We introduce an elementary method to study the border rank of polynomials and tensors, analogous to the apolarity lemma. This can be used to describe the border rank of all cases uniformly, including those very special ones that resisted a systematic approach. We also define a border rank version of the variety of sums of powers and analyze its usefulness in studying tensors and polynomials with large symmetries. In particular, it can be applied to provide lower bounds for the border rank of some interesting tensors, such as the matrix multiplication tensor. We work in a general setting, where the base variety is not necessarily a Segre or Veronese variety, but an arbitrary smooth toric projective variety. A critical ingredient of our work is an irreducible component of a multigraded Hilbert scheme related to the toric variety in question.
"Apolarity, border rank, and multigraded Hilbert scheme." Duke Math. J. 170 (16) 3659 - 3702, 1 November 2021. https://doi.org/10.1215/00127094-2021-0048