We prove a pointwise and average bound for the number of incidences between points and hyperplanes in vector spaces over finite fields. While our estimates are, in general, sharp, we observe an improvement for product sets and sets contained in a sphere. We use these incidence bounds to obtain significant improvements on the arithmetic problem of covering , the finite field with elements, by , where is a subset of sufficiently large size. We also use the incidence machinery and develop arithmetic constructions to study the Erdős-Falconer distance conjecture in vector spaces over finite fields. We prove that the natural analog of the Euclidean Erdős-Falconer distance conjecture does not hold in this setting. On the positive side, we obtain good exponents for the Erdős-Falconer distance problem for subsets of the unit sphere in and discuss their sharpness. This results in a reasonably complete description of the Erdős-Falconer distance problem in higher-dimensional vector spaces over general finite fields.
|Translated title of the contribution||Averages over hyperplanes, sum-product theory in vector spaces over finite fields and the Erdős-Falconer distance conjecture|
|Pages (from-to)||3255 - 3275|
|Number of pages||21|
|Journal||Transactions of the American Mathematical Society|
|Publication status||Published - Jun 2011|