ANALYTIC NUMBER THEORYMastermath course  Fall 2024  8EC[ Mastermath webpage  Course notes ] 
Schedule: 
Classes: Tuesdays September 10December 17, 14:0016:45 (24:45 pm),
Universiteit Utrecht (=UU), lecture room BBG 023 (Buys Ballot Gebouw) Usually, from 14:0015:45 there will be a lecture, and from 16:0016:45 an exercise class, where you can try some exercises under guidance of the assistants. Exam: Tuesday January 28, 2025, 14:0017:00 UU, room BOL 1.078.
Retake: Tuesday February 25, 2025, 14:0017:00 UU, room TBA.

Teachers and assistants: 
Teachers:
Dr. JanHendrik Evertse (Universiteit Leiden) email: evertse at math.leidenuniv.nl Dr. Lola Thompson (Universiteit Utrecht) email: L.Thompson at uu.nl
Assistants (responsible for the exercise classes and the grading of the
homework):

Examination: 
The examination will consist of a number of homework assignments and a written exam.

Old exams: 
Exam 20142015 (covers only the material on prime number theory)
Exam 20162017 (material covered by this exam partly differs from what we will do this year) Exam 20202021 (material covered by this exam partly differs from what we will do this year) Exam 20222023 (material covered by this exam partly differs from what we will do this year) 
Prerequisites: 
Analysis: differential and integral calculus
of real functions in several variables, convergence of series,
(uniform) convergence of sequences of functions.
It will be useful to have some knowledge of the basics of complex analysis. Everything needed from complex analysis is contained in Chapter 0.
Algebra: elementary group theory, mostly only about abelian groups. Chapter 0 of the course notes (see below) gives an overview of what will be used during the course. We will not discuss the contents of Chapter 0 and they will not be examined, but you are supposed to be familiar with the theorems and concepts discussed in Chapter 0. 
Course description: 
The first part of the course, taught by JanHendrik, is about prime number theory.
The ultimate goal is to prove the prime number theorem,
and more generally, the prime number theorem for arithmetic progressions.
The prime number theorem, proved by Hadamard and de la Valleé Poussin
in 1896, asserts that if π(x) denotes the number of primes
up to x, then
π(x)∼x/log x as x→∞, that is,
lim_{x→∞}π(x)(log x/x)=1.
The prime number theorem for arithmetic progressions, proved by
de la Valleé Poussin in 1899, can be stated as follows.
Let a,q be integers such that 0<a<q
and a is coprime with q and let
π(x;a,q) denote the number of primes not exceeding x
in the arithmetic progression a,a+q,a+2q,a+3q,... .
Let φ(q) denote the number of positive integers smaller than q that are coprime with q. Then π(x;a,q)∼φ(q)^{1}x/log x as x→∞.
This shows that roughly speaking, the primes are evenly distributed over
the prime residue classes modulo q.
We will start with elementary prime number theory and then discuss the necessary ingredients to prove the above results: Dirichlet series, Dirichlet characters, the Riemann zeta function and Lfunctions and properties thereof, in particular that (the analytic continuations of) the Lfunctions do not vanish on the line of complex numbers with real part equal to 1. We then prove the prime number theorem for arithmetic progressions by means of a relatively simple method based on complex analysis, developed by Newman around 1980. The second part, taught by Lola, is an introduction to sieve methods. Sieves are used to bound the size of a set after elements with certain ``undesirable" properties have been removed. Further details will follow. 
Course notes (pdf): 
JanHendrik's part:
In Chapter 0 we have collected some facts from algebra and analysis needed in the course. The contents of Chapter 0 will not be discussed in the course and they will not be examined, but all theorems, corollaries, concepts etc. are assumed to be known. You may use this as a reference source during the course.
Chapter 0: Notation and prerequisites
Lola's part:

Remarks: 
This course will probably not be given in 2025/2026.
This course is recommended for a Master's thesis project in Number Theory. 
Literature: 
Recommended for further reading:
This is a very readable book on sieve methods. ISBN 0521612756
This book discusses the properties of the Riemann zeta function, as well as those of Dirichlet Lfunctions. Further it gives the proofs of de la Vallée Poussin of the prime number theorem and the prime number theorem for arithmetic progressions. Lastly, it treats some sieve theory. ISBN 3540905332
In this book, Davenport considers various classes of Diophantine equations and inequalities to be solved in integers. Under certain hypotheses he shows that these are solvable and obtains asymptotic formulas for the number of solutions whose coordinates have absolute values at most X, as X→∞. A particular instance of this is Waring's problem, that for every positive integer k≥3 there is g such that every positive integer can be expressed as a sum of g nonnegative kth powers.The proofs are based on the circle method of Hardy and Littlewood. ISBN 0521605830
Online survey paper on estimates for π(x) (number of primes up to x) and related issues.
Classic book on the distribution of prime numbers. ISBN 0521397898
Analytic number theory bible, containing a lot of material. The proofs are rather sketchy. ISBN 0821836331
This book gives both a proof of the Prime Number Theorem based on complex analysis which is similar to the one we give during the course, as well as an elementary proof not using complex analysis. The book should be accessible to third year students. ISBN 0521891108
The third part contains analytic number theory related to algebraic number theory, such as Chebotarev's density theorem with proof, a proof of the functional equation of the Dedekind zeta function for algebraic number fields (this is a generalization of the Riemann zeta function), a proof of the functional equation for Lseries related to Hecke characters (generalizations of Dirichlet characters), a proof of the Prime Ideal Theorem (a generalization of the Prime Number Theorem). We will not discuss these topics during our course, but it is important related material. ISBN 0201042010
This book gives a comprehensive introduction to complex analysis. It includes topics relevant for number theory, such as elliptic functions and a simple proof of the Prime Number Theorem, due to Newman. ISBN 0387985921
This book discusses in detail the Riemann zeta function, Lfunctions, the Prime Number Theorem for arithmetic progressions and refinements thereof, and a brief introduction to sieve theory. ISBN10 0521849039
This book gives an introduction to analytic number theory, including a simple proof of the Prime Number Theorem, and various other topics, such as an asymptotic formula for the number of partitions, Waring's problem about the representation of integers by sums of kth powers, etc. ISBN 0387983082
This book focuses on elementary proofs of results from analytic number theory (largely avoiding complex analysis). ISBN 0821848801
The title speaks for itself. ISBN 0198533691
This book discusses several applications of the HardyLittlewood circle method, such as Diophantine equations and inequalities, Waring's problem (like Davenport's book above, but with more recent refinements) and the ternary Goldbach problem (that every odd integer larger than 5 is the sum of three primes). ISBN 0521573475 It may also be interesting to have a look at Riemann's memoir from 1859 (you can download both the original German version and its English translation), in which he proved several results on the function ζ(s)=∑_{n≥1} n^{s} and among other things formulated the Riemann Hypothesis (in a different but equivalent form). 
Useful websites: 
Official classification of mathematics subjects. Number theory is classified under no. 11.
Website for the number theory community with many useful links.
Long list of downloadable lecture notes on various branches of number theory including analytic number theory.
Online mathematical data bases which can be used to find abstracts of mathematical papers, lists of papers of mathematicians, etc. MathSciNet covers the period 1940... and Zentralblatt 1930... . MathSciNet is accessible only to subscribers. You may consult it through your department's network if your department has subscribed to it. Zentralblatt is now open access.
An archive with all sorts of facts from the history of mathematics, including biographies of the most important mathematicians.
Freely accessible mathematical preprints archive; number theory preprints are categorized under NT. 
Back to top  This website is maintained by JanHendrik Evertse. 