Foundations for a Theory of Complex Matroids

Anderson, Laura and Delucchi, Emanuele (2012) Foundations for a Theory of Complex Matroids. Discrete & Computational Geometry. ISSN 0179-5376

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We explore a combinatorial theory of linear dependency in complex space, complex matroids, with foundations analogous to those for oriented matroids. We give multiple equivalent axiomatizations of complex matroids, showing that this theory captures properties of linear dependency, orthogonality, and determinants over C in much the same way that oriented matroids capture the same properties over R. In addition, our complex matroids come with a canonical circle action analogous to the action of C* on a complex vector space. Our phirotopes (analogs of determinants) are the same as those studied previously by Below, Krummeck, and Richter-Gebert (Discrete and Computational Geometry, Springer, pp. 203–233, 2003) and Delucchi (Diploma Thesis, ETH Zurich, 2003). We further show that complex matroids cannot have vector axioms analogous to those for oriented matroids.

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