Remarks on the geometry of almost complex 6-manifolds
This article is mostly a writeup of two talks, the first given in the Besse Seminar at the Ecole Polytechnique in 1998 and the second given at the 2000 International Congress on Differential Geometry in memory of Alfred Gray in Bilbao, Spain. It begins with a discussion of basic geometry of almost complex 6-manifolds. In particular, I define a 2-parameter family of intrinsic first-order functionals on almost complex structures on 6-manifolds and compute their Euler-Lagrange equations. It also includes a discussion of a natural generalization of holomorphic bundles over complex manifolds to the almost complex case. The general almost complex manifold will not admit any nontrivial bundles of this type, but there is a large class of nonintegrable almost complex manifolds for which there are such nontrivial bundles. For example, the standard almost complex structure on the 6-sphere admits such nontrivial bundles. This class of almost complex manifolds in dimension 6 will be referred to as quasi-integrable. Some of the properties of quasi-integrable structures (both almost complex and unitary) are developed and some examples are given. However, it turns out that quasi-integrability is not an involutive condition, so the full generality of these structures in Cartan's sense is not well-understood.
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Phillip Griffiths Professor of Mathematics
My research concerns problems in the geometric theory of partial differential equations. More specifically, I work on conservation laws for PDE, Finsler geometry, projective geometry, and Riemannian geometry, including calibrations and the theory of holonomy. Much of my work involves or develops techniques for studying systems of partial differential equations that arise in geometric problems. Because of their built-in invariance properties, these systems often have specia