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Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 July 2023

School of Mathematical Sciences, Hebei Workstation for Foreign Academicians, Hebei Normal University, Shijiazhuang 050024, PR China e-mail:
School of Mathematical Sciences, Chongqing Normal University, Chongqing 401331, PR China


In 2019, Andrews and Newman [‘Partitions and the minimal excludant’, Ann. Comb. 23(2) (2019), 249–254] introduced the arithmetic function $\sigma \textrm {mex}(n)$, which denotes the sum of minimal excludants over all the partitions of n. Baruah et al. [‘A refinement of a result of Andrews and Newman on the sum of minimal excludants’, Ramanujan J., to appear] showed that the sum of minimal excludants over all the partitions of n is the same as the number of partition pairs of n into distinct parts. They proved three congruences modulo $4$ and $8$ for two functions appearing in this refinement and conjectured two further congruences modulo $8$ and $16$. We confirm these two conjectures by using q-series manipulations and modular forms.

Research Article
© The Author(s), 2023. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of Australian Mathematical Publishing Association Inc.

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Julia Q. D. Du was partially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 12201177), the Hebei Natural Science Foundation (No. A2021205018), the Science and Technology Project of Hebei Education Department (No. BJK2023092), the Doctor Foundation of Hebei Normal University (No. L2021B02), the Program for Foreign Experts of Hebei Province and the Program for 100 Foreign Experts Plan of Hebei Province. Dazhao Tang was partially supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 12201093), the Natural Science Foundation Project of Chongqing CSTB (No. CSTB2022NSCQ-MSX0387), the Science and Technology Research Program of Chongqing Municipal Education Commission (No. KJQN202200509) and the Doctoral start-up research Foundation (No. 21XLB038) of Chongqing Normal University.


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