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Ordered groups, eigenvalues, knots, surgery and L-spaces

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 September 2011

ADAM CLAY
Affiliation:
Département de Mathématiques, Université du Québec à Montréal, Montréal, QC, CanadaH3C 3P8. e-mail: aclay@cirget.ca
DALE ROLFSEN
Affiliation:
Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences and Department of Mathematics, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, CanadaV6T 1Z2. e-mail: rolfsen@math.ubc.ca

Abstract

We establish a necessary condition that an automorphism of a nontrivial finitely generated bi-orderable group can preserve a bi-ordering: at least one of its eigenvalues, suitably defined, must be real and positive. Applications are given to knot theory, spaces which fibre over the circle and to the Heegaard–Floer homology of surgery manifolds. In particular, we show that if a nontrivial fibred knot has bi-orderable knot group, then its Alexander polynomial has a positive real root. This implies that many specific knot groups are not bi-orderable. We also show that if the group of a nontrivial knot is bi-orderable, surgery on the knot cannot produce an L-space, as defined by Ozsváth and Szabó.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge Philosophical Society 2011

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References

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