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 Folding free-group automorphisms

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We describe an algorithm that uses Stallings folding technique to decompose an element of $Aut(F n)$ as a product of Whitehead automorphisms (and hence as a product of Nielsen transformations.) We use this to give an alternative method of finding a finite generating set for the subgroup of $Aut(F n)$ that fixes a subset $Y$ of the basis elements, and the subgroup that fixes each element of $Y$ up to conjugacy. We show that the intersection of this latter subgroup with $IA n$ is also finitely generated.

Author: Richard D. Wade


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