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54
votes
4answers
2k views

Parallelizability of the Milnor's exotic spheres in dimension 7

Are the Milnor's seven dimensional exotic spheres parallelizable?
46
votes
3answers
4k 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 ...
39
votes
3answers
2k 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 ...
37
votes
4answers
2k 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 ...
29
votes
7answers
4k 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 ...
28
votes
2answers
1k 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
3answers
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 ...
25
votes
2answers
911 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 ...
21
votes
4answers
2k 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 ...
21
votes
3answers
1k 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 ...
20
votes
3answers
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
7answers
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 ...
18
votes
2answers
901 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
8answers
6k 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 ...
16
votes
9answers
4k 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 ...
16
votes
5answers
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 ...
16
votes
1answer
448 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 ...
15
votes
3answers
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 ...
15
votes
1answer
407 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 ...
15
votes
0answers
473 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 ...
14
votes
3answers
862 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
4answers
1k 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
3answers
2k 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 ...
14
votes
3answers
581 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 ...
14
votes
2answers
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 ...
13
votes
4answers
1k 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 ...
13
votes
3answers
906 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 ...
13
votes
2answers
865 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 ...
12
votes
6answers
838 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 ...
12
votes
1answer
602 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 ...
12
votes
1answer
993 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 ...
12
votes
1answer
686 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 ...
11
votes
4answers
2k 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 ...
11
votes
4answers
579 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
2answers
593 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 ...
11
votes
0answers
615 views

conformal blocks for beginners

I have given now a couple of talks that involve conformal blocks bundles on the moduli stack $\overline{\mathcal{M}}_{g,n}$, in front of a public of algebraic geometers but not specialists of the ...
11
votes
0answers
310 views

Atiyah-Bott from Beauville-Laszlo

This is a question about the cohomology groups of the stack of vector bundles (with fixed discrete invariants) on an algebraic curve. Explicit formulas for these cohomology groups are known, and they ...
10
votes
3answers
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 ...
10
votes
3answers
2k 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 ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

Is it true that if the pushforward of a coherent sheaf is locally free, then the original sheaf is locally free?

I think the title says it all. If I have a finite map $p:X\to Y$ between schemes, and $F$ is a coherent sheaf on $X$ such that $p_*F$ is locally free, can I conclude that $F$ is locally free? ...
10
votes
3answers
778 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 ...
10
votes
5answers
841 views

From Topological to Smooth and Holomorphic Vector Bundles

In the last weeks I have been think of the transition from topological vector bundles to smooth and holomorphic vector bundles. This has resulted in a few questions (with a common thread) as follows: ...
10
votes
5answers
828 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 $A(t)$ ...
10
votes
3answers
993 views

Are schemes that “have enough locally frees” necessarily separated

Let me motivate my question a bit. Thm. Let $X$ be a locally noetherian finite-dimensional regular scheme. If $X$ has enough locally frees, then the natural homomorphism $K^0(X)\longrightarrow ...
10
votes
3answers
791 views

Calculating the decomposition of a vector bundle over rational curve

Consider the rational curve (conic) given by image of the map $$ u([z,w])=[z^2,-z^2,w^2,-w^2,zw] \in \mathbb{P}^4 $$ which lies in quintic 3-fold $X: x_1^5+\cdots+x_5^5- x_1\cdots x_5=0$. By ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

How do you describe vector bundles on elliptic curves?

Throughout "curve" means smooth projective curve over an algebraically closed field. Motivation and Background I read somewhere that Atiyah has classified vector bundles on elliptic curves. My ...
10
votes
2answers
949 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 ...
10
votes
1answer
567 views

Semiring of algebraic vector bundles on projective space

Let $K$ be a field and $n \geq 1$. Then the set of isomorphism classes of vector bundles over $\mathbb{P}^n_K$ is a semiring (i.e. almost a ring, but no additive inverses are possible). By introducing ...
10
votes
0answers
430 views

Deformations of some simple quotient stacks.

I am interested in stacks of vector bundles on varieties and how deformations of the variety (including non-commutative ones) reflect themselves in deformations of the stack of vector bundles. I will ...
10
votes
0answers
374 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 ...