Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Kuratowski closure axiom

In topology and related branches of mathematics, the Kuratowski closure axioms are a set of axioms that allow one to define a topology on a set. They were first introduced by Kazimierz Kuratowski, in a slightly different form that applied only to Hausdorff spaces.

In general topology, if X is a topological space and A is a subset of X, then the closure of A in X is defined to be the smallest closed set containing A, or equivalently, the intersection of all closed sets containing A. The closure operator c that assigns to each subset of A its closure c(A) is thus a function from the power set of X to itself. The closure operator satisfies the following axioms:

  1. Isotonicity: Every set is contained in its closure.
  2. Idempotence: The closure of the closure of a set is equal to the closure of that set.
  3. Preservation of binary unions: The closure of the union of two sets is the union of their closures.
  4. Preservation of nullary unions: The closure of the empty set is empty.

In symbols:
  1. ;
  2. ;
  3. ;
  4. .

The closed sets can now be defined as the fixed points of this operator; i.e., all A such that c(A) = A. Similar sets of axioms exist for other operators.

Axioms (3) and (4) can be generalised (using a proof by mathematical induction) to the single statement:

An operator that satisfies only axioms (1) and (2) is called a Moore closure. Moore closure operators are often studied in lattice theory.