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Abstract. A (cyclic) n-bit Gray code is a (cyclic) ordering of all 2 n binary strings of length n such that consecutive strings differ in a single bit. Equivalently, an n-bit Gray code can be viewed as a Hamiltonian path of the n-dimensional hypercube Qn, and a cyclic Gray code as a Hamiltonian cycle of Qn. In this paper we study Hamiltonian paths and cycles of Qn avoiding a given set of faulty edges that form a matching, briefly called (cyclic) Gray codes faulting a given matching. Given a matching M and two vertices u, v of Qn, n ≥ 4, our main result provides a necessary and sufficient condition, expressed in terms of forbidden configurations for M, for the existence of a Gray code between u and v faulting M. As a corollary, we obtain a similar characterization for a cyclic Gray code faulting M. In particular, in case that M is a perfect matching, Qn has a (cyclic) Gray code faulting M if and only if Qn − M is a connected graph. This complements a recent result of Fink, who proved that every perfect matching of Qn can be extended to a Hamiltonian cycle

Topics:
Key words. hypercube, Gray code, Hamiltonian paths, Hamiltonian cycles

Year: 2007

OAI identifier:
oai:CiteSeerX.psu:10.1.1.417.8141

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