Title: Codes from zero-divisors and units in group rings

Authors: Paul Hurley, Ted Hurley

Addresses: IBM Research, Zurich Research Laboratory, Sauermerstrasse 4, 8803 Rueschlikon, Switzerland. ' Department of Mathematics, National University of Ireland, Galway, Ireland

Abstract: A new construction method for codes using encodings from group rings is described and presented. They consist primarily of two types: zero-divisor and unit derived codes. Previous codes from group rings focused on ideals; for example, cyclic codes are ideals in the group ring over a cyclic group. The fresh focus is on the encodings themselves, which only under very limited conditions result in ideals. The authors use the result that a group ring is isomorphic to a certain well-defined ring of matrices and thus, every group ring element has an associated matrix. This allows matrix algebra to be used as needed in the study and production of codes, enabling the creation of standard generator and check matrices. Group rings are a fruitful source of units and zero-divisors from which new codes result. Many code properties, such as being LDPC or self-dual, may be expressed as properties within the group ring, thus enabling the construction of codes with these properties. The methods are general enabling the construction of codes with many types of group rings. There is no restriction on the ring and thus codes over the integers, over matrix rings or even over group rings themselves are possible and fruitful.

Keywords: group rings; coding theory; group algebras; LDPC; self-duality; unit-derived codes; zero-divisor codes; low-density parity-check.

DOI: 10.1504/IJICOT.2009.024047

International Journal of Information and Coding Theory, 2009 Vol.1 No.1, pp.57 - 87

Published online: 24 Mar 2009 *

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