nLab vertical vector field



Differential geometry

synthetic differential geometry


from point-set topology to differentiable manifolds

geometry of physics: coordinate systems, smooth spaces, manifolds, smooth homotopy types, supergeometry



smooth space


The magic algebraic facts




infinitesimal cohesion

tangent cohesion

differential cohesion

graded differential cohesion

singular cohesion

id id fermionic bosonic bosonic Rh rheonomic reduced infinitesimal infinitesimal & étale cohesive ʃ discrete discrete continuous * \array{ && id &\dashv& id \\ && \vee && \vee \\ &\stackrel{fermionic}{}& \rightrightarrows &\dashv& \rightsquigarrow & \stackrel{bosonic}{} \\ && \bot && \bot \\ &\stackrel{bosonic}{} & \rightsquigarrow &\dashv& \mathrm{R}\!\!\mathrm{h} & \stackrel{rheonomic}{} \\ && \vee && \vee \\ &\stackrel{reduced}{} & \Re &\dashv& \Im & \stackrel{infinitesimal}{} \\ && \bot && \bot \\ &\stackrel{infinitesimal}{}& \Im &\dashv& \& & \stackrel{\text{étale}}{} \\ && \vee && \vee \\ &\stackrel{cohesive}{}& \esh &\dashv& \flat & \stackrel{discrete}{} \\ && \bot && \bot \\ &\stackrel{discrete}{}& \flat &\dashv& \sharp & \stackrel{continuous}{} \\ && \vee && \vee \\ && \emptyset &\dashv& \ast }


Lie theory, ∞-Lie theory

differential equations, variational calculus

Chern-Weil theory, ∞-Chern-Weil theory

Cartan geometry (super, higher)



Vertical vector fields

Let π:PX\pi : P \to X be a bundle in the category of SmoothManifolds. A vector field vΓ(TP)v \in \Gamma(T P) is vertical with respect to this bundle if it is in the kernel of the derivative dπ:TPTXd \pi \colon T P \to T X.

Vertical tangent bundle

The collection of vertical vectors forms the vertical tangent bundle inside the full tangent bundle, typically denoted T πPT_\pi P.

For π:PB\pi \colon P \to B a smooth function between smooth manifolds, its vertical tangent bundle is the fiber-wise kernel of the differential dπd \pi, as shown in the following diagram (e.g Tu 17 (27.4), Berglund 20, p. 16):

Horizontal differential forms

A differential form on PP is a horizontal differential form with respect to PXP \to X it it vanishes on vertical vector fields.



If PπXP \overset{\pi}{\longrightarrow} X is a surjective submersion (for instance a smooth fiber bundle) then the full tangent bundle of its total space PP is isomorphic to the direct sum of the vertical tangent bundle (above) with the pullback of the tangent bundle of the base space:

TP(π *TB) P(T πP) T P \;\simeq\; \big( \pi^\ast T B \big) \oplus_P \big( T_\pi P \big)


The assumption that π\pi is a surjective submersion implies that dπ:TPπ *TBd \pi \colon T P \longrightarrow \pi^\ast T B is a surjection and hence that

0T πPTPdππ *TB0 0 \to T_\pi P \longrightarrow T P \overset{d \pi}{\longrightarrow} \pi^\ast T B \to 0

is a short exact sequence of smooth real vector bundles.

Now all short exact sequences of real vector bundles over paracompact topological spaces (such as smooth manifolds) split (by a choice of fiberwise metric, see at short exact sequence of vector bundles), which is the statement to be shown.



(vertical tangent bundle of a real vector bundle) Let π:𝒱M\pi \colon \mathcal{V} \longrightarrow M be a real vector bundle. Then its vertical tangent bundle is isomorphic to the its pullback along itself:

T π𝒱 𝒱π *𝒱. T_\pi \mathcal{V} \;\simeq_{{}_{\mathcal{V}}}\; \pi^\ast \mathcal{V} \,.

(e.g. tomDieck 00 (6.9), tomDieck 08 (15.6.7), Gollinger 16, inside the proof of Prop. 1.1.9)


(stable tangent bundle of unit sphere bundle)
The once-stabilized tangent bundle of a unit sphere bundle S(𝒱)S(\mathcal{V}) in a real vector bundle 𝒱pM\mathcal{V} \overset{p}{\longrightarrow} M (Example ) over a smooth manifold MM is isomorphic to the pullback of the direct sum of the stable tangent bundle of the base manifold with that vector bundle:

TS(𝒱)× MS(p) *(TM M𝒱). T S(\mathcal{V}) \times \mathbb{R} \; \simeq_{{}_M} \; S(p)^\ast \big( T M \oplus_M \mathcal{V} \big) \,.

This is stated without proof as Crowley-Escher 03, Fact. 3.1, apparently reading between the lines in Milnor 56, p. 403. The key sub-statement that

T S(p)S(𝒱)× M𝒱 T_{S(p)} S(\mathcal{V}) \times \mathbb{R} \;\simeq_{{}_M}\; \mathcal{V}

is made explicit in Gollinger 16, Prop. 1.1.9


Consider first the actual tangent bundle but to the open ball/disk-fiber bundle D(𝒱)D(\mathcal{V}) that fills the given sphere-fiber bundle: By the standard splitting (this Prop.) this is the direct sum

T(D(𝒱))(D(p) *TM) MT pD(𝒱), T \big( D(\mathcal{V}) \big) \;\simeq\; \big( D(p)^\ast T M \big) \oplus_M T_p D(\mathcal{V}) \,,

where T pD(𝒱)T_p D(\mathcal{V}) is the vertical tangent bundle of the disk bundle. But, by definition of disk bundles, that is the restriction of the vertical tangent bundle of the vector bundle 𝒱\mathcal{V} itself, and that is just the pullback of that vector bundle along itself (by this Example):

(D(p) *TM) M(D(p) *𝒱) D(p) *(TM M𝒱). \begin{aligned} \cdots & \simeq\; \big( D(p)^\ast T M \big) \oplus_M \big( D(p)^\ast \mathcal{V} \big) \\ & \simeq\; D(p)^\ast \big( T M \oplus_M \mathcal{V} \big) \,. \end{aligned}

To conclude, it just remains to observe that the normal bundle of the n-sphere-boundary inside the (n+1)(n+1)-ball is manifestly trivial, so that the restriction of the tangent bundle of D(𝒱)D(\mathcal{V}) to S(𝒱)S(\mathcal{V}) is the stable tangent bundle of S(𝒱)S(\mathcal{V}).


Textbook accounts:

See also:

Last revised on June 4, 2022 at 16:49:35. See the history of this page for a list of all contributions to it.