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Concept# Homeomorphism (graph theory)

Summary

In graph theory, two graphs and are homeomorphic if there is a graph isomorphism from some subdivision of to some subdivision of . If the edges of a graph are thought of as lines drawn from one vertex to another (as they are usually depicted in illustrations), then two graphs are homeomorphic to each other in the graph-theoretic sense precisely if they are homeomorphic in the topological sense.
In general, a subdivision of a graph G (sometimes known as an expansion) is a graph resulting from the subdivision of edges in G. The subdivision of some edge e with endpoints {u,v } yields a graph containing one new vertex w, and with an edge set replacing e by two new edges, {u,w } and {w,v }.
For example, the edge e, with endpoints {u,v }:
can be subdivided into two edges, e1 and e2, connecting to a new vertex w:
The reverse operation, smoothing out or smoothing a vertex w with regards to the pair of edges (e1, e2) incident on w, removes both edges containing w and replaces (e1, e2) with a new edge that connects the other endpoints of the pair. Here, it is emphasized that only degree-2 (i.e., 2-valent) vertices can be smoothed.
For example, the simple connected graph with two edges, e1 {u,w } and e2 {w,v }:
has a vertex (namely w) that can be smoothed away, resulting in:
Determining whether for graphs G and H, H is homeomorphic to a subgraph of G, is an NP-complete problem.
The barycentric subdivision subdivides each edge of the graph. This is a special subdivision, as it always results in a bipartite graph. This procedure can be repeated, so that the nth barycentric subdivision is the barycentric subdivision of the n−1st barycentric subdivision of the graph. The second such subdivision is always a simple graph.
It is evident that subdividing a graph preserves planarity. Kuratowski's theorem states that
a finite graph is planar if and only if it contains no subgraph homeomorphic to K5 (complete graph on five vertices) or K3,3 (complete bipartite graph on six vertices, three of which connect to each of the other three).

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Related concepts (25)

Homeomorphism (graph theory)

In graph theory, two graphs and are homeomorphic if there is a graph isomorphism from some subdivision of to some subdivision of . If the edges of a graph are thought of as lines drawn from one vertex to another (as they are usually depicted in illustrations), then two graphs are homeomorphic to each other in the graph-theoretic sense precisely if they are homeomorphic in the topological sense. In general, a subdivision of a graph G (sometimes known as an expansion) is a graph resulting from the subdivision of edges in G.

Graph minor

In graph theory, an undirected graph H is called a minor of the graph G if H can be formed from G by deleting edges, vertices and by contracting edges. The theory of graph minors began with Wagner's theorem that a graph is planar if and only if its minors include neither the complete graph K5 nor the complete bipartite graph K3,3. The Robertson–Seymour theorem implies that an analogous forbidden minor characterization exists for every property of graphs that is preserved by deletions and edge contractions.

Wagner's theorem

In graph theory, Wagner's theorem is a mathematical forbidden graph characterization of planar graphs, named after Klaus Wagner, stating that a finite graph is planar if and only if its minors include neither K5 (the complete graph on five vertices) nor K3,3 (the utility graph, a complete bipartite graph on six vertices). This was one of the earliest results in the theory of graph minors and can be seen as a forerunner of the Robertson–Seymour theorem.

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