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Preprint Number 350
350. A. Ould Houcine, D. Vallino
Algebraic and definable closure in free groups
Submission date: 30 August 2011.
We study algebraic closure and its relation with definable closure in free groups and more generally in torsion-free hyperbolic groups. Given a torsion-free hyperbolic group G and a nonabelian subgroup A of G, we describe G as a constructible group from the algebraic closure of A along cyclic subgroups. In particular, it follows that the algebraic closure of A is finitely generated, quasiconvex and hyperbolic.
Suppose that G is free. Then the definable closure of A is a free factor of the algebraic closure of A and the rank of these groups is bounded by that of G. We prove that the algebraic closure of A coincides with the vertex group containing A in the generalized cyclic JSJ-decomposition of G relative to A. If the rank of G is bigger than 4, then G has a subgroup A such that the definable closure of A is a proper subgroup of the algebraic closure of A. This answers a question of Sela.
Mathematics Subject Classification: 20B07, 20E05, 12L12, 20F65, 20E08, 20F67, 20F70
Keywords and phrases: free groups, torsion-free hyperbolic groups, algebraic closure, definable closure
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