Combinatorial Derived Matroids

  • Ragnar Freij-Hollanti
  • Relinde Jurrius
  • Olga Kuznetsova


Let $M$ be an arbitrary matroid with circuits $\mathcal{C}(M)$. We propose a definition of a derived matroid $\delta M$ that has as its ground set $\mathcal{C}(M)$. Unlike previous attempts of such a definition, our definition applies to arbitrary matroids, and is completely combinatorial. We prove that the rank of $\delta M$ is bounded from above by $\lvert M\rvert-r(M)$ and that it is connected if and only if $M$ is connected. We compute examples including the derived matroids of uniform matroids, the Vámos matroid and the graphical matroid $M(K_4)$. We formulate conjectures relating our construction to previous definitions of derived matroids.

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