Open Neighborhood Seminar: Negatively curved crystals


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February 5, 2020 4:30 pm - 5:30 pm
Science Center 507
Address: 1 Oxford Street, Cambridge, MA 02138 USA

Curtis McMullen - Harvard University

Imagine the universe is a periodic crystal. If gravity makes space negatively curved, the thin walls of the crystalline structure might trace out a pattern of circles in the sky, visible at night. In this talk we will describe how to generate pictures of these patterns and how to think like a hyperbolic astronomer. We also touch on the connection to knots and links and arithmetic groups. The lecture is accompanied by an exhibit of prints in the Science Center lobby. (This talk will be accessible to members of the department at all levels.)