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An introduction to contact topology

Student-Run Geometry/Topology Seminar

Speaker: Jo Nelson, Rice University
Related Webpage: https://math.rice.edu/~jkn3/
Location: 3106 MSB
Start time: Tue, Jan 15 2019, 11:00AM

The origins of contact and symplectic topology stem from Hamilton's reformulation of classical mechanics. Contact topology is the study of geometric structures on odd dimensional smooth manifolds given by a maximally nonintegrable hyperplane field described as the kernel of a 1-form; these hyperplane fields are called contact structures. The associated one form is called a contact form and it uniquely determines a Hamiltonian-like vector field called the Reeb vector field on the manifold. I’ll review all of this and more in my talk which will feature numerous graphics.