W. H. Tutte's 1947 paper on a ring generated by graphs satisfying a contraction-deletion relation is extended to ribbon graphs. This ring of ribbon graphs is a polynomial ring on an infinite set of one-vertex ribbon graphs.

Author Bio

Daniel Thompson is currently a first-year graduate student at MIT. In the summer of 2010, he attended the NSF mathematics REU at Louisiana State University where he conducted the research for this paper under the guidance of Professor Neal W Stoltzfus. Daniel graduated from Yale in 2012, and also participated in the Budapest Semesters in Mathematics program during his undergraduate years. He is interested principally in algebraic geometry, topology, and representation theory.