not
both. Say, p divides x and x = p v for some v D. Then, we have v y = t u. This implies that
all irreducible factors of v and y must lie in T , as t, u S. By our earlier work, y, being a product
y
of irreducible elements in T , must be a unit in S 1 D. Therefore, is a unit in S 1 D. Hence, p is
u
irreducible in S 1 D.


 

Next, we shall verify that every irreducible element of S 1 D is associate (in S 1 D) to an element
a
in U . Suppose that
is an irreducible element of S 1 D. Then, a must be divisible by some
s
p U . Write
a =p b with

 b D. If b has a factor q U , say b = q c for some c D,
a
a
ps
qs
c

, whence is reducible, which is a contradiction. Therefore, all


then =
s
s
s
s
s
!


a
pb
ps
b
b
=
irreducible factors in b can only come from T . Hence, is a unit. Thus, =

s
s
s
s
s
1
is associate to p in S D.
a
For a D and s S, we want to find a factorization of into irreducible factors in S 1 D. We
s
!
start with the factorization a =

m
Y

i=1

pki i

n
Y

qjj in D, where m, n N0 , p1 , p2 , . . . , pm

j=1

T , k1 , k2 , . . . , km N, q1 , q2 ,
. . . , qn U , l
1 , l2 , . . . , ln N, and is a unit in D. Hence, we
lj
n 
Y
qj s
a
into irreducible factors in S 1 D, where Y denotes
have a factorization = Y
s
s
j=1
 
 !
m 
Y

pi s k i
a

, which is a unit in S 1 D. The uniqueness of such factorizations of can be


s
s
s
i=1
easily justified using the unique factorization property in D.
Finally, assume that D is a principal ideal domain and J is an ideal of S 1 D. Since J must take
the form S 1 I for some ideal I in D and I is generated as an ideal of D by a single element d D,
we conclude that J is generated by d as an ideal of S 1 D. Since this is true for any ideal J of
S 1 D, S 1 D must then be a principal ideal domain.
Problem 10.12. Let R be a commutative unital ring. For an ideal I of R, define I 0 := R and
I k := I I (k1) for every k N. Let M be a maximal ideal of R. For any positive integer n, prove
that R/M n has exactly one prime ideal. Prove also that R/M n is a local ring.
Solution: Firstly, let S be any commutative ring. An element x of S is said to be nilpotent if
xk = 0S for some k N. It is easily seen that the nilpotent elements of S form an ideal called the
nilradical of S, denoted by Nil(S). We shall prove that, if S is unital, then Nil(S) is the intersection
of all prime ideals of S. Firstly, we shall show that N := Nil(S) is contained in any prime ideal I of
46

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

S. For a prime ideal I and u N , let k be the smallest positive integer k such that uk I (which
much exists as u is nilpotent). If k > 1, then we see that either u I or uk1 I, since u uk1 I
and I is prime. This is a contradiction to the minimality assumption on k. Hence, k = 1, and
be the intersection of all prime ideals of S. Pick an element
u I. Therefore, N I. Now, let N
a S such that a is not nilpotent. Let T be the set of all ideals of R not containing any element
of the form ar with r N. Since the zero ideal is in T , T is nonempty. Order T by set inclusion.
Clearly, T satisfies the hypothesis of Zorns Lemma. Therefore, T has a maximal element J. Our
task is to show that J is a prime ideal. Suppose otherwise; then, there exist b, c S \ J such that
b c J. Then, the set Y of elements y S such that b y J is evidently an ideal of R properly
containing J. However, c Y \ J; therefore, by maximality of J, Y contains a for some N.
Similarly, the set Z of elements z S such that a z J is an ideal of R properly containing J
(as b Z \ J). Thus, Z contains an element of the form a for some N. However, this means
= N.
a+ = a a J, a contradiction. Thus, J is a prime ideal not containing a. This means N
Now, we see that the ideal M/M n is in the nilradical of R/M n . Hence, any prime ideal P of R/M n
must contain M/M n . However, P must arise as a quotient P /M n for some ideal P containing M n
of R. As P contains M/M n , we must have M P . Because M is a maximal ideal of R, we either
have P = M or P = R. The latter case does not happen, since otherwise P = R/M n , contradicting
the assumption that P is a prime ideal. Thus, P = M and P = M/M n . Consequently, the ring
R/M n has exactly one prime ideal.
Finally, we shall verify that R/M n is a local ring. Suppose that J is a maximal ideal of R/M n .
However, every maximal ideal is a prime ideal. Therefore, J = P , and so R/M n is local.
Problem 10.13. Let F be a field and x an indeterminate. Show that the localization of F [x] at the
prime ideal (x) is isomorphic to a subring of the ring of power series F JxK.
Solution: Let P denote the ideal (x) and R the localization of F [x] at P . For g(x) F [x] \ P ,
f (x)
7 f (x) g(x)
there exists an inverse g(x) in F JxK. We define : R F JxK sending each
g(x)
for every f (x) F [x] and g(x) F [x] \ P . It is easy to show that this map is a well defined ring
monomorphism. Therefore, R is isomorphic to im() which is a subring of F JxK.
Problem 10.14. Prove that the polynomial xp1 + 2 xp2 + 3 xp3 + + (p 1) x + p is irreducible
over Q, where p is a positive prime integer and x is an indeterminate.
Solution: If p = 2, then the said polynomial is x+2, which is irreducible. Now, assume that p > 2.
Let P (x) denote the polynomial xp1 + 2 xp2 + 3 xp3 + + (p 1) x + p. By Gausss Lemma, we
can show that P (x) is irreducible over Z. Note that (x 1) P (x) = xp + xp1 + + x! p, and so
 p

x 1
(x + 1)p 1
(x1)P (x) =
xp. Define Q(x) := P (x+1). Then, xQ(x) =
(x+1)p.
x1
x
!
!
!
p
p2
X
X p+1
p r1
That is, x Q(x) = (x + 1)
x
p, which means Q(x) = xp1 +
xr .
r
r
+
2
r=1
r=0
The coefficients of 1, x1 , x2 , . . . , xp3 in Q(x) are all divisible by p, whilst the coefficient of xp2 is
not divisible by p and the constant term is not divisible by p2 . Hence, by the Extended Eisensteins
Criterion, Q(x) has an irreducible factor R(x) of degree at least p 2, which may be taken to be
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Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

monic. If R(x) , Q(x), then Q(x) must have a linear factor, whence Q(x) has an integer root.
That is, P (x) has an integer
 root. If r is an integer root of P (x),then r must divides p (since
P (r) = 0 means p = r rp2 + 2 rp3 + + (p 2) r + (p 1) . Therefore, r {1, p}.
p+1
> 0. Finally,
Clearly, P (+1) and P (+p) are positive, so r {1, p}. Now, P (1) =
2
observe that P (p) p(p 1) + p 2 p . 0 (mod p2 ). Hence, P (x) has no integer root, which
is a contradiction. Therefore, R(x) = Q(x), or Q(x) is irreducible over Z, which then implies that
P (x) is also irreducible over Z, whence over Q as well.
Problem 10.15. Let x be an indeterminate. Determine all positive prime integers p such that the
polynomial x3 + 5 x2 2 x + 1 has a multiple root in Fp .
Solution: Let P (x) := x3 + 5 x2 2 x + 1. The first derivative of P (x) is given by the polynomial
P 0 (x) = 3 x2 + 10 x 2. If p = 3, then we have P 0 (x) = x 2 in F3 . That is, 2 is the only possible
root of P 0 (x) in F3 . However, P (2) , 0 in F3 . Therefore, P (x) has no multiple roots over F3 .
10 2 2
Now, assume that p , 3. Therefore, it is possible to define Q(x) := x2 +
x . We observe
3
3


5
62
19
that P (x) x +
Q(x) = x + . That is, P (x) and Q(x) has a common factor if
3
9
9
19
only if p < {2, 3, 31} and x =
is a common root for both P (x) and P 0 (x) = 3 Q(x). Now,
62
 
 
211025
5175
19
19
P
=
and P 0
=
. Since gcd(211025, 5175) = 575 = 52 23, the only
62
238328
62
3844
possible values of p for which P (x) has a multiple root are p = 5 and p = 23. To verify the result,
P (x) = (x 2)2 (x 1) over F5 and P (x) = (x 17)2 (x 7) over F23 .
Problem 10.16. Let R be a ring. For R-modules A and B, suppose that f : A B and g : B A
are R-module homomorphisms such that g f = idA . Prove that B = im(f ) ker(g).
Solution:
For 
each b B, we see that (f g)(b) im(f ). Furthermore, for b B, we have





g b (f g)(b) = g(b) g (f g) (b) = g(b) (g f ) g (b), and, as g f = idA , we obtain


g b (f g)(b) = g(b) (idA g) (b) = g(b) g(b) = 0B . Therefore, B = im(f ) + ker(g).


We now need to verify that the sum is direct. Suppose im(f ) ker(g). Then, = f (x) for
some x A and g() = 0A . However, this means x = idA (x) = (g f )(x) = g f (x) = g() = 0A .
Consequently, = f (0A ) = 0B . Hence, im(f ) ker(g) = {0B }, or B = im(f ) ker(g).
Problem 10.17. Let R be a ring. Consider the following commutative diagram of R-module homomorphisms
A1

f1

B1

A2

g1

C1

B2

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f2

g2

C2

in which the rows are exact. Prove that there exists an exact sequence
f

1
1
2
2
ker()

ker()

ker()
coker()

coker()

coker()

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of R-module homomorphisms, where f1 := f1 |ker() , g1 := g1 |ker() , f2 is induced by f2 , and g2 is


induced by g2 . Prove also that, if f1 is monic, then f1 is monic as well, and that, if g2 is epic, then
g2 is epic as well. (This result is known as the Snake Lemma.)
Solution: Firstly, the induced maps f2 and g2 are given by f2 (a + im()) := f2 (a) + im() for
every a A2 and g2 (b + im()) := g2 (b) + im() for every b B2 . We firstly need to show that
f1 , g1 , f2 , and g2 are well defined.
 


Secondly, we must show that im f1 ker(). Let a ker(). Then, f1 (a) = (f1 (a)),


which yields f1 (a) = ( f1 ) (a) = (f2 ) (a) = f2 (a) = f2 (0A2 ) = 0B2 . Hence, we have
 
im f1 ker(), as desired. Similarly, im (
g1 ) ker().
Now, we want to show that f2 is well defined. Suppose that a1 + im() = a2 + im(), where
a1 , a2 A2 , then a1 a2 im().
That is, a1 a2 = (x) for some x A1 . Now, therefore,

we have f2 (a1 a2 ) = f2 (x) = (f2 ) (x) = ( f1 ) (x) = (f1 (x)) im(). Consequently,
f2 (a1 + im()) = f2 (a1 ) + im() = f2 (a2 ) + im() = f2 (a2 + im()). Hence, f2 is well defined,
and similarly, so is g2 .
Next, we define : ker() coker() as follows. Take an arbitrary function s : C1 B1 such that

1
g1 s = idC1 . Define := s, where : im (f2 ) A2 is the map f2 |im(f2 ) , whereas is the
canonical projection A2 coker(). We claim that is an R-module homomorphism that does not
depend on the choice of s. Fix c ker(). Suppose b1 , b2 B1 are such that g1 (b1 ) = c = g1 (b2 ).
We then have g1 (b1 b2 ) = 0C1 . That is, b1 b2 ker (g1 ) = im (f1 ). Suppose that a A1 is
such that b1 b2 = f1 (a). Then, (f2 ) (a) = ( f1 ) (a) = (f1 (a)) = (b1 b2 ). That is,
(b1 b2 ) = f2 (a) im (f2 ). Furthermore, ( ) (b1 b2 ) = (a) im(). This means
( ) (b1 b2 ) = im() = 0coker() and so ( ) (b1 ) = ( ) (b2 ), i.e., does not
depend on the section s. We have to now check that im( s) im (f2 ). For c ker(),
we

have c = g1 (b) for some b B1 . Now, 0C2 = (c) = ( g1 ) (b) = (g2 ) (b) = g2 (b) . Hence,
(b) ker (g2 ) im (f2 ). This means im( s) im (f2 ), as required. Moreover, it is obvious that
is an R-module homomorphism.
For the next step, we shall verify the exactness of the derived sequence.  For
 the exactness at
ker(), notice that ker (
g1 ) = ker (g1 ) ker() = im (f1 ) ker() im f1 . If b ker (
g1 ),
then b ker(g1 ) =
 im (f1 ), so b = f1 (a) with a A1 . Note that (f2 ) (a) = ( f1 ) (a),
leading to f2 (a) = (b) = 0B2 . Because f2 is monic, (a) = 0A1 , so a ker(). That is,
 
 
b = f1 (a) = f1 (a) im f1 . This means im f1 = ker (
g1 ).
Next, for b ker(), choose any section
: C1 B1 such that s (g1 (b)) = b. Then, we have
 s 
(
g1 (b)) = ( s) (g1 (b)) = ( ) (b) , whence (
g1 (b)) = ( ) (0B2 ) = im() = 0coker() .
 

Hence, we get im (
g1 ) ker(). On the other hand, suppose that c = 0coker() for some
c ker(). Then, ( s)(c)
that ( s)(c) = (a) for some element
 im(). Suppose

a A1 ; i.e., ( s)(c) = f2 ( s)(c) = (f2 ) (a) = ( f1 ) (a). Consequently, we
obtain (s(c) f1 (a)) = 0B2 , implying that s(c) f1 (a) lies within ker(). Now, we observe that
g1 (s(c) f1 (a)) = (g1 s) (c) (g1 f1 ) (a) = c, since g1 s = idC1 and g1 f1 = 0. Therefore,
c im (
g1 ), so im (
g1 ) = ker().
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Then, we verify the exactness at coker(). Firstly, observe that f2 : A2 coker() sends a
A2
tof2 (
a) + im().
Therefore, if b im (f2 ), we have (f2 ) (b) = b. It follows immediately that


f2 ( )(b) = b+im() for every b im (f2 ). In particular, for c ker(), (s)(c) im(). That


is, we have f2 (c) = f2 ( ) ( s)(c)






+ im() = ( s)(c) + im() = im() = 0coker() .




Thus, im() ker f2 . Also, if a A2 is such that f2 a + im() = 0coker() = im(), then
f2 (a) im(), whence (b) = f2 (a) for some b B1 . Then, by the commutativity of the given
diagram, (g1 (b)) = ( g1 ) (b) = (g2 ) (b) = (g2 f2 ) (a) = 0C2 , making
 g1 (b) ker(). Clearly,
(g1 (b)) = a + im(), yielding a + im() im(). Hence, im() = ker f2 .


For the last exactness, we have the following equalities: ker (


g2 ) = g21 im() + im() / im()
 
 
and im f2 = (im (f2 ) + im()) / im(). Evidently, as im (f2 ) = ker (g2 ), im f2 ker (
g2 ).
Suppose now that b B2 , b + im() ker (
g2 ). Then, g2 (b) im(), whence g2 (b) = (c)
for some c C1 . As g1 is epic, there exists an element b0 B1 such that g1 (b0 ) = c. Now,
we have (g2  ) (b0 ) = ( g1 ) (b0 ) = (c) = g2 (b). This means b (b0 ) ker (g2 ), whence
 
b + im() = b (b0 ) + im() ker (g2 ) + im() / im(). Ergo, b + im() im f2 , where
we use the fact that ker (g2 ) = im (f2 ).
Finally, suppose that f1 is monic. Then, f1 = f1 |ker() : ker() ker() is also monic. Likewise, if
g2 is epic, then g2 : coker() coker() must be epic as well.
Problem 10.18. Let R be the ring Z[x], where x is an indeterminate. Consider the sequence of




f
g
R-module homomorphisms 0 R
R
Z 0, where f p(x) := x p(x) and g p(x) := p(0)
for all p(x) R, and where Z is given an R-module structure via x k := 0 for every k Z. Prove
that this is a short exact sequence of R-modules. Does it split as a short exact sequence of abelian
groups? Does it split as a short exact sequence of R-modules?
Solution: Firstly, im(f ) = R x. For p(x) R, p(0) = 0R means that the constant term of p(x)
is zero, whence p(x) = x q(x) for some q(x) R. Hence, p(x) im(f ). Obviously, this means
im(f ) = ker(g), and the sequence is exact.
This short exact sequence splits as abelian groups because Z is a free abelian group. On the other
hand, if the sequence splits as R-modules, then there must exist an R-module homomorphism
s : Z R such that g s = idZ . Note that, for every a Z, s(a) = f (pa (x)) + a for some
pa (x) R, since a = (g s)(a). Now, for a, b Z, we note that s(a b) = a s(b) as well as
s(a b) = s s(a) b = s(a) s(b) = s(a) s(b). Ergo, from the expansions a s(b) = a f (pb (x)) + a b
and s(a) s(b) = f (pa (x))
 f (pb (x)) + a f (pb (x)) + b f (pa (x)) + a b, we get the equality
f (pa (x)) f (pb (x)) + b = 0R . For a fixed a Z, this equality holds for every b B. Clearly, if

b , 0, f (pb (x)) + b , 0R . Ergo, f (pa (x)) = 0R for every a Z. That is, s(a) = a for every a Z.
However, if a , 0, we have x s(a) = a x , 0R , whilst s(x a) = s(0) = 0R . This is a contradiction,
and so the short exact sequence of R-modules does not split.
Problem 10.19. Let d N and F a field. For n N, suppose there are pairwise distinct
s1 , s2 , . . . , sn F and polynomials f1 (x), f2 (x), . . . , fn (x) F [x] with x being an indeterminate. If,
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for every i = 1, 2, . . . , n, we have deg (fi ) < d and fi (si ) , 0F , but fi (sj ) = 0F for all j {1, 2, . . . , n}
with i , j, then show that n d.
Solution: The set nof polynomials inoF [x] of degree less than d form a d-dimensional vector space
over F with basis 1, x, x2 , . . . , xd1 . If we can show that f1 (x), f2 (x), . . . , fn (x) are F -linearly
independent, then we are done.
Suppose that

n
X

ai fi (x) = 0F for some a1 , a2 , . . . , an F . Plugging in x sj , for j {1, 2, . . . , n},

i=1

we get aj fj (sj ) = 0F , whence aj = 0F . Since this is true for every j = 1, 2, . . . , n, we get


a1 , a2 , . . . , an = 0F . That is, the polynomials f1 (x), f2 (x), . . . , fn (x) form an F -linearly independent
set.
Problem 10.20. Let R be a ring, and C is either Mod(R) or, if R is unital, UMod(R). Prove
that the following conditions on R are equivalent:
(i) Every object in C is projective;
(ii) Every short exact sequence of objects in C splits; and
(iii) Ever object in C is injective.
Solution: To show that (i) implies (ii) or that (iii) implies (ii) is easy. To show that (ii) implies
(i), let M be an object in C. Then, M is a homomorphic image of a free module F under an

R-module epimorphism . Therefore, we have a short exact sequence 0 ker()


F
M 0.
If (ii) holds, then the short exact sequence must split and F  ker() M . Consequently, M is
projective.
To show that (ii) implies (iii), we suppose that (ii) holds and let M be an object in C. Since M
can be embedded into an injective object I, say by an R-module monomorphism , we obtain the

short exact sequence 0 M


I  coker() 0, where the two-headed arrow represents the
canonical projection from I to I/ im() = coker(). By our hypothesis, the short exact sequence
splits, whence I = M coker(). Now, as M is a direct summand of an injective object, M itself
must then be injective.

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11

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Solutions to the Preliminary Final Examination

Problem 11.1. Describe (up to isomorphisms) all groups of order 153.


Solution: Let G be a group of order 153 = 32 17. Write m and n for the number of Sylow
3-subgroups and Sylow 17-subgroups of G. Using the Third Sylow Theorem, m 1 (mod 3) and
m divides |G|, whence m = 1. Similarly, n = 1. Therefore, there are a unique Sylow 3-subgroup H
and a unique Sylow 17-subgroup K of G, both of which are normal in G. Note that |H| = 32 = 9
and |K| = 17. Clearly, both H and K are abelian. By the Classification Theorem of Finitely
Generated Abelian Groups, we have H  C 3 C 3 or H  C 9 , and K  C 17 , where C n is the
cyclic group of order n N0 .
Now, G must then contain a subgroup N := H K isomorphic to H K (since H and K are normal
subgroups in G such that H K = {1G }). However, as |N | = |H| |K| = |G|, we conclude that
G = N  H K. That is, G is abelian, and we have G  C 3 C 3 C 17 or G  C 9 C 17 .
Problem 11.2. Prove that a solvable group is finite if and only if it has a composition series of finite
length. Give an example (with proof) of an infinite group which has a composition series of finite
length.
Solution: Let G be a solvable group. If it is finite, then it automatically has a composition series
of finite length (since all finite groups do). If it has a composition series
G =: G0 D G1 D G2 D . . . D Gl1 D Gl := {1G }

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for some l N0 , then we can assume by Schreiers Theorem that this is also a solvable series (i.e.,
each factor Gi1 /Gi for i = 1, 2, . . . , l is abelian); otherwise, we can find a common refinement of
this composition series and a solvable series of G. Thus, for i = 1, 2, . . . , l, Gi1 /Gi is the trivial
group or a simple abelian group, which has a prime order. Let pi := |Gi1 /Gi | for i = 1, 2, . . . , l.
It follows from Lagranges Theorem that
|G| = |G0 | = [G0 : G1 ] |G1 | = [G0 : G1 ] [G1 : G2 ] |G2 | = . . .
= [G0 : G1 ] [G1 : G2 ] [Gl1 : Gl ] |Gl | =

l
Y

[Gj1 : Gj ] ,

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j=1

because |Gl | = 1. That is, |G| =

l
Y

[Gj1 : Gj ] =

j=1

l
Y
j=1

|Gj1 /Gj | =

l
Y

pj < .

j=1

Now, for k N, write A k for the k-th alternating group. For m, n N with m n, consider the
group monomorphism m,n : A m A n sending each permutation A m to the permutation

A n such that
(i) := (i) for i = 1, 2, . . . , m, and
(i) = i for i = m + 1, m + 2, . . . , n.
def
The direct limit A == lim
A k under the embeddings {m,n | m, n N}, being the direct limit

kN

of simple groups, is a simple group. (To show this, suppose that N is a normal subgroup of A .
Then, for k N, we consider A k as a subgroup of A , so we see that Nk := N A k is a normal
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Thane V. Nampaisarn
n

subgroup of A k . For all integers k 5, A k is simple, so Nk = A k or Nk = 1A . If Nt = A t


for some t N with
all k o N with k 5, so N = A .
n t o 5, then it follows that Nk = A k for n
Otherwise, Nk = 1A for every k = 5, 6, . . ., whence N = 1A . Therefore, A is simple.)
n

Hence, a composition series of A is A =: A0 D A1 := 1A , which is of finite length.


Problem 11.3. Describe (with proof) all left ideals of the ring of matrices Mat33 (C).
Solution: For a ring R and n N0 , write Matnn (R) for the ring of n-by-n matrices with entries
in R. For a fixed n N0 and for a unital ring R, we claim that the set Ln of all left ideals of the
ring Mn := Matnn (R) is in a one-to-one correspondence with the set Sn of all left R-submodules
of the unitary left R-module Rn :=
each V Sn to the left ideal


fn (V ) :=

n
M

R and this bijection is given by fn : Sn Ln sending

r=1

[vi,j ]i[n],j[n] | for i, j [n], vi,j R, and, for i [n], (vi,1 , vi,2 , . . . , vi,n ) V

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where [n] denotes {1, 2, . . . , n}.


Firstly, it is obvious that fn is an injective function. Secondly, for V Sn and X fn (V ), then
x
1

we can write X =

x2 ,
..
.
xn

where xi = xi,1 xi,2

xi,n with (xi,1 , xi,2 , . . . , xi,n ) V for every

i [n]. Thus, if A Mn , then A = [ai,j ]i[n],j[n] , so that


X
n

AX=

a1,j xj

j=1

a2,j xj

,
j=1

..

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an,j xj

j=1

whence A X fn (V ). Clearly, fn (V ) is closed under addition. Therefore, fn (V ) is indeed a left


ideal of Mn .
Now, we must prove that all left ideals of Mn arise this way. Define gn : Ln Sn as follows: for
I Ln , let gn (I) be the
of Rn spanned over R by all elements of the form
h left R-submodules
i
(v1 , v2 , . . . , vn ), where v1 v2 vn is a row of a matrix in I. We claim that gn is the inverse
of fn . Obviously, gn fn = idSn . Furthermore, it is clear that, for every I Ln , I (fn gn ) (I),
so we need to verify that this is indeed an equality.
Let I Ln and Y I. For i, j [n], write Eji for the matrix with 1R at the (i, j)-entry and 0R
everywhere else. Observe that Eji Elk = jk Eli for i, j, k, l [n] (here,
is the Kronecke deltafor
X
k
k
j, k [n], j = 1R if j = k, and j = 0R if j , k). Hence, Y =
Yji Eji for some Yji R with
i,j[n]

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i, j [n]. Clearly, this means


d E Y =

d Yji E Eji =

d Yj Ej ,

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j[n]

i,j[n]

i,j[n]

d Yji i Ej =

for every , [n]. Thus, d E Y is the matrix whose -th row is the scalar multiplication on
the left by d of the -th row of Y, and whose other rows are all zero. What this means is that I
contains the left ideal J generated by matrices of the form Z, where R and Z is a matrix
one of whose rows is identical to a row of a matrix in I and whose other rows are all zero. However,
J (fn gn ) (I) by the definition. Therefore, I J (fn gn ) (I), and so we have the equality
I = (fn gn ) (I). Thus, fn gn = idLn , as desired. Hence, we have found all left ideals of Mn .
Alternative Solution: For a division ring D and n N0 , we consider elements of the matrix
ring Mn := Matnn (D) as left D-linear transformation in EndD (W ), where W := Dn . (This
proof requires the assumption that D is a division ring.) As before, let Ln be the set of all left
ideals of Mn and Sn the\set of all left D-vector subspaces of the left D-vector space W . Construct
Fn : Ln Sn via I 7
ker(T) for every I Ln . We shall show that Fn is a bijection with the
TI

inverse map Gn : Sn Ln sending V 7 {T Mn | V ker(T)} for all V Sn .


Firstly, it is trivial that V (Fn Gn ) (V ) for every V Sn . We claim that there exists a Dlinear transformation N Mn such that ker (V ) = V . Firstly, observe that the short exact

sequence 0 V
W  W/V 0 of D-vector spaces, where the two headed arrow represents
the quotient map. Since W/V is a D-vector space, which is a free object in the category of Dvector spaces, the short exact sequence splits, whence W is the internal direct sum V WV , where
WV is a D-vector subspace of W isomorphic to W/V . Define V Mn to be the composition
WV
WV
W = V WV
WV
V WV = W , where WV and W\
are the canonical projection and
V
the canonical injection, respectively. Then, V = ker (V )
ker(T) = (Fn Gn ) (V ) V .
TGn (V )

Hence, we have V =

ker(T) = (Fn Gn ) (V ).

TGn (V )

Now, we want to show that I = (Gn Fn ) (I) for every I Ln . Obviously, we have the inclusion
I (Gn Fn ) (I). From our work before, if (I) is the set of all possible rows that occur in the
matrices in I, then I contains any matrix whose rows are in (I). Furthermore, if t1 , t2 , . . . , tn are
the rows of T Mn , then ker(T) =

n
\

ker (ti ), where the ti are treated as D-linear transformations

i=1\

from W = Dn to D. Ergo, Fn (I) =

ker(T) =

TI

ker(r). It follows easily that (I) is a left

r(I)

D-vector space. If we can show that (I) contains any row matrix r such that ker(r) Fn (I), then
we are done, since (Gn Fn ) (I) is precisely the set of all matrices in Mn whose rows annihilate
Fn (I).

For I Ln , suppose m is the dimension of (I) over D. Then, dimD (Fn (I)) = dimD

ker(r)

r(I)

is equal to n m. The set Y (I) of row matrices r that annihilate Fn (I) is a left D-vector space
containing (I). Note that each r Y (I) must factor through W/Fn (I), i.e., there is a unique
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Thane V. Nampaisarn

homomorphism r : W/Fn (I) D of left D-vector spaces such that r Fn (I) = r, where
Fn (I) : W W/Fn (I) is the quotient map. On the other hand, any row in Y (I) must arise this
way. Therefore,
Y (I)

  HomD (W/Fn (I), D)  W/Fn (I) (as W/Fn (I) is finite-dimensional over
D), or dimD Y (I) = dimD (W/Fn (I)) = dimD (W ) dimD (Fn (I)) = n (n m) = m. Thus,


dimD Y (I) = dimD (I) . As (I) Y (I), we conclude that (I) = Y (I), and the proof is
complete.


Problem 11.4. Prove or disprove that C[x, y]/ (x + y)2


are indeterminates.


is a principal ideal ring, where x and y

Solution: We claim that the ring C[x, y]/ (x+y)2 is not a principal ideal ring. Firstly, we observe


that C[x, y]/ (x+y)2  C[u, v]/ u2 , where u and v are indeterminates, via the ring isomorphism


 




u + v  2
u v  2
sending z+ (x+y)2 7 z+ u2 , x+ (x+y)2 7
+ u and y+ (x+y)2 7
+ u ,
2
2
where z C.


Next, observe that C[u, v]/ u2 is isomorphic to the polynomial ring R[v] via the ring isomorphism


sending z + u2 z 1R , u + u2 7 u, and v + u2 7 v, where R := C[u]/ u2 C[u] , z C,




1R := 1+u2 C[u], and u := u+u2 C[u]. Note that R[v] is a commutative ring which is a C[v], C[v] bimodule with generators 1R and u, with the multiplication rule 1R 1R = 1R , 1R u = u = u 1R , and
u u = 0R , where 0R := u2 C[u]. Notice that elements of R[v] take the form p(v)1R + u q(v), where
p(v), q(v) C[v]. If p1 (v), p2 (v), q1 (v), q2 (v) C[v] satisfy p1 (v) 1R + u q1 (v) = p2 (v) 1R + u q2 (v),
then it follows immediately that p1 (v) = p2 (v) and q1 (v) = q2 (v). Our task now is to show that
R[v] is not a principal ideal ring.


Consider the ideal J := u v, v 2 1R of R[v]. If J is principal, then there are f (v), g(v) C[v] such
that J = ( f (v) 1R + u g(v))). Consequently, u v = ((v) 1R + u (v)) (f (v) 1R + u g(v)) and
v 2 1R = ((v) 1R + u (v)) (f (v) 1R + u g(v)), for some (v), (v), (v), (v) C[v]. That is,


u v = (v) f (v) 1R + u (v) f (v) + (v) g(v)

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and


v 2 1R = (v) f (v) 1R + u (v) f (v) + (v) g(v) .

The first equation implies that (v) f (v) = 0, while the second equation implies that f (v) , 0.
Thus, (v) = 0. That is, (v) f (v) = v, from the first equation. Without loss of generality, we
can assume that f (v) is monic. Hence, f (v) = 1 or f (v) = v.


If f (v) = 1, then we have 1R + u g(v) = f (v) 1R + u g(v) J = u v, v 2 . Then, for some


(v), (v), (v), (v) C[v], we must have


 

1R + u g(v) = (v) 1R + u (v) (


u v) + (v) 1R + u (v) v 2 1R


= v 2 (v) 1R + u v (v) + v 2 (v) .


Thus, 1 = v 2 (v), which clearly is absurd. Consequently, f (v) = v.
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Now, J = ( v 1R + u g(v))). Then, for some (v),

(v), (v), (v) C[v], we must have




 

v 1R + u g(v) = (v)
1R + u
(v) (
u v) + (v) 1R + u (v) v 2 1R


= v 2 (v) 1R + u v (v)
+ v 2 (v) .

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Hence, v = v 2 (v), a blatant contradiction. Therefore, J cannot be principal, so R[v] is not a


principal ideal ring.


According to this proof, we see that C[x, y]/ (x + y)2




 

is not a principal ideal ring. The ideal

I := x2 , x y, y 2 / (x + y)2 is an ideal of C[x, y]/ (x + y)2 which is not principal.




Alternative Solution: We start with C[x, y]/ (x + y)2

indeterminates, as before. We claim that the ideal (u, v)/ u2




 C[u, v]/ u2 , where u and v are




is not principal in C[u, v]/ u2 .

Suppose contrary that (u, v)/ u2 is principal in C[u, v]/ u2 . Therefore, there exists a polynomial


q(u, v) C[u, v] such that (u, v)/ u2 is generated by q(u, v) + u2 , or (u, v) = u2 , q(u, v) in
C[u, v]. Consequently,
u = u2 s(u, v) + q(u, v) t(u, v) and v = u2 (u, v) + q(u, v) (u, v)

(59)

for some s(u, v), t(u, v), (u, v), (u, v) C[u, v]. Without loss of generality, we may assume that
q(u, v) = q1 (v) + u q2 (v), t(u, v) = t1 (v) + u t2 (v), and (u, v) = 1 (v) + u 2 (v) for some
q1 (v), q2 (v), t1 (v), t2 (v), 1 (v), 2 (v) C[u, v]. That is,
u2 (s(u, v) + q2 (v) t2 (v)) + u (q2 (v) t1 (v) + q1 (v) t2 (v) 1) + (q1 (v) t1 (v)) = 0

(60)

u2 ((u, v) + q2 (v) 2 (v)) + u (q2 (v) 1 (v) + q1 (v) 2 (v)) + (q1 (v) 1 (v) v) = 0

(61)

and

The second equation suggests that q1 (v) 1 (v) = v; hence, we can assume without loss of generality
that q1 (v) = 1 or q1 (v) = v. Because the ideal (u, v) of C[u, v] is mapped to the zero ideal of C
under the evaluation homomorphism u 7 0 and v 7 0, we conclude that q1 (v) = v. The first
equation suggests that t1 (v) = 0 and q2 (v) t1 (v) + q1 (v) t2 (v) 1 = 0, so q2 (v) 0 + v t2 (v) 1 = 0,
or v t2 (v) = 1, a contradiction.


That is, C[u, v]/ u2 , whence also C[x, y]/ (x + y)2 , is not a principal ideal ring. This proof


suggests that the ideal (x, y)/ (x + y)2 of C[x, y]/ (x + y)2 is not principal.
Problem 11.5. Let R be a commutative unital ring. Prove that R is local if and only if, for every
r, s R, the condition r + s = 1R implies that either r or s is a unit in R.
Solution: If R is a local ring, then the set of all nonunits of R is the unique maximal ideal M
of R. Therefore, if r, s R such that r and s are nonunits, then we have r, s M . This means
r + s M . As 1R < M , we get that r + s , 1R . Hence, the direct implication is verified via
contrapositivity.
56

Algebra (Spring 2015)

Thane V. Nampaisarn

Now, to show the converse, assume that, for r, s R, if r + s = 1R , then r or s is a unit of R.


Let M be a maximal ideal of R. We want to show that 1R M = R , where R is the set of all
units of R. By the hypothesis, 1R M R . If there exists u R such that u < 1R M , then
1R u is a nonunit that is not in M . The ideal M + (1R u) R then properly contains M , whence
M + (1R u) R = R. That is, 1R = m + (1R u) for some m M and R. This means
(1R u) = 1R m R . Consequently, both 1R u and must be in R . This contradicts
the fact that 1R u is not a unit. That is, 1R M = R . Ergo, M = 1R R is the set of all
nonunits of R, and so, R is local.

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