Monochromatic arithmetic progressions in automatic sequences with group structure

Aedo, Ibai; Grimm, Uwe; Mañibo, Neil; Nagai, Yasushi and Staynova, Petra (2024). Monochromatic arithmetic progressions in automatic sequences with group structure. Journal of Combinatorial Theory, Series A, 203, article no. 105831.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jcta.2023.105831

Abstract

We determine asymptotic growth rates for lengths of monochromatic arithmetic progressions in certain automatic sequences. In particular, we look at (one-sided) fixed points of aperiodic, primitive, bijective substitutions and spin substitutions, which are generalisations of the Thue-Morse and Rudin-Shapiro substitutions, respectively. For such infinite words, we show that there exists a subsequence {dn} of differences along which the maximum length A (dn) of a monochromatic arithmetic progression (with fixed difference dn) grows at least polynomially in dn. Explicit upper and lower bounds for the growth exponent can be derived from a finite group associated to the substitution. As an application, we obtain bounds for a van der Waerden-type number for a class of colourings parametrised by the size of the alphabet and the length of the substitution.

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