Milnor conjecture (topology)

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For Milnor's conjecture about K-theory, see Milnor conjecture.

In knot theory, the Milnor conjecture says that the slice genus of the torus knot is

It is in a similar vein to the Thom conjecture.

It was first proved by gauge theoretic methods by Peter Kronheimer and Tomasz Mrowka.[1] Jacob Rasmussen later gave a purely combinatorial proof using Khovanov homology, by means of the s-invariant.[2]


  1. ^ Kronheimer, P. B.; Mrowka, T. S. (1993), "Gauge theory for embedded surfaces, I", Topology, 32 (4): 773–826, doi:10.1016/0040-9383(93)90051-V .
  2. ^ Rasmussen, Jacob A. (2004). "Khovanov homology and the slice genus". arXiv:math.GT/0402131free to read. .