# Questions tagged [dg.differential-geometry]

Complex, contact, Riemannian, pseudo-Riemannian and Finsler geometry, relativity, gauge theory, global analysis.

560 questions

**39**

votes

**5**answers

4k views

### Finding a 1-form adapted to a smooth flow

Let $M$ be a smooth compact manifold, and let $X$ be a smooth vector field of $M$ that is nowhere vanishing, thus one can think of the pair $(M,X)$ as a smooth flow with no fixed points. Let us say ...

**10**

votes

**3**answers

1k views

### Limit cycles as closed geodesics(in negatively or positively curved space)

EDIT: Here is a related post which concern quadratic vector fields rather than Van der pol equation. In this linked post we see that the convexity of limit cycle play a crucial role. On ...

**53**

votes

**4**answers

7k views

### $C^1$ isometric embedding of flat torus into $\mathbb{R}^3$

I read (in a paper by Emil Saucan) that the flat torus may be isometrically embedded
in $\mathbb{R}^3$ with a $C^1$ map by the Kuiper extension of the Nash Embedding Theorem,
a claim repeated in this ...

**152**

votes

**21**answers

23k views

### What is torsion in differential geometry intuitively?

Hi,
given a connection on the tangent space of a manifold, one can define its torsion:
$$T(X,Y):=\triangledown_X Y - \triangledown_Y X - [X,Y]$$
What is the geometric picture behind this definition&...

**51**

votes

**6**answers

6k views

### Kahler differentials and Ordinary Differentials

What's the relationship between Kahler differentials and ordinary differential forms?

**60**

votes

**9**answers

7k views

### Riemannian surfaces with an explicit distance function?

I'm looking for explicit examples of Riemannian surfaces (two-dimensional Riemannian manifolds $(M,g)$) for which the distance function d(x,y) can be given explicitly in terms of local coordinates of ...

**19**

votes

**2**answers

1k views

### Uniqueness of compactification of an end of a manifold

Let $M$ be an $n$-dimensional manifold (smooth or topological). I call $\bar{M}$ a compactification of $M$ if it is an $n$-dimensional compact manifold with boundary $\partial \bar{M}$, an $(n-1)$-...

**7**

votes

**0**answers

466 views

### Limit cycles as closed geodesics(2)

Hilbert 16th problem asks for a uniform upper bound $H(n)$ for the number of limit cycles of a polynomial vector field of degree $n$ on the plane. Here is an updated proof of the ...

**52**

votes

**3**answers

7k views

### Can every manifold be given an analytic structure?

Let $M$ be a (real) manifold. Recall that an analytic structure on $M$ is an atlas such that all transition maps are real-analytic (and maximal with respect to this property). (There's also a sheafy ...

**67**

votes

**10**answers

22k views

### Is there a complex structure on the 6-sphere?

I don't know who first asked this question, but it's a question that I think many differential and complex geometers have tried to answer because it sounds so simple and fundamental. There are even a ...

**52**

votes

**5**answers

7k views

### Is there a “geometric” intuition underlying the notion of normal varieties?

I first got concious of the notion of normal varieties around 3 years ago and despite the fact that by now I can manipulate with it a bit, this notion still puzzles me a lot.
One thing that strikes me ...

**45**

votes

**0**answers

10k views

### Atiyah's paper on complex structures on $S^6$

M. Atiyah has posted a preprint on arXiv on the non-existence of complex structure on the sphere $S^6$.
https://arxiv.org/abs/1610.09366
It relies on the topological $K$-theory $KR$ and in ...

**1**

vote

**1**answer

344 views

### A curvature description for center condition for quadratic vector field

We consider the quadratic vector field $V$ $$\begin{cases} x'=P(x,y)\\ y'=Q(x,y)
\end {cases}\;\;\;\;(V)$$
where $P,Q \in \mathbb{R}[x,y]$ are polynomials of degree $2$ with $P(0,0)=Q(0,0)=...

**87**

votes

**5**answers

11k views

### When can a Connection Induce a Riemannian Metric for which it is the Levi-Civita Connection?

As we all know, for a Riemannian manifold $(M,g)$, there exists a unique torsion free connection $\nabla_g$, the Levi-Civita connection, that is compatible witht metric.
I was wondering if one can ...

**103**

votes

**9**answers

12k views

### Is there an underlying explanation for the magical powers of the Schwarzian derivative?

Given a function $f(z)$ on the complex plane, define the Schwarzian derivative $S(f)$ to be the function
$S(f) = \frac{f'''}{f'} - \frac{3}{2} (\frac{f''}{f'})^2$
Here is a somewhat more conceptual ...

**36**

votes

**6**answers

36k views

### Determinant of sum of positive definite matrices

Say $A$ and $B$ are symmetric, positive definite matrices. I've proved that
$$\det(A+B) \ge \det(A) + \det(B)$$
in the case that $A$ and $B$ are two dimensional. Is this true in general for $n$-...

**29**

votes

**10**answers

4k views

### Determining a surface in $\mathbb{R}^3$ by its Gaussian curvature

A curve in the plane is determined, up to orientation-preserving
Euclidean
motions, by its curvature function, $\kappa(s)$.
Here is one of my favorite examples, from
Alfred Gray's book,
Modern ...

**28**

votes

**2**answers

2k views

### What are the “correct” conventions for defining Clifford algebras?

I have three related questions about conventions for defining Clifford algebras.
1) Let $(V, q)$ be a quadratic vector space. Should the Clifford algebra $\text{Cliff}(V, q)$ have defining ...

**12**

votes

**1**answer

768 views

### When is a given matrix of two forms a curvature form?

Let's assume we are working over $\mathbb{R}^n$ (but feel free to change to domain to answer the question). I wish to know if the equation $F = dA + A \wedge A$ can be solved for a matrix of 1-forms $...

**7**

votes

**1**answer

674 views

### Sharp Gaussian upper bounds on Heat Kernel

I am looking for references (with proof) for the following statement:
Let $(M, g)$ be a Riemannian manifold with bounded curvature and let $p_t(x , y)$ be the heat kernel of $M$. Let $K$ be compact ...

**4**

votes

**0**answers

364 views

### Limit cycles of quadratic systems and closed geodesics(Finitness of $H(2)$)

This question is inspired by this answer to the question Finding a 1-form adapted to a smooth flow.
Assume that $V$ is a polynomial vector field of degree $2$ as follows:$$\begin{cases} x'=P(...

**83**

votes

**5**answers

8k views

### Is there a sheaf theoretical characterization of a differentiable manifold?

I'm going through the crisis of being unhappy with the textbook definition of a differentiable manifold. I'm wondering whether there is a sheaf-theoretic approach which will make me happier. In a ...

**110**

votes

**7**answers

12k views

### Topology and the 2016 Nobel Prize in Physics

I was very happy to learn that the work which led to the award of the 2016 Nobel Prize in Physics (shared between David J. Thouless, F. Duncan M. Haldane and J. Michael Kosterlitz) uses Topology. In ...

**66**

votes

**4**answers

4k views

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

Are the Milnor's seven dimensional exotic spheres parallelizable?

**58**

votes

**7**answers

11k views

### What is the symbol of a differential operator?

I find Wikipedia's discussion of symbols of differential operators a bit impenetrable, and Google doesn't seem to turn up useful links, so I'm hoping someone can point me to a more pedantic discussion....

**34**

votes

**5**answers

5k views

### A geometric interpretation of the Levi-Civita connection?

Let $M$ be a Riemannian manifold. There exists a unique torsion-free connection in the (co)tangent bundle of $M$ such that the metric of $M$ is covariantly constant. This connection is called the Levi-...

**32**

votes

**4**answers

4k views

### Intuition behind the ricci flow

I hope you don't shoot me for this question.
I try to understand among other things the Ricci flow. However I have no idea of the intuition behind the definition. So my questions is:
What is the ...

**15**

votes

**9**answers

5k views

### Maxwell's equations and differential forms

Is there a textbook that explains Maxwell's equations in differential forms?
What I understood so far is that the $E$ and $B$ fields can be assembled to
a 2-form $F$, and Maxwell's equations can be ...

**36**

votes

**5**answers

2k views

### Surfaces filled densely by a geodesic

Which smooth, closed surfaces $S \subset \mathbb{R}^3$ have no
single geodesic $\gamma$ that fills $S$ densely?
Say a geodesic $\gamma$ "fills $S$ densely" if the closure of the set of points
...

**14**

votes

**4**answers

2k views

### How transitive are the actions of symplectomorphism groups ?

This question is motivated by the classical fact from differential geometry :
Let $M$ be a smooth manifold of dimension at least $2$. Then for any $n$ the diffeomorphism group $\textrm{Diff}(M)$ ...

**11**

votes

**3**answers

2k views

### The conformal group of $S^n$.

Is there any explicit computation of Conf($S^n$, $g_{std}$), the group of conformal diffeomorphisms of the standard $n$-sphere?

**6**

votes

**0**answers

1k views

### The Perturbation of Non Hamiltonian algebraic Vector fields

In this question we are interested in the number of limit cycles which appear in the following perturbational system:
\begin{equation}\cases{
x'=y -x^{2}+\epsilon P(x,y) \\
y'=-x+\epsilon Q(x,y) }
\...

**14**

votes

**3**answers

1k views

### How to draw a Zoll surface?

I take into account that lots of questions on Zoll surfaces have already been asked on the forum. But I will stubbornly continue asking. Are there any chances to draw explicitely at least one Zoll ...

**12**

votes

**2**answers

629 views

### Is a smooth closed surface in Euclidean 3-space rigid?

Classical theorem of Cohn-Vossen: A closed convex surface in Euclidean 3-space cannot be deformed isometrically.
Robert Connelly found an example of a polyhedral surface that can be deformed ...

**11**

votes

**2**answers

1k views

### Compactification of a manifold

This is just a curiosity and the question is really foggy. I'm wondering if there can exist a notion of "minimal smooth compactification" (when I say minimal I think something like adding a finite ...

**7**

votes

**2**answers

627 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 ...

**6**

votes

**2**answers

1k views

### Cotangent bundle lift theorem

Let $M$ be a smooth manifold and $T^\ast M$ be its cotangent bundle. Consider the tautological 1-form $\theta$ on $T^\ast M$ ($\theta=\sum y_i dx^i$ in local canonical coordinate systems).
A ...

**5**

votes

**1**answer

494 views

### Which Kahler Manifolds Are Spin?

As is well-known (see here for a M.O. question) all Kahler manifolds are $spin^c$. I would like to ask which are in fact $spin$.
Taking my motivation from the case of complex projective space, I ...

**3**

votes

**1**answer

803 views

### Projectively equivalent connections

We can define projective structure on a manifold in two ways.
First we can define it as a maximal atlas of charts from the open subsets of manifold to the projective space, such that transitions maps ...

**2**

votes

**1**answer

201 views

### Confusion in definition of Gerbes in Hitchin's notes

I am reading Nigel Hitchin's notes to understand about gerbes.
It starts the article by saying the following :
Before giving a definition, it’s worthwhile to recognize when we, as
mathematicians,...

**3**

votes

**0**answers

327 views

### (Some possible obstructions to ) Limit cycles as closed geodesics(3)

First we explain our Motivation:
Motivation:
First note that there is no a Riemannian metric on an open set of the plane which possess two nested closed geodesics $\gamma_1, \gamma_2$ ...

**3**

votes

**0**answers

138 views

### Flat Riemannian metrics adapted to quadratic vector fields with center

Assume that $P(x,y),Q(x,y)\in \mathbb{R}[x,y]$ are two polynomials of degree $2$ with $P(0,0)=Q(0,0)=0.$
Suppose that the vector field $$\begin{cases} x'=P(x,y)\\ y'=Q(x,y) \end{cases}$$ has a center ...

**3**

votes

**1**answer

277 views

### Diagonal is representable then any morphism is representable

Ariyan Javanpeykar said here in comments that,
If the diagonal is representable, then isn't any morphism $S\rightarrow \mathcal{X}$ with $S$ a scheme representable?
I could not find the statement (...

**150**

votes

**17**answers

25k views

### How do I make the conceptual transition from multivariable calculus to differential forms?

One way to define the algebra of differential forms $\Omega(M)$ on a smooth manifold $M$ (as explained by John Baez's week287) is as the exterior algebra of the dual of the module of derivations on ...

**107**

votes

**18**answers

16k views

### Are there examples of non-orientable manifolds in nature?

Whilst browsing through Marcel Berger's book "A Panoramic View of Riemannian Geometry" and thinking about the Klein bottle, I came across the sentence:
"The unorientable surfaces are never discussed ...

**74**

votes

**6**answers

7k views

### Is there an analogue of curvature in algebraic geometry?

I am not an expert, but there seems to be an enormous technical difference between algebraic geometry and differential/metric geometry stemming from the fact that there is apparently no such thing as ...

**45**

votes

**10**answers

7k views

### de Rham cohomology and flat vector bundles

I was wondering whether there is some notion of "vector bundle de Rham cohomology".
To be more precise: the k-th de Rham cohomology group of a manifold $H_{dR}^{k}(M)$ is defined as the set of closed ...

**58**

votes

**2**answers

6k views

### Cohomology and fundamental classes

Let X be a real orientable compact differentiable manifold. Is the (co)homology of X generated by the fundamental classes of oriented subvarieties? And if not, what is known about the subgroup ...

**56**

votes

**7**answers

5k views

### Example of a manifold which is not a homogeneous space of any Lie group

Every manifold that I ever met in a differential geometry class was a homogeneous space: spheres, tori, Grassmannians, flag manifolds, Stiefel manifolds, etc. What is an example of a connected smooth ...

**50**

votes

**3**answers

3k views

### Operations via Morse Theory

I am interested in seeing if and how Morse Theory can "do everything". Some core things are handle decomposition, Bott periodicity, and Euler characteristic. But what do the normal (co)homology ...