Shortest division chains in imaginary quadratic number fields
Let O d be the set of algebraic integers in an imaginary quadratic number field Q[√d], d<0, where d is the discriminant of O d . Consider the Euclidean Algorithm (EA), applied to algebraic integers ξ, η ∈ O d . It consists in computing a sequence of remainders ρ0=ξ, ρ1=η, ρ2, ..., ρn+1=0, where ρi+1=ρi−1−γ i ρ i for algebraic integers γ i ∈ K, i=1, ..., n. We show that except for d=−11 the number of divisions to be carried out is always minimized by choosing each γ i such that N(ρi-1 - γ i ρ i ), the norm of γi-1 - γ i ρ i , is minimal. This result has been proven previously in special cases. It also applies to those imaginary quadratic number rings which are not Euclidean; in this case the division chains may be infinite. For d=−7, −8 the methods applied so far must be modified somewhat, and for d=−11 we provide a counterexample and a theorem which partially answers the question, how shortest division chains can be obtained.
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