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Surjectivity and equidistribution of the word x^ay^b on PSL(2,q) and SL(2,q)

Shelly Garion, Tatiana Bandman
published 2011-10-10

We determine the positive integers a,b and the prime powers q for which the word map w(x,y)=x^ay^b is surjective on the group PSL(2,q) (and SL(2,q)). We moreover show that this map is almost equidistributed for the family of groups PSL(2,q) (and SL(2,q)). Our proof is based on the investigation of the trace map of positive words.

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