Oct 23 – 25, 2017
Université d'Angers
Europe/Paris timezone

The Milnor-Thurston determinant and the Ruelle transfer operator.

Oct 23, 2017, 2:30 PM
L003 (Université d'Angers)


Université d'Angers

2 Boulevard Lavoisier 49000 Angers


Hans Henrik Rugh (Université de Paris-Sud, Orsay)


The topological entropy $\htop$ of a continuous piecewise monotone interval map measures the exponential growth in the number of monotonicity intervals for iteratesof the map. Milnor and Thurston showed that $\exp(-\htop)$ is the smallest zero of an analytic function, now coined the Milnor-Thurston determinant, that keeps track of relative positions of forward orbits of critical points. On the other hand $\exp(\htop)$ equals the spectral radius of a Ruelle transfer operator $L$, associated with the map. Iterates of $L$ keep track of inverse orbits of the map. For no obvious reason, a Fredholm determinant for the transfer operator has not only the same leading zero as the M-T determinant but all peripheral (those lying in the unit disk) zeros are the same. In the talk I will show that on a suitable function space, the dual of the Ruelle transfer operator has a regularized determinant, identical to the Milnor-Thurston determinant, hereby providing a natural explanation for the above puzzle. This work was inspired by a collaboration with Tan Lei in 2014.

Primary author

Hans Henrik Rugh (Université de Paris-Sud, Orsay)

Presentation materials