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Concept# Composition series

Summary

In abstract algebra, a composition series provides a way to break up an algebraic structure, such as a group or a module, into simple pieces. The need for considering composition series in the context of modules arises from the fact that many naturally occurring modules are not semisimple, hence cannot be decomposed into a direct sum of simple modules. A composition series of a module M is a finite increasing filtration of M by submodules such that the successive quotients are simple and serves as a replacement of the direct sum decomposition of M into its simple constituents.
A composition series may not exist, and when it does, it need not be unique. Nevertheless, a group of results known under the general name Jordan–Hölder theorem asserts that whenever composition series exist, the isomorphism classes of simple pieces (although, perhaps, not their location in the composition series in question) and their multiplicities are uniquely determined. Composition series may thus be used

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The Grothendieck group of permutation modules for a finite group G becomes a biset functor when G is allowed to vary. All the composition factors of this biset functor are determined.

Let k be a field of characteristic p, where p is a prime number, let pp_k(G) be the Grothendieck group of p-permutation kG-modules, where G is a finite group, and let Cpp_k(G) be pp_k(G) tensored with the field of complex numbers C. In this article, we find all the composition factors of the biset functor Cpp_k restricted to the category of abelian groups.

Let k be an algebraically closed field of characteristic p, where p is a prime number or 0. Let G be a finite group and ppk(G) be the Grothendieck group of p-permutation kG-modules. If we tensor it with C, then Cppk becomes a C-linear biset functor. Recall that the simple biset functor SH,V are parametrized by pairs (H,V), where H is a finite group and V a simple COut(H)-module. If we only consider p'-groups, then Cppk = CRk is the usual representation functor and we know the simple functors which are its composition factors. If we consider only p-groups, then Cppk = CB is the Burnside functor and we also know the simple functors which are its composition factors. We want to find the composition factors of Cppk in general. In order to achieve this, we first show that the composition factors from the special cases above are also composition factors for Cppk. Then, we consider groups of little order and try to find new composition factors. This leads us to find the following new composition factors : The simple factors SCm,Cξ and SCp×Cp× Cm,Cξ, where (m,ξ) runs over the set of all pairs formed by a positive integer m prime to p and a primitive character ξ : (Z/mZ)* → C*. Their multiplicity as composition factors is 1. The simple factors SCp⋊Cl, C, where l is a number prime to p, the action of Cl on Cp is faithful and C is the trivial COut(Cp ⋊ Cl)-module. Their multiplicity as composition factors is φ(l). The simple functors SG,C, where G is a finite p-hypo-elementary B-group (for which an explicit classification is done) and C the trivial COut(G)-module. We also show that some specific simple functors appear, indexed by the groups C3 ⋊ C4, C5 ⋊ C4 and A4. On the way, we find all the composition factors of the subfunctor of permutation modules.