Knot theory is dealing with embedding of curves in manifolds of dimension 3. A knot is a single circle embedded in the affine space of dimension 3 as a smooth curve not crossing itself. Many knot invariants are known and can be used to distinguish knots.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

8
votes
0answers
103 views

What fraction of knots are ribbon knots?

Pardon the naive question. Perhaps there are several different variants of my question, but essentially I am seeking to know whether ribbon knots are vanishingly rare among all knots, or a positive ...
2
votes
0answers
55 views

Mutant pairs distinguished by [2,1]-colored HOMFLY polynomials

Morton and Cromwell showed that the famous mutant pair, Kinoshita-Terasaka and Conway knots, can be distinguished by HOMFLY polynomials colored by [2,1] Young diagram. Are there any other mutant pairs ...
1
vote
1answer
157 views

Does knot Floer homology detect knot genus in rational homology spheres?

My question is the following: Does knot Floer homology detect the genus of null-homologous knot in rational homology spheres? If the answer is yes, I would like to have a reference for the ...
6
votes
0answers
108 views

Stable, tame A-infinity isomorphism?

Linear duality provides a correspondence between differentials on free tensor algebras and A-infinity algebras. Under this correspondence, what is the A-infinity counterpart of "stable, tame ...
9
votes
3answers
313 views

Unknotting number of knot diagrams

Define the "diagram unknotting number" of a knot diagram $D$ as the minimal number of crossings that need to be changed in $D$ in order to get a diagram of the trivial knot (the usual unknotting ...
12
votes
1answer
206 views

Can infinitely many alternating knots have the same Alexander polynomial?

There exist many constructions of infinite families of knots with the same Alexander polynomial. However, alternating knots seem very special. While there are also many result on restricting the form ...
8
votes
1answer
316 views

Is more alternating always better?

While thinking about this interesting question asked by Dylan Thurston, it occured to me that in every case that I know, the closer a knot diagram is to being alternating, the better its properties. ...
6
votes
2answers
411 views

Reference for a fact (?) on homeomorphic knot complements

Does somebody have a reference (or an argument why it should be true) for the following statement? “Let $K$ and $K'$ be knots in $S^3$. If there is an orientation-preserving homeomorphism $h : S^3 ...
1
vote
0answers
61 views

Ozsvath-Szabo orientation convention for Seifert fibred spaces

I am confused by the orientation convention that Ozsvath and Szabo use in On Heegaard Floer homology and Seifert Fibered Surgeries and would appreciate if someone clarifies this for me. On page 15 ...
2
votes
2answers
224 views

Gauss Codes that produce classical knots as opposed to virtual knots

I have been doing some research in Gauss codes and have been reading Kauffman's paper Virtual Knot Theory. In section 3.3, Theorem 2, he states that If $K$ is a virtual knot whose underlying Gauss ...
32
votes
1answer
845 views

Can knot diagrams be monotonically simplified using under moves?

It is well known that knot diagrams cannot be monotonically simplified using Reidemeister moves. For instance, the Goeritz unknot cannot be directly simplified. On the other hand, there is a stronger ...
1
vote
1answer
36 views

Question about general torus knot lengths [closed]

Can anyone send me a reference about calculating the length of a thin string wound on a p,q torus with major radius R and minor radius r in terms of p, q, R and r? This may appear trivial but I have ...
7
votes
1answer
216 views

Does the limit in the Volume conjecture converge?

The Volume conjecture says that if $J_n(q)$ are the colored Jones polynomials of a knot $K \subset S^3$, then $$\lim_{N \to \infty} \frac{ 2 \pi}N \left\vert J_N(e^{2\pi i / N})\right\vert = vol(K)$$ ...
6
votes
6answers
294 views

Reference on representations of knot groups

Recently, I was studying the knot group and I want to learn some more material about it (e.g. its representations). "Knots" by Burde and Zieschang discusses some material but it is not entirely ...
6
votes
1answer
300 views

Proving that the Jones polynomial is q-holonomic

The Jones polynomial is known to have many different interpretations or definitions, by now. There are connections with QFT, quantum groups, Hilbert schemes, Cherednik algebras, etc. My question is ...
3
votes
1answer
74 views

Quandle colorings under Reidemeister moves

Let $D$ be a knot diagram and $Q$ a quandle. We use $c$ to denote a fixed coloring of $D$ with $Q$. If $D'$ is another knot diagram of the same knot, and $R_1$ is a sequence of Reidemeister moves ...
19
votes
0answers
242 views

Topological description of inverting a knot

The first figure shows an offset overhand knot. To tie it, you simply bring the two cords together and make an overhand knot in them. It's more secure than it looks, and several climbers have been ...
0
votes
0answers
141 views

Understanding a program for computing Khovanov homology

I would like to understand how a computer program for computing Khovanov homology works. The particular program I have in mind is by John Baldwin: https://web.math.princeton.edu/~baldwinj/Kh.cpp The ...
16
votes
2answers
316 views

Classification of tangles?

Has anybody done any work on making a classification of low-complexity tangles, analogous to the work for knots and links? I expect most of the small ones to be rational, and those that aren't ...
2
votes
1answer
94 views

Computable link invariants

I am interested in the following situation: given a braid $B$, it induces a link $L$ in a pretty straightforward way ("glue" the endpoints, like here). For a braid $B$, we know how to represent it in ...
12
votes
0answers
169 views

What do tangles teach us about braids?

A braid is a smooth level-preserving embedding $f\colon\, \{1,2,\ldots,n\}\times[0,1]\hookrightarrow \mathbb{R}^2 \times [0,1]$ such that $f(k,0)=(k,0)$ and $f(k,1) \in \{1,2,\ldots,n\} \times ...
10
votes
2answers
493 views

Is every knot unavoidable in the embeddings of some graph?

Is it the case that, for any given knot $K$, there exists some graph $G$ whose every embedding into $\mathbb{R}^3$ (or into $\mathbb{S}^3$) contains a cycle that realizes $K$? I know the ...
4
votes
1answer
208 views

Knot invariants in 3-manifolds that are not $\mathbb{R}^3$ or $S^3$ or $B^3$?

This is just a reference request; I have no sharp mathematical question. Inspired by the $(3+)$-year old MO question, In knot theory: Benefits of working in $S^3$ instead of $\mathbb{R}^3$?, I would ...
23
votes
1answer
223 views

The Jones polynomial at specific values of $t$.

I've been calculating some Jones polynomials lately and I was just curious if there was a physical meaning to evaluating the Jones polynomial at a particular value of $t$. For example, if I take the ...
4
votes
2answers
343 views

How to tell if two or more knots are linked

Given a number of knots, I would like to know if they are linked. I know that the linking number can tell if two knots are linked. There is any method that completely solves this problem?
3
votes
1answer
115 views

Khovanov $sl_2$ homology of a connected sum of some torus knots

Let $T_{p,q}$ be the (p,q) torus knot. Could anybody possibly compute either unreduced or reduced Khovanov $\mathfrak{sl}(2)$ homology of the connected sum $T_{2,3} \sharp T_{3,4}$ of the (2,3) and ...
-2
votes
1answer
281 views

Do homeomorphic complements give homotopic knots?

Maybe this question is too trivial for a research site but there are so many notions of equivalence of knots that I am lost in literature. The question that interests me is the following. A knot is a ...
2
votes
3answers
258 views

Heegaard Floer Homology of double branched cover

The question is the following: Let $K\subset S^{3}$ be a knot, consider the double branched cover $Y$ of $S^{3}$ over $K$. We know $Y$ has a unique spin structure $\mathfrak{s}$, now the question is: ...
4
votes
2answers
340 views

Jones polynomial of the concatenation of two braids

Let $\sigma_1$ and $\sigma_2$ be two braids with $n$-strings. Are there any formulas relating $J_{\widehat{\sigma_1\sigma_2}}(q)$, $J_{\hat{\sigma_1}}(q)$, and $J_{\hat{\sigma_2}}(q)$? Here, ...
3
votes
1answer
132 views

Parity of knot signatures

I recently came upon a recursive formula for the (ordinary) signatures of torus knots. The formula, which I found in Murasugi's book "Knot Theory and Applications" (Springer, 2007), originally ...
0
votes
0answers
97 views

Alexander Invariant of Torus knot

I am very interested in knot theory, especially in knot groups and knot polynomials. As is well known, it is easy to calculate the Alexander polynomial from the fundamental group $\pi_{1}(K)$ of a ...
5
votes
0answers
122 views

Software for BMW algebra calculations?

Does software exist for computations in the BMW algebra? For example, I'd like to be able to express elements in a basis of "totally descending tangles" as in a paper of Morton–Wassermann. At ...
2
votes
0answers
40 views

Tait conjectures for alternating w-links

The Tait Conjectures are useful in knot tabulation. For alternating knots and links, two of them state: Any reduced diagram of an alternating link has the fewest possible crossings. Any two reduced ...
5
votes
0answers
118 views

Crossing bound implies Reidemeister move bound?

In 1998 Galatolo established an upper bound on the number of Reidemeister moves needed to convert a diagram $D$ of the unknot into a trivial loop diagram. The upper bound is a function of $n$, the ...
5
votes
1answer
107 views

Closed formula or program for computing Tristram-Levine signatures of torus knots?

I need to compute a series of Tristram-Levine signatures for a family of torus knots. I was wondering if this has already been done or whether there is a good way to streamline the computation. I am ...
9
votes
2answers
504 views

The Alexander polynomial of a slice knot, Reidemeister tosion, Whitehead group

My question is about the Alexander polynomial of a slice knot. For a slice knot $K$, Fox-Millnor and Terasaka proved that $$ \Delta_{K}(t) \doteq f(t) f(t^{-1})$$ for some polynomial $f(t) \in ...
7
votes
1answer
125 views

Relation between the Alexander module of a link and intermediate free abelian covers

I'm working through McMullen's paper "The Alexander polynomial of a 3-manifold and the Thurston norm on cohomology" and have a question concerning the following setup: Given a link complement $(X, ...
1
vote
0answers
121 views

The relations between some 3-components links and trefoil knots [closed]

It is intuitive to see that the 3-components links (under Alexander–Briggs notations) $6^3_1, 6^3_2, 6^3_3$ are closely related to each other; in a sense by doing a cut-gluing or sew-gluing surgery, ...
3
votes
2answers
126 views

Why is a braided left autonomous category also right autonomous?

In Selinger, P. A survey of graphical languages for monoidal categories (New Structures for Physics, Springer, 2011, 813, 289-233), it is stated that: Lemma 4.17 ([23, Prop. 7.2]). A braided ...
2
votes
1answer
114 views

Practical application of lattice knots

I am looking for examples of practical applications of lattice knots. Any help?
9
votes
0answers
177 views

The Markov trace via Bott-Samelson fibers?

Let $H_n$ be the Hecke algebra of GL(n), i.e., the algebra over $\mathbb{Q}(q)$ with generators $T_1, \ldots, T_{n-1}$ which satisfy the braid relations and also $T^2 = (q-1) T + q$. Recall the ...
5
votes
1answer
155 views

Do we get a instanton $S^{3}$ if we do $1/n$ surgery on a knot in $S^{3}$?

Consider the following question: If $K\subset S^{3}$ is a nontrivial knot. Let $Y$ be the manifold obtained by doing $1/n$-surgery ($n\geq1$). Is it possible that the instanton Floer homology of $Y$ ...
1
vote
1answer
159 views

Clarification of Gabai's exposition of Murasugi Sums in 'the Murasugi sum is a natural geometric operation'

Gabai states that the Murasugi sum of two hopf bands yields a spanning surface of either the figure eight knot, the trefoil knot or a link of three components. Figure one shows two oppositely twisted ...
8
votes
0answers
149 views

Does the shortest path between two braids pass through string links?

One of the fundamental facts underlying the application of braid theory to knot theory is that braids inject into string links. This means that braids $B_1$ and $B_2$, considered inside a cube $I^3$, ...
0
votes
0answers
90 views

Jones polynomial of 2-knots

Question: is it possible to define the Jones polynomial for knotted surfaces (or $S^2$ for simplicity) in $R^4$? Jones polynomial has several definitions (see How many definitions are there of the ...
8
votes
1answer
472 views

Is this knot invariant already treated somewhere in the literature?

Fix a knot type $K \subset S^3$, and consider the set $$Y_K = \{ \mbox{Diagrams of }K \} / \mbox{planar isotopy}.$$ We can turn $Y_K$ into a metric space by considering the distance induced by ...
7
votes
2answers
562 views

Are Fourier series of length 2 'asymmetric enough' to generate all crossing patterns? - A reformulation of the Fourier-(1,1,2) knot question

Given $N$ pairs of distinct real numbers $t_i, t'_i \in [0,1]$, $i = 1,\ldots,N$, we ask if there is a function $f(x) = \cos(2\pi mx+\alpha) + \gamma\cdot \cos(2\pi nx+\beta)$, with $m, n \in ...
3
votes
2answers
179 views

Handlebody decomposition of a 3-manifold adapted to a link

Given a compact connected 3-manifold $M$ with non-empty boundary, and a link $L \subset M$, is there a handlebody decomposition of $M = H^0 \cup (\cup_i H^1_i) \cup \{\text{2-handles}\}$ such that: ...
5
votes
0answers
89 views

Ribbon knot presentations

Suppose $K$ is a $n$-knot, $n\geq 2$, which bounds two different ribbon disks $D_1, D_2$. These ribbon disks induce unique ribbon $(n+1)$-knots $K_1, K_2$ respectively. Is it known whether $K_1$ and ...
12
votes
4answers
823 views

What properties of knots lead Lord Kelvin to hypothesize that atoms were knots in the ether?

I've often heard that Lord Kelvin was one of the first people to study knot theory, as he hypothesized that atoms were knots in the ether. I assume that he had some compelling evidence for this fact. ...