# abelian group is divisible if and only if it is an injective object

Abelian group  $A$ is divisible if and only if $A$ is an injective object in the category of abelian groups.

Proof. ,,$\Leftarrow$” Assume that $A$ is not divisible, i.e. there exists $a\in A$ and $n\in\mathbb{N}$ such that the equation $nx=a$ has no solution in $A$. Let $B=$ be a cyclic subgroup generated by $a$ and $i:B\to A$ the canonical inclusion. Now there are two possibilities: either $B$ is finite or infinite  .

If $B$ is infinite, then let $H=\mathbb{Z}$ and let $f:B\to H$ be defined on generator     by $f(a)=n$. Now $A$ is injective  , thus there exists $h:H\to A$ such that $h\circ f=i$. Thus

 $n\cdot h(1)=h(1)+\cdots+h(1)=h(1+\cdots+1)=h(n)=h(f(a))=i(a)=a.$

Contradiction   with definition of $n\in\mathbb{N}$ and $a\in A$.

If $B$ is finite, then let $k=|B|$ (note that $n$ does not divide $k$) and let $H=\mathbb{Z}_{n\cdot k}$. Furtheremore define $f:B\to H$ on generator by $f(a)=n$ (note that in this case $f$ is a well defined homomorphism         ). Again injectivity of $A$ implies existence of $h:H\to A$ such that $h\circ f=i$. Similarly we get contradiction:

 $n\cdot h(1)=h(1)+\cdots+h(1)=h(1+\cdots+1)=h(n)=h(f(a))=i(a)=a.$

,,$\Rightarrow$” This implication is proven here (http://planetmath.org/ExampleOfInjectiveModule). $\square$

Remark. It is clear that in the category of abelian groups $\mathcal{AB}$, a group $A$ is projective if and only if $A$ is free. This is since $\mathcal{AB}$ is equivalent     to the category  of $\mathbb{Z}$-modules and projective modules  are direct summands  of free modules   . Since $\mathbb{Z}$ is a principal ideal domain  , then every submodule of a free module is free, thus projective $\mathbb{Z}$-modules are free.

Title abelian group is divisible if and only if it is an injective object AbelianGroupIsDivisibleIfAndOnlyIfItIsAnInjectiveObject 2013-03-22 18:48:15 2013-03-22 18:48:15 joking (16130) joking (16130) 8 joking (16130) Theorem msc 20K99