Complexity of propositional proofs under a promise

Nachum Dershowitz*, Iddo Tzameret

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We studywithin the framework of propositional proof complexitythe problem of certifying unsatisfiability of CNF formulas under the promise that any satisfiable formula has many satisfying assignments, where many stands for an explicitly specified function in the number of variables n. To this end, we develop propositional proof systems under different measures of promises (i.e., different ) as extensions of resolution. This is done by augmenting resolution with axioms that, roughly, can eliminate sets of truth assignments defined by Boolean circuits. We then investigate the complexity of such systems, obtaining an exponential separation in the average case between resolution under different size promises: (1) Resolution has polynomial-size refutations for all unsatisfiable 3CNF formulas when the promise is 2n, for any constant 0<<1. (2) There are no subexponential size resolution refutations for random 3CNF formulas, when the promise is 2Δ n, for any constant 0<Δ<1 (and the number of clauses is O(n3/2-), for 0<<1/2). Goods Satisfactory or Money Refunded The Eaton Promise

Original languageEnglish
Article number18
JournalACM Transactions on Computational Logic
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 May 2010


  • Promise problems
  • Propositional proof complexity
  • Random 3CNF
  • Resolution


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