Kevin McGown


CSU Chico


Thursday, October 10, 2019 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm



RH 440R
Let $p$ be an odd prime. A classical problem in analytic number theory is to give an upper bound on the least primitive root modulo $p$, denoted by $g(p)$. In the 1960s Burgess proved that for any $\varepsilon>0$ one has $g(p)\ll p^{1/4+\varepsilon}$ for sufficiently large $p$. This was a consequence of his landmark character sum inequality, and this result remains the state of the art. However, in applications, explicit estimates are often required, and one needs more than an implicit constant that depends on $\varepsilon$. Recently, Trudgian and the speaker have given an explicit upper bound on $g(p)$ that improves (by a small power of log factor) on what one can obtain using any existing version of the Burgess inequality. In particular, we show that $g(p)<2r\,2^{r\omega(p-1)}p^{\frac{1}{4}+\frac{1}{4r}}$ for $p>10^{56}$, where $r\geq 2$ is an integer parameter. \[ \ \] In 1952 Grosswald showed that if $g(p)<\sqrt{p}-2$, then the principal congruence subgroup $\Gamma(p)$ for can be generated by the matrix $[1,p;0,1]$ and $p(p-1)(p+1)/12$ other hyperbolic matrices. He conjectured that $g(p)<\sqrt{p}-2$ for $p>409$. Our method allows us to show that Grosswald's conjecture holds unconditionally for $p> 10^{56}$, improving on previous results.