The Willmore energy of degenerating surfaces and singularities of geometric flows

This project wants to study the behavior of geometric objects in situations that include limiting or degenerating properties.

The first object are immersed closed surfaces that degenerate in moduli space. For oriented surfaces it is known that the Willmore energy cannot drop under a certain level. This geometric property of surfaces at the boundary of moduli space was used to show compactness of a certain sequence of immersions if one can make sure to stay below that energy level.  A similar result was obtained for Klein bottles. The project wants to study non-orientable closed surfaces degenerating in moduli space also for higher (non-orientable) genera.

The second object are surfaces or curves that move under the volume preserving mean curvature flow. Among the objectives of this project are a criterion that guarantees the appearance of a singularity for the flow with Neumann free boundary conditions, the comparison of the properties of these singularities to other geometric flows and other/no boundary conditions, and the study of limits of the flow without singularities, in particular with respect to the relative isoperimetry problem.


    Team Members

    Dr. Elena Mäder-Baumdicker
    Project leader
    Karlsruher Institut für Technologie