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Rational Catalan Combinatorics: The Associahedron

Abstract : Each positive rational number $x>0$ can be written $\textbf{uniquely}$ as $x=a/(b-a)$ for coprime positive integers 0<$a$<$b$. We will identify $x$ with the pair $(a,b)$. In this extended abstract we use $\textit{rational Dyck paths}$ to define for each positive rational $x>0$ a simplicial complex $\mathsf{Ass} (x)=\mathsf{Ass} (a,b)$ called the $\textit{rational associahedron}$. It is a pure simplicial complex of dimension $a-2$, and its maximal faces are counted by the $\textit{rational Catalan number}$ $\mathsf{Cat} (x)=\mathsf{Cat}(a,b):=\frac{(a+b-1)! }{ a! b!}.$ The cases $(a,b)=(n,n+1)$ and $(a,b)=(n,kn+1)$ recover the classical associahedron and its Fuss-Catalan generalization studied by Athanasiadis-Tzanaki and Fomin-Reading. We prove that $\mathsf{Ass} (a,b)$ is shellable and give nice product formulas for its $h$-vector (the $\textit{rational Narayana numbers}$) and $f$-vector (the $\textit{rational Kirkman numbers}$). We define $\mathsf{Ass} (a,b)$ .
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https://hal.inria.fr/hal-01229692
Contributor : Alain Monteil <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, November 17, 2015 - 10:20:02 AM
Last modification on : Saturday, February 27, 2021 - 4:02:05 PM
Long-term archiving on: : Thursday, February 18, 2016 - 11:39:48 AM

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Drew Armstrong, Brendon Rhoades, Nathan Williams. Rational Catalan Combinatorics: The Associahedron. 25th International Conference on Formal Power Series and Algebraic Combinatorics (FPSAC 2013), 2013, Paris, France. pp.933-944. ⟨hal-01229692⟩

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