# Thread: Algebraic Topology - Fundamental Group and Liftings - Munkres CH 9

1. ## Algebraic Topology - Fundamental Group and Liftings - Munkres CH 9

In Section 54 of his book "Topology" on the Fundamental Group of the Circle, Munkres presents the following Lemma (Lemma 54.1 - see attachment)

Lemma 54.1

Let $p: E \rightarrow B$ be a covering map, let $p( e_0 ) = b_0$.

Any path $f : [0.1] \rightarrow B$ beginning at $b_0$ has a unique lifting to a path $\tilde{f}$ in E beginning at $e_0$

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[My question relates to the proof of the uniqueness of $\tilde{f}$ ]

Munkres begins the proof as follows:

Proof:

Cover B by open sets U each of which is evenly covered by p.

Find a subdivision of [0.1], say $s_0, s_1, .... s_n$ , such that for each i the set $f([s_i, s_{i+1} ])$ lies in an open set U (Use Lebesgue number lemma).

We define the lifting $\tilde{f}$ step by step.

First define $\tilde{f} (0) = e_0$.

Then supposing $\tilde{f} (s)$ is defined for $0 \leq s \leq s_i$ we define $\tilde{f}$] on $[s_i , s_{i+1}$ as follows:

The set $f([s_i, s_{i+1} ])$ lies in some open set U that is evenly covered by p.

Let $\{ V_{\alpha} \}$ be a partition of $p^{-1} (U)$ into slices; each $\{ V_{\alpha} \}$ is mapped homeomorphically onto U by p.

Now $\tilde{f} (s_i)$ lies in one of these sets. ... ... etc etc ... see attachement

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But now focussing on the uniqueness of $\tilde{f}$ - couldn't we define $\tilde{f} (s)$ as belonging to any of the sets $\{ V_{\alpha} \}$ and make this work?

So any of the sets would do since the covering is even.

Then the argument for uniqueness would follow (see page 342 of attachment) - so we would only have one $\tilde{f} (s)$ for each of the $\{ V_{\alpha} \}$ - but this is not may idea of a unique $\tilde{f}$.

Can someone please help clarify Munkres argument regarding the uniqueness of $\tilde{f}$

Peter

2. ## Re: Algebraic Topology - Fundamental Group and Liftings - Munkres CH 9

the uniqueness derives from the fact that we are considering "evenly-covered" open neighborhoods U in B. this means the pre-images p-1(U) are disjoint.

in particular, e0 lies in only one of them. so when we pick the "slice" Vα to restrict p to (for the interval [0,s1]), we pick the one containing e0. so not just any of the slices will do.

when we extend the lifted map $\tilde{f}$ to "the next subinterval", we pick the ONLY pre-image of that U that contains $\tilde{f}(s_i)$.

for example, given the path h(s) = (cos(4πs),sin(4πs)) in B = S1, suppose we choose e0 = 0 in E = R, under the covering map:

p(x) = (cos(x),sin(x)).

for our open cover of the circle, all we need to do is choose "arc-lengths" less than 2pi radians. so let's use:

U1 = p((-π/2, π/2))
U2 = p((0,π))
U3 = p((π/2,3π/2))
U4 = p((π,2π))

now we need to pick our subintervals of [0,1].

we can pick s1 = 3/16, so that h([0,3/16]) ⊂ U1.
we can pick s2 = 7/16, so that h([3/16,7/16]) ⊂ U2.
we can pick s3 = 11/16, so that h([7/16,11/16]) ⊂ U3.
we can pick s4 = 15/16, so that h([11/16,15/16]) ⊂ U4.

finally, we see that h([15/16,1]) ⊂ U1.

now let's look at p-1(U1), which is:

$\bigcup_{k \in \Mathbb{Z}} (-\pi/2+2k\pi,\pi/2+2k\pi)$

only one of these intervals contains the real number 0, namely the one with k = 0. so that's where we start, and since

$p \circ \tilde{h} = h$ we have:

$(\cos(\tilde{h}(s)),\sin(\tilde{h}(s))) = (\cos(4\pi s),\sin(4\pi s))$

on (-π/2,π/2), p is injective, so we see that on [0,3/16], that $\ \tilde{h}(s) = 4\pi s$

(it's the injectivity of p on (-π/2,π/2) that allows us to uniquely "undo" the trig functions).

so that gives us the lift of h on [0,3/16]. to extend this to the next sub-interval [3/16,7/16],

we want to find the interval in the pre-image of U2 that contains $\tilde{h}(3/16) = 3\pi/4$,

which is (0,π). again we see that $\ \tilde{h}(s) = 4\pi s$, on this interval as well.

we continue in this way, obtaining a path in R that goes from 0 to 4π. the only interesting part is when we pick the slice for the last pre-image.

note that although we want a pre-image of the same open set U1, now we want the interval in p-1(U1) that contains $\tilde{h}(15/16) = 15\pi/4$,

which is no longer (-π/2,π/2) but rather (7π/2,9π/2) instead (k = 2, instead of k = 0).

yes, there are other paths in R that p would map to h, but this is the only continuous one.

3. ## Re: Algebraic Topology - Fundamental Group and Liftings - Munkres CH 9

Thanks for the help and guidance, Deveno

Will now work through the post

Peter

4. ## Re: Algebraic Topology - Fundamental Group and Liftings - Munkres CH 9

I am working through Deveno's example - but I have a problem (which may well be an error I am making)

This is annoying since the example illustrates the theorem very well - can anyone help with this possible error?

Problem: It does not appear to me that $\ h( [0, 3/16] ) \subset U_1$ as is required

My working is as follows: (See attachment Example for Munkres - Topology - Lemma 54.1)

To start we have (see Deveno's post above)

$h(s) = (cos \ 4 \pi s, sin \ 4 \pi s )$

p(x) = ( cos x, sin x )

$U_1 = p( \ ( - \pi / 2 , \pi / 2$) )

Now $p( - \pi /2 ) = (cos ( - \pi / 2, sin ( - \pi /2 ) = (0, -1)$

$p( \pi / 2) = (cos \pi / 2 , sin \pi /2) = (0, 1)$

$p (0) = (cos \ 0, sin \ 0 ) = (1,0)$

Now check that $h ( [s_1, s_2] ) = h( [0, 3/16] ) \subset U_1$

$h(s_1) = h(0) = (cos 0, sin 0) = (1,0) \in U_1$

$h(s_2) = h(3/16) = (cos 3 \pi / 4, sin 3 \pi /4 ) = (- 0.7071, + 0.7071)$ which is not in $U_1$ --- Problem!!!

For diagrams see attachment Example for Munkres - Topology - Lemma 54.1

Can anyone help?

5. ## Re: Algebraic Topology - Fundamental Group and Liftings - Munkres CH 9

oh my goodness, you are correct! we need, of course p(h(s1)) to be in U1, so my subinterval is "way too big" (i forgot about the factor of 4).

changing the first to: [0,1/16] we then have: h([0,1/16]) lies in U1.

we should be able to continue then with s2 = 3/16, because h([1/16,3/16]) then lies in U2.

it appears the subintervals (and corresponding U's) should go as follows:

[3/16,5/16] <--> U3
[5/16,7/16] <--> U4
[7/16,9/16] <--> U1
[9/16,11/16] <--> U2
[11/16,13/16] <--> U3
[13/16,15/16] <--> U4
[15/16,1] <--> U1, as before.

which wraps around the circle twice, as i intended.

6. ## Re: Algebraic Topology - Fundamental Group and Liftings - Munkres CH 9

Thanks so much for the revised set of subintervals and Ui

will now rework the problem

So helpful to have an example like this ... I wish the various texts had more such examples or that there was supplementary texts with such examples ... Would make it so much easier for those working alone ... I wish algebraic topology had the equivalent of Project Crazy Project

thanks again

peter