Real Algebraic and Analytic Geometry
Submission: 2009, December 23.
There are strong analogies between groups definable in o-minimal structures and real Lie groups. Nevertheless, unlike the real case, not every definable group has maximal definably compact subgroups. We study definable groups G which are not definably compact showing that they have a unique maximal normal definable torsion-free subgroup N; the quotient G/N always has maximal definably compact subgroups, and for every such a K there is a maximal definable torsion-free subgroup H such that G/N can be decomposed as G/N = KH, and the intersection between K and H is trivial. Thus G is definably homotopy equivalent to K. When G is solvable then G/N is already definably compact. In any case (even when G has no maximal definably compact subgroup) we find a definable Lie-like decomposition of G where the role of maximal tori is played by maximal 0-subgroups.
Mathematics Subject Classification (2000): 03C64, 22E15.
Keywords and Phrases: o-minimality, definable groups, real Lie groups.
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