Frobenius Algebras and Skein Modules of Surfaces in 3-Manifolds

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For each (commutative) Frobenius algebra there is defined a skein module of surfaces embedded in a given 3-manifold and bounding a prescribed curve system in the boundary. The skein relations are local and generate the kernel of a certain natural extension of the corresponding topological quantum field theory. In particular the skein module of the 3-ball is isomorphic to the ground ring of the Frobenius algebra. We prove a presentation theorem for the skein module with generators incompressible surfaces colored by elements of a generating set of the Frobenius algebra, and with relations determined by tubing geometry in the manifold and relations of the algebra.