# Questions tagged [billiards]

Billiards are a class of dynamical systems in which a point particle moves uniformly in a domain $D\subset \mathbb{R}^d$ except for mirror-like reflections from the boundary. Varying $D$ leads to examples satisfying many ergodic properties. Billiards enhance visual explanations of dynamical concepts to students and the general public. There are many applications in physics and image processing. The free motion and/or reflection rule may be generalized.

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### Pocket billiards with balls in general position

There were at least two earlier MO questions about ideal pocket billiards. (Ideal: frictionless, perfectly elastic collisions.) Perfectly centered break of a perfectly aligned pool ball rack. Does ...
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### Illuminating a just-barely irrational polygon

As has been discussed earlier on MO,1,2 recently an impressive advance was proved concerning internally illuminating a mirrored polygon. Here is the result: Corollary 3. Let $P$ be a rational polygon....
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### Maximal length of trajectories in billiard

Consider discrete rectangular billard on lattice with integer dimensions a*b and n balls with radius $\frac{\sqrt 2}{2}$ and ...
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### Finding particular closed paths in geometric plane regions

Let $X_m$ denote a set of $m\geq 3$ lines in $\mathbb{R}^2$ that are not all parallel. Consider the problem of determining a closed path of $kn$ points in $X_m$ $k, n \in \mathbb{Z}^+$, such that the ...
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### Is there a reversible fully polynomial-time approximation scheme for polygonal billiards?

Let $P \subset \mathbb{R}^2$ be a polygon with rational coordinates, and consider discrete billiards inside $P$, where a ball (of zero radius) moves by steps of fixed length on each step, in a ...
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### Why are we interested in operators that share a basis of eigenfunctions?

I hope this is an appropriate question for this forum. If not, I apologize. Before stating my question (which may be found at the end of this post), I will attempt to provide sufficient context. I ...
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### Why is the billiard problem for obtuse triangles so hard?

This is an incredibly naive question so this may be closed. Nevertheless, I have been reading about the problem asking if every obtuse triangle admits a periodic billiard path, which has been open ...
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### Trapping lightrays under nonstandard reflections and/or paths

Almost every version of trapping lightrays with mirrors is either resolved---usually negatively---or open: "It is unknown whether one can construct a polygonal trap for a parallel beam of light": ...
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### Types of triangles admitting periodic billiard orbits

It is an open problem in dynamical systems if every triangle has a periodic billiard orbit. So far it has been proven that equilateral triangles, isosceles triangles, right triangles, and obtuse ...
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### 6-periodic billiards trajectory in acute triangle

We can construct a 3-periodic billiards trajectory in an acute triangle in a classical geometric way, say taking the altitudes. Is there a similar way to construct a 6-periodic billiards?
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