# Hopf Algebra - Formal Definition

Formal Definition

Formally, a Hopf algebra is a (associative and coassociative) bialgebra H over a field K together with a K-linear map S: HH (called the antipode) such that the following diagram commutes:

Here Δ is the comultiplication of the bialgebra, ∇ its multiplication, η its unit and ε its counit. In the sumless Sweedler notation, this property can also be expressed as

As for algebras, one can replace the underlying field K with a commutative ring R in the above definition.

The definition of Hopf algebra is self-dual (as reflected in the symmetry of the above diagram), so if one can define a dual of H (which is always possible if H is finite-dimensional), then it is automatically a Hopf algebra.

Read more about this topic:  Hopf Algebra

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