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Russo-Seymour-Welsh estimates for the Kostlan ensemble of random polynomials

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Dmitry Beliaev, Stephen Muirhead, Igor Wigman

Original languageEnglish
JournalAnnales de l’Institut Henri Poincaré, Probabilités et Statistiques
Accepted/In press10 Dec 2020

King's Authors


Beginning with the predictions of Bogomolny-Schmit for the random plane wave, in recent years the deep connections between the level sets of smooth Gaussian random fields and percolation have become apparent. In classical percolation theory a key input into the analysis of global connectivity are scale-independent bounds on crossing probabilities in the critical regime, known as Russo-Seymour-Welsh (RSW) estimates. Similarly, establishing RSW-type estimates for the nodal sets of Gaussian random fields is a major step towards a rigorous understanding of these relations.

The Kostlan ensemble is an important model of Gaussian homogeneous random polynomials. The nodal set of this ensemble is a natural model for a "typical" real projective hypersurface, whose understanding can be considered as a statistical version of Hilbert's 16th problem. In this paper we establish RSW-type estimates for the nodal sets of the Kostlan ensemble in dimension two, providing a rigorous relation between random algebraic curves and percolation. The estimates are uniform with respect to the degree of the polynomials, and are valid on all relevant scales; this, in particular, resolves an open question raised recently by Beffara-Gayet. More generally, our arguments yield RSW estimates for a wide class of Gaussian ensembles of smooth random functions on the sphere or the flat torus.

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