**60**

votes

**4**answers

3k views

### Parallelizability of the Milnor's exotic spheres in dimension 7

Are the Milnor's seven dimensional exotic spheres parallelizable?

**60**

votes

**3**answers

6k views

### Intuitive explanation for the Atiyah-Singer index theorem

My question is related to the question Explanation for the Chern Character to this question about Todd classes, and to this question about the Atiyah-Singer index theorem.
I'm trying to learn the ...

**47**

votes

**3**answers

3k views

### Why do Todd classes appear in Grothendieck-Riemann-Roch formula?

Suppose for some reason one would be expecting a formula of the kind
$$\mathop{\text{ch}}(f_!\mathcal F)\ =\ f_*(\mathop{\text{ch}}(\mathcal F)\cdot t_f)$$
valid in $H^*(Y)$ where
$f:X\to Y$ is a ...

**41**

votes

**6**answers

3k views

### Total spaces of $TS^2$ and $S^2 \times R^2$ not homeomorphic

Hello,
I'm looking for an invariant to distinguish the homeomorphism types of homotopy equivalent spaces. Specifically, how does one show that the total spaces of the tangent bundle to $S^2$ and the ...

**40**

votes

**0**answers

636 views

### Vector bundle $L$ admits connection if and only if degree of every direct summand of $L$ divisible by $\text{char}\,k$, intuition

Consider the following theorem of Atiyah.
Let $X$ be a connected smooth projective curve over an algebraically closed field $k$. Then a vector bundle $L$ on $X$ admits a connection if and only if ...

**32**

votes

**3**answers

2k views

### When is a submanifold of $\mathbf R^n$ given by global equations?

Let $M \subset \mathbf R^n$ be a (smooth) submanifold of dimension $d$. Under which conditions does there exist global equations defining $M$? By global equations I mean : does there exist a smooth ...

**31**

votes

**4**answers

3k views

### Using linear algebra to classify vector bundles over P^1

There is a theorem of Grothendieck stating that a vector bundle of rank $r$ over the projective line $\mathbb{P}^1$ can be decomposed into $r$ line bundles uniquely up to isomorphism. If we let ...

**30**

votes

**7**answers

6k views

### Why is it useful to study vector bundles?

I have this question coming from an earlier Qiaochu's post. Some answers there, especially David Lehavi's one, were drawing the analogy bundles and varieties versus modules and rings. So I am just ...

**30**

votes

**2**answers

2k views

### Symmetric powers and duals of vector bundles in char p

Suppose that $X$ is a smooth projective variety (eg $P^n$) and $E$ is a vector bundle (eg the tangent bundle). If the characteristic is zero, then taking symmetric powers "commutes" with taking duals:
...

**28**

votes

**8**answers

9k views

### What are some open problems in algebraic geometry?

What are the open big problems in algebraic geometry and vector bundles?
More specifically, I would like to know what are interesting problems related to moduli spaces of vector bundles over ...

**27**

votes

**2**answers

1k views

### vector bundle trivial over every compact subset, then it is globally trivial

Let $X$ be a non-compact metric space (though if the answer to the question is positive, then it probably also holds for more general spaces like, e.g., paracompact Hausdorff) and $E \to X$ a vector ...

**27**

votes

**4**answers

2k views

### When can we cancel vector bundles from tensor products?

Let $E,F,G$ be algebraic vector bundles over $\mathbb P_{\mathbb C}^n$. My general question is:
Assume $E\otimes G \cong F\otimes G$, under what conditions can one conclude that $E\cong F$?
Some ...

**22**

votes

**7**answers

2k views

### Why is it useful to classify the vector bundles of a space?

It seems to me that vector bundles are useful because they allow us to bring to bear all of the linear algebra we know to aid in the study of topological spaces. Now, I've read somewhere that it is ...

**22**

votes

**3**answers

1k views

### The third axiom in the definition of (infinite-dimensional) vector bundles: why?

Serge Lang's Differential and Riemannian Manifolds is a no doubt the best available reference for the theory of not-necessarily-finite-dimensional differential manifolds, but unfortunately it suffers ...

**19**

votes

**0**answers

212 views

### “High-concept” explanation for proof of a theorem of Ochanine?

See Akhil Mathew's notes on Ochanine's theorem for elliptic genera here and here.
Let $\phi: \Omega_{SO} \to \Lambda$ be a genus. We might ask when $\phi$ satisfies the following multiplicative ...

**19**

votes

**0**answers

561 views

### Characteristic Classes for $E_8$ Bundles

Given a principal $E_8$ bundle $P\rightarrow X$ one can take the
adjoint representation $\rho :E_8\rightarrow SU(\mathbb C^{248})$
and form the associated vector bundle $V=P\times_{\rho}\mathbb
...

**18**

votes

**2**answers

1k views

### If the total Chern class of a vector bundle factors, does it have a sub-bundle?

Motivation: $T_{\mathbb P^2}$ isn't an extension of line bundles
Here's a trick to show that the tangent bundle $T$ of $\mathbb P^2$ is not an extension of line bundles. If it were, we would have a ...

**17**

votes

**9**answers

5k views

### Why is cotangent more canonical than tangent?

You don't need a metric to define the differential of a function,
and the cotangent bundle carries a canonical one-form.
But you do need a metric to define the gradient, and the
tangent bundle does ...

**17**

votes

**5**answers

1k views

### A ring such that all projectives are stably free but not all projectives are free?

This question is motivated by this recent question. Suppose $R$ is commutative, Noetherian ring and $M$ a finitely generated $R$-module. Let $FD(M)$ and $PD(M)$ be the shortest length of free and ...

**17**

votes

**3**answers

1k views

### Is the category of vector bundles over a topological space abelian?

Consider the trivial bundle $V=\mathbb{R}\times\mathbb{R}$ and the map $f:V\rightarrow V$ given by $(t,x)\mapsto(t,tx)$. This has fibrewise kernels and cokernels, but the ranks jump at 0, so the ...

**17**

votes

**3**answers

1k views

### How do you relate the number of independent vector fields on spheres and Bott Periodicity for real K-Theory?

The theory of Clifford algebras gives us an explicit lower bound for the number of linearly independent vector fields on the $n$-sphere, and Adams proved that this is actually always the best ...

**17**

votes

**1**answer

571 views

### Existence of non-split vector bundles on smooth projective varieties

Question. Is it known/easy to see that every smooth projective variety $X$ (over an algebraically closed field), except for the point and $\mathbb{P}^1$, has a vector bundle which is not a direct ...

**17**

votes

**1**answer

506 views

### Does the holonomy map define a homomorphism $\pi_k(X)\to\pi_{k-1}(Hol(\nabla))$?

Consider a vector bundle $V\to E\to X$ with fiber $V$, with structure group $G$, and $X$ path-connected. Consider a connection $\nabla$ on $E$. Then for any loop $L$ in $X$, based at $p$, we have a ...

**16**

votes

**4**answers

3k views

### Extending vector bundles on a given open subscheme

Many people seem to know the following. Personally, I don't quite understand it though and maybe I'm wrong. It's the fact that "a vector bundle on an open subscheme extends in only one way to a vector ...

**16**

votes

**2**answers

2k views

### First Chern class of a flat line bundle

A referee asked me to include a reference or proof for the following classical fact. It's not hard to prove, but I'd prefer to just give a reference -- does anyone know one?
Let $X$ be a nice space ...

**15**

votes

**4**answers

2k views

### Representations of surface groups via holomorphic connections

EDIT: Tony Pantev has pointed out that the answer to this question will appear in forthcoming work of Bogomolov-Soloviev-Yotov. I look forward to reading it!
Background
Let $E \to X$ be a ...

**15**

votes

**3**answers

3k views

### Evidences on Hartshorne's conjecture? References?

Hartshorne's famous conjecture on vector bundles say that any rank $2$ vector bundle over a projective space $\mathbb{P}^n$ with $n\geq 7$ splits into the direct sum of two line bundles.
So my ...

**15**

votes

**1**answer

583 views

### Soft and hard part of geometry [duplicate]

While listening to some lecture of Alain Connes about noncommutative geometry, he spoke about various generalizations of the classical concepts from geometry and divided it into "soft" and "hard" ...

**15**

votes

**1**answer

194 views

### Smooth manifolds as idempotent splitting completion

The nlab has a particularly interesting thing to say about the category of smooth manifolds: it is the idempotent-splitting completion of the category of open sets of Euclidean spaces and smooth maps.
...

**14**

votes

**6**answers

1k views

### Does every vector bundle allow a finite trivialization cover?

Suppose there is a vector bundle (smooth, with constant rank finite-dimensional fibres) over a (smooth, second-countable, Hausdorff, not necessarily connected) manifold $B$ of dimension $n$.
(a) Is ...

**14**

votes

**3**answers

1k views

### what is a spinor structure?

There are of course lots of definitions and references for this, but in the same way that, on a manifold $M$,
a Riemannian metric is a section of positive definite symmetric bilinear forms on $TM$
...

**14**

votes

**4**answers

2k views

### What is a section?

This question comes out of the answers to Ho Chung Siu's question about vector bundles. Based on my reading, it seems that the definition of the term "section" went through several phases of ...

**14**

votes

**2**answers

811 views

### Vector bundles on vector bundles

Are all vector bundles on a given vector bundle the pull back of a vector bundle on the base?
In more detail: let $X$ be a space and $p:E\rightarrow X$ a vector bundle over $X$. Let $\iota: X ...

**14**

votes

**2**answers

1k views

### Non trivial vector bundle over non-paracompact contractible space

The proof that the set of classes of vector bundles is homotopy invariant relies on the paracompactness and the Hausdorff property of the base space. Are there any known examples of:
Non trivial ...

**14**

votes

**1**answer

365 views

### Anything between vector bundles and sphere bundles?

There are two extremities: on the "easy end" one has vector bundles which are classified by maps to the (more or less) well understood spaces like Grassmanians; on the "hard end" there are spherical ...

**14**

votes

**3**answers

618 views

### Is analytic Quillen-Suslin simple?

This question is motivated by a sentence on the Wikipedia entry for Quillen-Suslin theorem. This theorem states that every algebraic vector bundle on affine space is trivial. The analogous result is ...

**13**

votes

**5**answers

3k views

### What is a square root of a line bundle?

If ${L}$ is a line bundle over a complex manifold, what does the square root line bundle $L^{\frac{1}{2}}$ mean?
After some google, I got to know that there are certain conditions for the existence of ...

**13**

votes

**3**answers

2k views

### Vector bundles on $\mathbb{P}^1\times\mathbb{P}^1$

I have a question about vector bundles on the algebraic surface $\mathbb{P}^1\times\mathbb{P}^1$. My motivation is the splitting theorem of Grothendieck, which says that every algebraic vector bundle ...

**13**

votes

**4**answers

3k views

### Vector bundles vs principal $G$-bundles

It is well known that a (real) vector bundle $\pi : E\to B$ over a topological space (or manifold) $B$ is a fibre bundle whose fibres
$$F=\pi^{-1}(x), \ \ \ x\in B $$
over any $x\in B$, are ...

**13**

votes

**1**answer

823 views

### Splitting principle for holomorphic vector bundles

Let $E \to X$ be a vector bundle over a decent space $X$. Then there is a space $Z$ together with a map $p: Z \to X$ which induces a split injection on cohomology and such that $p^* E$ splits as a ...

**13**

votes

**1**answer

1k views

### A question on classification of almost complex structures on $4$-manifolds

I have a (basic?) question in topology.
Question 1. Is it possible to characterise compact $4$-manifolds $M^4$, such that almost complex structures on $M^4$ are uniquely defined up to homotopy by ...

**13**

votes

**1**answer

892 views

### Is there an alternative characterisation of vector bundles with vanishing characteristic classes?

This question came up yesterday during our index theory seminar.
Let $M$ be a 1-connected smooth manifold and let $E \to M$ be a finite-rank complex vector bundle over $M$. If all the Chern classes ...

**13**

votes

**1**answer

235 views

### Do vanishing characteristic classes of the tangent bundle imply a manifold is stably frameable?

Suppose we know that all stable characteristic classes of the tangent bundle of a manifold $M$ vanish, i.e. the map $f:M\rightarrow BO$ stably classifying the tangent bundle is trivial on cohomology, ...

**12**

votes

**2**answers

728 views

### The quotient stack $[\mathbb{A}^n / \mathrm{GL}_n]$

Consider the affine space $\mathbb{A}^n$ (over some base scheme) with the usual $\mathrm{GL}_n$-action. What does the quotient stack $[\mathbb{A}^n / \mathrm{GL}_n]$ classify? If $n=1$, then we get ...

**12**

votes

**2**answers

1k views

### K-Theory and the Stack of Vector Bundles

I have some understanding that vector bundles provide a basic, familiar example of what I should call a stack. Namely, consider the functor $Vect$ that assigns to a space $X$ the set of isomorphism ...

**12**

votes

**0**answers

408 views

### Exotic smoothness and Parallelizability

Regarding the parallelizability of the Milnor's seven dimensional exotic spheres:
Parallelizability of the Milnor's exotic spheres in dimension 7
The following question naturally arises:
Suppose ...

**11**

votes

**4**answers

624 views

### Algebraic analogue of the Moebius bundle over the circle

Let $R$ be the ring $R[X,Y]/(X^2+Y^2−1)$. The space of $\mathbb{R}$-rational points of the affine scheme associated to $R$ is the topological circle $S^1$.
An algebraic vector bundle over $R$ is an ...

**11**

votes

**3**answers

862 views

### Flat SU(2) bundles over hyperbolic 3-manifolds

Can someone give me a non-trivial example of a flat SU(2)-connection over a compact orientable hyperbolic 3-manifold?
The literature on such bundles over 3-manifolds is huge and my naive searches ...

**11**

votes

**3**answers

3k views

### Why is the integral of the second chern class an integer?

I'm currently reading the paper "Holonomy, the Quantum Adiabatic Theorem, and Berry's Phase" by Barry Simon.
Imagine a vector bundle with a connection $\nabla$. For simplicity, we assume that this is ...

**11**

votes

**5**answers

1k views

### Can always a family of symmetric real matrices depending smoothly on a real parameter be diagonalized by smooth similarity transformations?

This question is related to another question, but it is definitely not the same.
Is it always possible to diagonalize (at least locally around each point) a family of symmetric real matrices $A(t)$ ...