Open Access
1999 Jumping champions
Andrew Odlyzko, Michael Rubinstein, Marek Wolf
Experiment. Math. 8(2): 107-118 (1999).


The asymptotic frequency with which pairs of primes below x differ by some fixed integer is understood heuristically, although not rigorously, through the Hardy-Littlewood k-tuple conjecture. Less is known about the differences of consecutive primes. For all x between 1000 and $10^{12}$, the most common difference between consecutive primes is 6. We present heuristic and empirical evidence that 6 continues as the most common difference (jumping champion) up to about $x=1$.$7427\cdot10^{35}$, where it is replaced by 30. In turn, 30 is eventually displaced by 210, which is then displaced by 2310, and so on. Our heuristic arguments are based on a quantitative form of the Hardy-Littlewood conjecture. The technical difficulties in dealing with consecutive primes are formidable enough that even that strong conjecture does not suffice to produce a rigorous proof about the behavior of jumping champions.


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Andrew Odlyzko. Michael Rubinstein. Marek Wolf. "Jumping champions." Experiment. Math. 8 (2) 107 - 118, 1999.


Published: 1999
First available in Project Euclid: 12 March 2003

zbMATH: 0993.11045
MathSciNet: MR1700573

Primary: 11Y70
Secondary: 11N05

Rights: Copyright © 1999 A K Peters, Ltd.

Vol.8 • No. 2 • 1999
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