Graph Minors and Minimum Degree

Gašper Fijavž, David R. Wood


Let $\mathcal{D}_k$ be the class of graphs for which every minor has minimum degree at most $k$. Then $\mathcal{D}_k$ is closed under taking minors. By the Robertson-Seymour graph minor theorem, $\mathcal{D}_k$ is characterised by a finite family of minor-minimal forbidden graphs, which we denote by $\widehat{\mathcal{D}}_k$. This paper discusses $\widehat{\mathcal{D}}_k$ and related topics. We obtain four main results:
We prove that every $(k+1)$-regular graph with less than $\frac{4}{3}(k+2)$ vertices is in $\widehat{\mathcal{D}}_k$, and this bound is best possible.
We characterise the graphs in $\widehat{\mathcal{D}}_{k+1}$ that can be obtained from a graph in $\widehat{\mathcal{D}}_k$ by adding one new vertex.
For $k\leq 3$ every graph in $\widehat{\mathcal{D}}_k$ is $(k+1)$-connected, but for large $k$, we exhibit graphs in $\widehat{\mathcal{D}}_k$ with connectivity $1$. In fact, we construct graphs in $\mathcal{D}_k$ with arbitrary block structure.
We characterise the complete multipartite graphs in $\widehat{\mathcal{D}}_k$, and prove analogous characterisations with minimum degree replaced by connectivity, treewidth, or pathwidth.

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