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School of Mathematics

# MATH42052/MATH32052 - 2009/2010

General Information
• Title: Hyperbolic Geometry
• Unit code: MATH42052/MATH32052
• Credits: 15 (MATH42052), 10 (MATH32052),
• Prerequisites: Good Knowledge of Complex numbers.
• Co-requisite units: None
• School responsible: Mathematics
• Member of staff responsible:
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## Specification

### Aims

To provide an introduction to the hyperbolic plane and hyperbolic geometry.  To study how discrete groups of isometries act on the hyperbolic plane.

### Brief Description of the unit

Consider the Euclidean plane R2. If we take a straight line L and a point p not on that line, then there is a unique straight line through p that never intersects L (draw a picture!).  This is Euclid's parallel postulate. Euclid introduced several axioms for what is now called Euclidean geometry (that is, geometry in R2 or more generally in Rn) and a great deal of effort was employed in attempting to prove that these axioms implied the parallel postulate. However, in the early 19th century, the hyperbolic plane was introduced as a setting in which Euclid's axioms hold but the parallel postulate fails: there may be infinitely many 'straight' lines through a point that do not intersect a given 'straight' line.

Today, hyperbolic geometry is a rich and active area of mathematics with many beautiful theorems (and can be used to generate very attractive pictures).

This course provides an introduction to hyperbolic geometry.  We start by discussing what is meant by `distance' and what is 'straight' about a straight line in the Euclidean plane R2. We then give an introduction to the hyperbolic plane. Topics include: distance and area in the hyperbolic plane, distance-preserving maps, hyperbolic trigonometry and hyperbolic polygons.
The collection of all distance-preserving maps forms a group. The second part of the course studies a particular class of such groups, namely Fuchsian groups. By using a very beautiful theorem called Poincare’s Theorem, we will describe the connections between such groups and tessellations (tilings) of the hyperbolic plane. The emphasis here will be on how to calculate with and apply Poincare’s Theorem, rather than on rigorous proofs.

One aim of the course is to show how results and techniques from different areas of mathematics, notably geometry, algebra and analysis, can be used coherently in the study of a single topic.

### Learning Outcomes

On successfully completing the course students will be able to:

• understand the geometry of the hyperbolic plane and be able to prove results and identities in hyperbolic geometry and trigonometry,
• understand other models of the hyperbolic plane, such as the Poincare disc model,
• understand how the group of Möbius transformations acts on the hyperbolic plane by isometries,
• understand how discrete groups of isometries act on the hyperbolic plane and their connections with fundamental domains and Dirichlet regions.

None

### Syllabus

1. Introduction, background and motivation.
2. The upper half-plane model, hyperbolic distance and area, geodesics. The group of Möbius transformations as isometries.
3. The Poincaré disc model. Möbius transformations of the Poincaré disc.
4. Hyperbolic triangles, hyperbolic trigonometry, hyperbolic polygons
5. Classifying different types of isometries.
6. Introduction to discrete groups of isometries.
7. Fundamental domains and Dirichlet regions.
8. Poincaré's theorem and groups generated by side-pairing transformations.

### Textbooks

• J. Anderson, Hyperbolic Geometry, Springer, 1999.
• S. Katok, Fuchsian Groups, Chicago, 1992
• A. Beardon, The Geometry of Discrete Groups, Springer, 1983

The book by Anderson is the most suitable for the course.  The additional reading material is based on material from Katok's book.

### Teaching and learning methods

Two lectures a week and a weekly examples class

### Assessment

MATH32052: Two hours end of semester examination; Weighting within unit 100%
MATH42052: Three hours end of semester examination; Weighting within unit 100%

## Arrangements

On-line course materials for this unit.