0
votes
0answers
104 views

Third variation of area of a minimal surface

There is a formula for the third variation of area on page 96 of Nitsche's book, Lectures on Minimal Surfaces, vol. 1 (English version). He says at the bottom of the page it is good for normal ...
3
votes
1answer
338 views

Failure of Palais-Smale Condition C and the Mini-Max Principle

To get a thorough analysis of the critical point structure of a smooth function $f:M\to\mathbb{R}$ on a smooth Hilbert manifold $M$, a compactness assumption gets us far. That assumption is Condition ...
2
votes
1answer
119 views

Is vesica piscis a maximal length curve constrained to two points?

Let $r(t), t\in [0,1]$ be a continuous piecewise $C^1$ curve on the plane where $r(0)=(0,0)$ and $r(1)=(1,0)$. The distance $|r(t)|$ is a non-decreasing function and the distance $|r(t)-(1,0)|$ is a ...
2
votes
1answer
138 views

Extending the variational bicomplex to Hamiltion or Hamiltion-Jacobi formalism

The variational bicomplex seams to provide a modern formulation of the variational problem in terms of modern differential geometry. In particular the bigraded complex of differential forms ...
7
votes
1answer
299 views

Invariance of the l.h.s. of Euler-Lagrange equation

Let $M^n$ be a smooth manifold equipped with a nondegenerate Lagrangian $L:TM\to\mathbb R$, $L=L(x,y)$, $x\in M$, $y\in T_xM$. The stationary points of the corresponding integral functional on curves ...
3
votes
1answer
193 views

Are all null curves of a Lorentzian metric extrema?

Suppose $g$ is a Lorentzian metric on $\mathbb{R}^4$, then consider the variational problem of finding extrema of $$F(\gamma) = \int_a^b \| \dot{\gamma}(s) \|_g ds$$ The so-called "null curves" are ...
4
votes
0answers
217 views

Symmetric matrices and Hilbert's fourth problem

From the analytic viewpoint, the Busemann-Pogorelov solution of Hilbert's fourth problem is summarized in the following result: Theorem. All straight lines are extremals of the variational problem $$ ...
1
vote
1answer
240 views

Reversibility vs geodesic reversibility for Finsler metrics on the two-sphere

Problem. To give a concrete example of a geodesically reversible Finsler metric on the two-sphere that is not just the sum of a reversible Finsler metric and an exact $1$-form. Some background may be ...
7
votes
1answer
243 views

Characterizing maximal powers of closed 2-forms in odd-dimensional manifolds

Given a nowhere-zero, closed $2n$-form $\Omega$ in a manifold of dimension $2n +1$, how do we know if there exists a closed $2$-form $\omega$ such that $\Omega = \omega^n$? Remark. This question ...
10
votes
2answers
507 views

A riemannian manifold with finitely many closed contractible geodesics

By a closed geodesic, I mean a smooth periodic geodesic $\mathbb{R} \rightarrow (M,g)$. I will consider them up to geometric distinction. This means that any two closed geodesics are equivalent if ...
4
votes
1answer
557 views

Geometric derivation of the Einstein’s field equation from the Hilbert action.

It is well-known that the equation for stationary solutions of the Einstein-Hilbert functional is given by the Einstein field equation (for a statement, see previous question). The standard derivation ...
7
votes
1answer
458 views

Coordinate-free derivation of the Einstein's field equation from the Hilbert action.

It is well-known that the equation for stationary solutions of the Einstein-Hilbert functional (without matter and cosmological constant, which is irrelevant here): $$S = \int_M R \mu_g,$$ is given by ...
8
votes
1answer
408 views

Vector fields on path spaces

I've been reading Chen's original works on iterated integrals and in order to consider differential forms on the path space $PM$ of a smooth manifold $M$ he gives $PM$ the following "differentiable ...
10
votes
0answers
188 views

“Small” maps from sphere to sphere

Start with a continuous map $f:S^{n+k} \rightarrow S^n$ (round unit spheres). The graph of $f$ lives in $S^{n+k}\times S^n$ and suppose it has a surface area (as a subspace of co-dimension $n$). Now ...
4
votes
1answer
230 views

Work on an Einstein-Hilbert type action but with the *absolute value* of scalar curvature?

This is only my second question on mathoverflow, so my apologies if this would be more appropriate at a physics site. My question concerns a modification to the Einstein-Hilbert action. The standard ...
11
votes
2answers
585 views

For what metrics are circles solutions of the isoperimetric problem?

A classical result is that solutions of the isoperimetric problem on the plane, the sphere, and the hyperbolic plane are circles. Are there any other Riemannian metrics on these spaces that share this ...
5
votes
2answers
345 views

Willmore minimizers for genus $\geq 2$

For an immersed closed surface $f: \Sigma \rightarrow \mathbb R^3$ the Willmore functional is defined as $$ \cal W(f) = \int _{\Sigma} \frac{1}{4} |\vec H|^2 d \mu_g, $$ where $\vec H$ is the mean ...
3
votes
0answers
167 views

Methods for generating metrics and minimizing variational dynamics of particles (masses or charges) on n-dimensional smooth manifolds

I am attempting to investigate transformations between two distinct sets of vertices on n-dimensional manifolds with a minimal change in the fundamental shape of the vertices. I will give some ...
4
votes
1answer
583 views

Results about existence/uniqueness of solution to Euler-Lagrange equations?

While studying calculus of variations, there is one question that I feel is missing in the texts I'm reading: What can we say about the existence and/or uniqueness of solutions to Euler-Lagrange ...
6
votes
3answers
305 views

Characterization of certain curves of $\mathbb{R}^2$

Let $\Gamma \subset \mathbb{R}^2$ be a closed simple $C^1$ curve. For every $x \in \mathbb{R}^2\setminus\Gamma$ there exists some $p(x) \in \Gamma$ such that $$ (H) \quad \text{ ...
3
votes
1answer
638 views

Least-squares regression and differential geometry

For $k, n \in \mathbb{N}$, let $\mathcal{C}_n \mathbb{R}^k$ denote the configuration space of $n$ distinct points in $\mathbb{R}^k$. (1) Is there a description of the tangent space $T_C ...
7
votes
1answer
662 views

Calculating the geodesic equation for a particular set of phase-space coordinates

Let $g$ be a Riemannian metric on the $d$-dimensional flat space $\mathbb R^d$, and consider the usual Lagrangian $$L(x, \dot x) = \tfrac 1 2 g_{ij}(x) \dot x^i \dot x^j.$$ Let $\hat g := \sqrt g$ ...
1
vote
2answers
677 views

Names of certain surfaces

Are there any generally used names for the following algebraic and nonalgebraic surfaces? Any references to literature where the surfaces are studied are also appreciated. Surface I. Implicit ...
1
vote
1answer
590 views

“Synthetic” proof of geodesic flow equation?

First, let me explain what I mean by "synthetic" in the title, which is a proof that reasons purely axiomatically and does not explicitly invoke local coordinate charts (either via concrete expansions ...