Decompositions of Augmented Bergman Complexes

  • R. Amzi Jeffs


The augmented Bergman complex of a closure operator on a finite set interpolates between the order complex of proper flats and the independence complex of the operator. In 2020, Braden, Huh, Matherne, Proudfoot, and Wang showed that augmented Bergman complexes of matroids are always gallery-connected, and recently Bullock, Kelley, Reiner, Ren, Shemy, Shen, Sun, Tao, and Zhang strengthened "gallery-connected" to "shellable" by providing two classes of shelling orders: "flag-to-basis" shellings and "basis-to-flag" shellings. 

We show that augmented Bergman complexes of matroids are vertex decomposable, a stronger property than shellable. We also prove that the augmented Bergman complex of any closure operator is shellable if and only if the order complex of its lattice of flats (that is, its non-augmented Bergman complex) is shellable. As a consequence, an augmented Bergman complex is shellable if and only if it admits a flag-to-basis shelling. Perhaps surprisingly, the same does not hold for basis-to-flag shellings: we describe a closure operator whose augmented Bergman complex is shellable, but has no shelling order with bases appearing first. 

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