Power-law bounds for critical long-range percolation

10 November 2020
Tom Hutchcroft

Further Information: 

Part of the Oxford Discrete Maths and Probability Seminar, held via Zoom. Please see the seminar website for details.


In long-range percolation on $\mathbb{Z}^d$, each potential edge $\{x,y\}$ is included independently at random with probability roughly $\beta\|x-y\|-d-\alpha$, where $\alpha > 0$ controls how long-range the model is and $\beta > 0$ is an intensity parameter. The smaller $\alpha$ is, the easier it is for very long edges to appear. We are normally interested in fixing $\alpha$ and studying the phase transition that occurs as $\beta$ is increased and an infinite cluster emerges. Perhaps surprisingly, the phase transition for long-range percolation is much better understood than that of nearest neighbour percolation, at least when $\alpha$ is small: It is a theorem of Noam Berger that if $\alpha < d$ then the phase transition is continuous, meaning that there are no infinite clusters at the critical value of $\beta$. (Proving the analogous result for nearest neighbour percolation is a notorious open problem!) In my talk I will describe a new, quantitative proof of Berger's theorem that yields power-law upper bounds on the distribution of the cluster of the origin at criticality.
    As a part of this proof, I will describe a new universal inequality stating that on any graph, the maximum size of a percolation cluster is of the same order as its median with high probability. This inequality can also be used to give streamlined new proofs of various classical results on e.g. Erdős-Rényi random graphs, which I will hopefully have time to talk a little bit about also.

  • Combinatorial Theory Seminar