Ergodic Theory and Dynamical Systems

Morphisms from non-periodic \mathbb{Z}^{2} subshifts I: constructing embeddings from homomorphisms

a1 University of Victoria, Victoria, Canada (e-mail:


In this paper we introduce foundational techniques and prove the following: if X is a \mathbb{Z}^d subshift without periodic points, if Y is a \mathbb{Z}^d square mixing subshift of finite type containing a finite orbit and if there exists a homomorphism X\rightarrow Y, then X embeds into Y if and only if h(X)<h(Y). For the proof, clopen markers are used to generate Voronoi tiles whose thickened boundaries are coded using the homomorphism. The entropy gap and the square mixing permit the construction of an injective code on the tile interiors. A second paper will show that \mathbb{Z}^2 square filling mixing shifts of finite type are square mixing and that homomorphisms exist, resulting in an extension of Krieger's Embedding Theorem to \mathbb{Z}^2 subshifts.

(Received March 16 1999)
(Revised August 26 2002)