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41
votes
13answers
6k views

What are some of the big open problems in 3-manifold theory?

From what I understand, the geometrization theorem and its proof helped to settle a lot of outstanding questions about the geometry and topology of 3-manifolds, but there still seems to be quite a lot ...
23
votes
0answers
2k views

Are there lots of integer homology three-spheres?

The problem of counting combinatorial three-spheres with $N$ simplices has implications for some partition functions in physics (see a paper by Benedetti and Ziegler for more background and ...
14
votes
6answers
2k views

Diffeomorphism of 3-manifolds

Surgery theory aims to measure the difference between simple homotopy types and diffeomorphism types. In 3 dimensions, geometrization achieves something much more nuanced than that. Still, I wonder ...
21
votes
2answers
2k views

Elevator pitch for the Virtual Fibering Theorem

There has been a great deal of excitement among topologists about the proof of the Virtual Haken Theorem, and in fact of the Virtual Fibering Theorem (for closed hyperbolic 3-manifolds, but I'm ...
10
votes
3answers
702 views

Is the cut locus of a generic point in a hyperbolic manifold a generic polyhedron?

Let $p\in M$ be a point in a closed riemannian manifold $M$. Recall that the cut locus of $p$ is the subset of $M$ consisting of all points that are connected to $p$ by at least 2 distance-minimizing ...
15
votes
1answer
562 views

Can the SL_2 character variety of a three-manifold be nonreduced?

Let $M^3$ be a three-manifold and consider the representation variety and the character variety of $M$: $$Y=\operatorname{Hom}(\pi_1(M^3),\operatorname{SL}(2,\mathbb C))$$ ...
8
votes
1answer
465 views

Topological rigidity of compact manifolds in dimension three

The Borel Conjecture asserts that homotopy equivalent aspherical closed manifolds are homeomorphic, which is still open in general. But, for three-dimensional manifolds, this conjecture holds (I ...
7
votes
5answers
409 views

In a contact manifold, is every tranverse 1-foliation given by some Reeb vector field?

Let $M$ be a contact manifold, and let $F$ be an oriented 1-dimensional foliation that is transverse to the contact structure. Is there a contact form $\alpha$ whose associated Reeb vector field ...
10
votes
3answers
470 views

Torsion in cuspidal cohomology

Following Lemma 2.7 from Vogtmann's Rational Homology of Bianchi Groups, I want to define cuspidal cohomology as $$H_{\mathrm{cusp}}(M)=\frac{H_1(M)}{i_*(H_1(\partial M))}$$ where $i:\partial M\to M$ ...
5
votes
1answer
248 views

What is known about a 3-manifold $M$ when its fundamental group is linear?

Suppose we have a 3-manifold $M$ and its respective fundamental group $\pi_1(M)$. An important question about its fundamental group is to ask if it is linear, i.e. they are isomorphic to a subgroup of ...
4
votes
1answer
239 views

Equivalent to Oriented knot complement conjecture

I would like to see why the following two statements in Kirby's list of problem are equivalent: Statement 1: If $K_1$ and $K_2$ are knots in a closed oriented 3-manifold $M$ whose complements are ...
1
vote
1answer
343 views

Smooth structures on closed $3$-manifolds are unique up to diffeomorphism?

Hi! I'm using the theorem stated in the question, but so far, I haven't found a source that does explicitely state and prove it or at least give a proper citation. It must be me though, since the ...
13
votes
2answers
354 views

Heegaard splitting of covering hyperbolic manifold.

I am curious about how the Heegaard genus changes after a finite covering. Is there anyone constructing an closed hyperbolic 3-manifold $N$ such that the Heegaard genus of a finite covering of $N$ ...
5
votes
1answer
457 views

sufficient conditions on Non-Haken manifolds

Is there an algorithm to detect the Non-Haken Manifold? Or, is there a sufficient condition for a manifold to be a non-Haken manifold? (off course, I hope that condition is not the ones in its ...
1
vote
1answer
326 views

Kropholler's Conjecture and 3-manifolds

Suppose that $G$ is a group and that $H$ is a subgroup, both finitely generated, and assume that there is a non-trivial H-almost invariant set $X$ with $HXH=X$. Kropholler's Conjecture asserts that $ ...
-1
votes
1answer
223 views

mapping class group of a surface

I want to know what techniques are known to present a diffeomorphism on a surface with boundary (the diffeomorphism is not necessarily the identity restricted to the boundary) as product of Dehn ...