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In the geometric version of the Langlands correspondence, irregular singular point connections play the role of Galois representations with wild ramification. In this paper, we develop a geometric theory of fundamental strata to study irregular singular connections on the projective line. Fundamental strata were originally used to classify cuspidal representations of the general linear group over a local field. In the geometric setting, fundamental strata play the role of the leading term of a connection. We introduce the concept of a regular stratum, which allows us to generalize the condition that a connection has regular semisimple leading term to connections with nonintegral slope. Finally, we construct a moduli space of meromorphic connections on the projective line with specified formal type at the singular points. © 2012 The Author(s).

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International Mathematics Research Notices

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