Grothendieck group

Abelian group extending a commutative monoid / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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In mathematics, the Grothendieck group, or group of differences,[1] of a commutative monoid M is a certain abelian group. This abelian group is constructed from M in the most universal way, in the sense that any abelian group containing a homomorphic image of M will also contain a homomorphic image of the Grothendieck group of M. The Grothendieck group construction takes its name from a specific case in category theory, introduced by Alexander Grothendieck in his proof of the Grothendieck–Riemann–Roch theorem, which resulted in the development of K-theory. This specific case is the monoid of isomorphism classes of objects of an abelian category, with the direct sum as its operation.