Low-light trees, and tight lower bounds for Euclidean spanners

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8 Scopus citations


We show that for every n-point metric space M and positive integer k, there exists a spanning tree T with unweighted diameter O(k) and weight w(T)=O(k{dot operator}n1/k){dot operator}w(MST(M)), and a spanning tree T′ with weight w(T′)=O(k){dot operator}w(MST(M)) and unweighted diameter O(k{dot operator}n1/k). These trees also achieve an optimal maximum degree. Furthermore, we demonstrate that these trees can be constructed efficiently. We prove that these tradeoffs between unweighted diameter and weight are tight up to constant factors in the entire range of parameters. Moreover, our lower bounds apply to a basic one-dimensional Euclidean space. Our lower bounds for the particular case of unweighted diameter O(log n) are of independent interest, settling a long-standing open problem in Computational Geometry. In STOC'95 Arya et al. devised a construction of Euclidean Spanners with unweighted diameter O(log n) and weight O(log n){dot operator}w(MST(M)). In SODA'05 Agarwal et al. showed that this result is tight up to a factor of O(log log n). We close this gap and show that the result of Arya et al. is tight up to constant factors. Finally, our upper bounds imply improved approximation algorithms for the minimumh-hop spanning tree and bounded diameter minimum spanning tree problems for metric spaces.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)736-783
Number of pages48
JournalDiscrete and Computational Geometry
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2010


  • Approximation algorithms
  • Computational geometry
  • Euclidean spanners
  • Hop-diameter
  • Low distortion embeddings

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Geometry and Topology
  • Discrete Mathematics and Combinatorics
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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