Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Mathematical Sciences (PhD)

College, School or Department Name

Department of Mathematical Sciences


Vladimir Tonchev


This dissertation concerns the intersection of three areas of discrete mathematics: finite geometries, design theory, and coding theory. The central theme is the power of finite geometry designs, which are constructed from the points and t-dimensional subspaces of a projective or affine geometry. We use these designs to construct and analyze combinatorial objects which inherit their best properties from these geometric structures.

A central question in the study of finite geometry designs is Hamada’s conjecture, which proposes that finite geometry designs are the unique designs with minimum p-rank among all designs with the same parameters. In this dissertation, we will examine several questions related to Hamada’s conjecture, including the existence of counterexamples. We will also study the applicability of certain decoding methods to known counterexamples.

We begin by constructing an infinite family of counterexamples to Hamada’s conjecture. These designs are the first infinite class of counterexamples for the affine case of Hamada’s conjecture. We further demonstrate how these designs, along with the projective polarity designs of Jungnickel and Tonchev, admit majority-logic decoding schemes. The codes obtained from these polarity designs attain error-correcting performance which is, in certain cases, equal to that of the finite geometry designs from which they are derived. This further demonstrates the highly geometric structure maintained by these designs.

Finite geometries also help us construct several types of quantum error-correcting codes. We use relatives of finite geometry designs to construct infinite families of q-ary quantum stabilizer codes. We also construct entanglement-assisted quantum error-correcting codes (EAQECCs) which admit a particularly efficient and effective error-correcting scheme, while also providing the first general method for constructing these quantum codes with known parameters and desirable properties. Finite geometry designs are used to give exceptional examples of these codes.

Included in

Mathematics Commons