Semiarcs with Long Secants

  • Bence Csajbók
Keywords: Collineation group, Blocking set, Semioval


In a projective plane $\Pi_q$ of order $q$, a non-empty point set $\mathcal{S}_t$ is a $t$-semiarc if the number of tangent lines to $\mathcal{S}_t$ at each of its points is $t$. If $\mathcal{S}_t$ is a $t$-semiarc in $\Pi_q$, $t<q$, then each line intersects $\mathcal{S}_t$ in at most $q+1-t$ points. Dover proved that semiovals (semiarcs with $t=1$) containing $q$ collinear points exist in $\Pi_q$ only if $q\leq 3$. We show that if $t>1$, then $t$-semiarcs with $q+1-t$ collinear points exist only if $t\geq \sqrt{q-1}$. In $\mathrm{PG}(2,q)$ we prove the lower bound $t\geq(q-1)/2$, with equality only if $\mathcal{S}_t$ is a blocking set of Rédei type of size $3(q+1)/2$.

We call the symmetric difference of two lines, with $t$ further points removed from each line, a $V_t$-configuration. We give conditions ensuring a $t$-semiarc to contain a $V_t$-configuration and give the complete characterization of such $t$-semiarcs in $\mathrm{PG}(2,q)$.

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