For any open set and function such that is a homeomorphism onto a subset of , the pair is called a coordinate neighborhood (or chart in some literature). The values for some are called the coordinates of .
(the range of ) for some coordinate
neighborhood . Since and are homeomorphic via
, the inverse function can also be defined. It
turns out that the inverse is the familiar idea of a
parameterization. Continuing Example 8.11,
yields the mapping
, which is the familiar parameterization of
the circle but restricted to
To make differentiation work at a point , it will be important to have a coordinate neighborhood defined over an open subset of that contains . This is mainly because defining derivatives of a function at a point requires that an open set exists around the point. If the coordinates appear to have no boundary, then this will be possible. It is unfortunately not possible to cover all of with a single coordinate neighborhood, unless (or is at least homeomorphic to ). We must therefore define multiple neighborhoods for which the domains cover all of . Since every domain is an open set, some of these domains must overlap. What happens in this case? We may have two or more alternative coordinates for the same point. Moving from one set of coordinates to another is the familiar operation used in calculus called a change of coordinates. This will now be formalized.
Suppose that and are coordinate neighborhoods on some manifold , and . Figure 8.9 indicates how to change coordinates from to . This change of coordinates is expressed using function composition as ( maps from into , and maps from a subset of to ).
We can construct another coordinate function by using quaternions. This may appear to be a problem because quaternions have four components; however, the fourth component can be determined from the other three. Using (4.24) to (4.26), the , , and coordinates can be determined.
Now suppose that we would like to change from Euler angles to
quaternions in the overlap region , in which is an open
set on which the coordinate neighborhood for quaternions is defined.
The task is to construct a change of coordinates,
. We first have to invert over . This means that
we instead need a parameterization of in terms of Euler angles.
This is given by (3.42), which yields a rotation matrix,
for , , and
. Once this matrix is determined, then can be applied
to it to determine the quaternion parameters, , , and . This
means that we have constructed three real-valued functions, ,
, and , which yield
Together, these define
There are several reasons for performing coordinate changes in various contexts. Example 8.12 is motivated by a change that frequently occurs in motion planning. Imagine, for example, that a graphics package displays objects using quaternions, but a collision-detection algorithm uses Euler angles. It may be necessary in such cases to frequently change coordinates. From studies of calculus, you may recall changing coordinates to simplify an integral. In the definition of a smooth manifold, another motivation arises. Since coordinate neighborhoods are based on homeomorphisms of open sets, several may be required just to cover all of . For example, even if we decide to use quaternions for , several coordinate neighborhoods that map to quaternions may be needed. On the intersections of their domains, a change of coordinates is necessary.
Now we are ready to define a smooth manifold. Changes of coordinates will appear in the manifold definition, and they must satisfy a smoothness condition. A smooth structure8.5 on a (topological) manifold is a family8.6 of coordinate neighborhoods such that:
A manifold, as defined in Section 4.1.2, together with a smooth structure is called a smooth manifold.8.8
The smooth structure can alternatively be defined using only two
coordinate neighborhoods by using stereographic projection. For
, one coordinate function maps almost every point
by drawing a ray from the north pole to and mapping to
the point in the plane that is crossed by the ray. The only
excluded point is the north pole itself. A similar mapping can be
constructed from the south pole.
A smooth structure can be specified by only coordinate neighborhoods. For each from to , let
A smooth structure over can be derived as a special case because is topologically equivalent to . Suppose elements of are expressed using unit quaternions. Each is considered as a point on . There are four coordinate neighborhoods. For example, one of them is
Steven M LaValle 2012-04-20