In
mathematicsMathematics is the study of quantity, space, structure, and change. Mathematicians seek out patterns and formulate new conjectures. Mathematicians resolve the truth or falsity of conjectures by mathematical proofs, which are arguments sufficient to convince other mathematicians of their validity...
,
hyperbolic geometry (also called
Lobachevskian geometry or
BolyaiJános Bolyai was a Hungarian mathematician, known for his work in nonEuclidean geometry.Bolyai was born in the Transylvanian town of Kolozsvár , then part of the Habsburg Empire , the son of Zsuzsanna Benkő and the wellknown mathematician Farkas Bolyai.Life:By the age of 13, he had mastered...
Lobachevskian geometry) is a
nonEuclidean geometryNonEuclidean geometry is the term used to refer to two specific geometries which are, loosely speaking, obtained by negating the Euclidean parallel postulate, namely hyperbolic and elliptic geometry. This is one term which, for historical reasons, has a meaning in mathematics which is much...
, meaning that the
parallel postulateIn geometry, the parallel postulate, also called Euclid's fifth postulate because it is the fifth postulate in Euclid's Elements, is a distinctive axiom in Euclidean geometry...
of
Euclidean geometryEuclidean geometry is a mathematical system attributed to the Alexandrian Greek mathematician Euclid, which he described in his textbook on geometry: the Elements. Euclid's method consists in assuming a small set of intuitively appealing axioms, and deducing many other propositions from these...
is replaced. The parallel postulate in Euclidean geometry is equivalent to the statement that, in two dimensional space, for any given line
R and point
P not on
R, there is exactly one line through
P that does not intersect
R; i.e., that is parallel to
R. In hyperbolic geometry there are at least two distinct lines through
P which do not intersect
R, so the parallel postulate is false. Models have been constructed within Euclidean geometry that obey the axioms of hyperbolic geometry, thus proving that the parallel postulate is independent of the other postulates of Euclid.
Because there is no precise hyperbolic analogue to Euclidean parallel lines, the hyperbolic use of
parallel and related terms varies among writers. In this article, the two limiting lines are called
asymptotic and lines sharing a common perpendicular are called
ultraparallel; the simple word
parallel may apply to both.
A characteristic property of hyperbolic geometry is that the angles of a triangle add to
less than a straight angle. In the limit as the vertices go to infinity, there are even
ideal hyperbolic trianglesIn hyperbolic geometry an ideal triangle is a hyperbolic triangle whose three vertices all lie on the circle at infinity. In the hyperbolic metric, any two ideal triangles are congruent...
in which all three angles are 0°.
Nonintersecting lines
An interesting property of hyperbolic geometry follows from the occurrence of more than one line parallel to
R through a point
P, not on
R: there are two classes of nonintersecting lines. Let
B be the point on
R such that the line
PB is perpendicular to
R. Consider the line
x through
P such that
x does not intersect
R, and the angle θ between
PB and
x counterclockwise from
PB is as small as possible; i.e., any smaller angle will force the line to intersect
R. This is called an asymptotic line in hyperbolic geometry. Symmetrically, the line
y that forms the same angle θ between
PB and itself but clockwise from
PB will also be asymptotic.
x and
y are the only two lines asymptotic to
R through
P. All other lines through
P not intersecting
R, with angles greater than θ with
PB, are called ultraparallel (or disjointly parallel) to
R. Notice that since there are an infinite number of possible angles between θ and 90°, and each one will determine two lines through
P and disjointly parallel to
R, there exist an infinite number of ultraparallel lines.
Thus we have this modified form of the parallel postulate: In hyperbolic geometry, given any line
R, and point
P not on
R, there are exactly two lines through
P which are asymptotic to
R, and infinitely many lines through
P ultraparallel to
R.
The differences between these types of lines can also be looked at in the following way: the distance between asymptotic lines shrinks toward zero in one direction and grows without bound in the other; the distance between ultraparallel lines (eventually) increases in both directions. The
ultraparallel theoremIn hyperbolic geometry, the ultraparallel theorem states that every pair of ultraparallel lines in the hyperbolic plane has a unique common perpendicular hyperbolic line.Proof in the Poincaré halfplane model:Leta...
states that there is a
unique line in the hyperbolic plane that is perpendicular to each of a given pair of ultraparallel lines.
In Euclidean geometry, the "angle of parallelism" is a constant; that is, any distance
between parallel lines yields an angle of parallelism equal to 90°. In hyperbolic geometry, the
angle of parallelismIn hyperbolic geometry, the angle of parallelism φ, also known as Π, is the angle at one vertex of a right hyperbolic triangle that has two asymptotic parallel sides. The angle depends on the segment length a between the right angle and the vertex of the angle of parallelism φ...
varies with the Π(
p) function. This function, described by
Nikolai Ivanovich LobachevskyNikolai Ivanovich Lobachevsky was a Russian mathematician and geometer, renowned primarily for his pioneering works on hyperbolic geometry, otherwise known as Lobachevskian geometry...
, produces a unique angle of parallelism for each distance
p =
. As the distance gets shorter, Π(
p) approaches 90°, whereas with increasing distance Π(
p) approaches 0°. Thus, as distances get smaller, the hyperbolic plane behaves more and more like Euclidean geometry. Indeed, on small scales compared to
, where
K is the (constant)
Gaussian curvatureIn differential geometry, the Gaussian curvature or Gauss curvature of a point on a surface is the product of the principal curvatures, κ1 and κ2, of the given point. It is an intrinsic measure of curvature, i.e., its value depends only on how distances are measured on the surface, not on the way...
of the plane, an observer would have a hard time determining whether the environment is Euclidean or hyperbolic.
Triangles
Distances in the hyperbolic plane can be measured in terms of a unit of length
, analogous to the radius of the sphere in
spherical geometrySpherical geometry is the geometry of the twodimensional surface of a sphere. It is an example of a geometry which is not Euclidean. Two practical applications of the principles of spherical geometry are to navigation and astronomy....
. Using this unit of length a theorem in hyperbolic geometry can be stated which is analogous to the
Pythagorean theoremIn mathematics, the Pythagorean theorem or Pythagoras' theorem is a relation in Euclidean geometry among the three sides of a right triangle...
. If
a, b are the legs and
c is the hypotenuse of a right triangle all measured in this unit then:


The
cosh function is a
hyperbolic functionIn mathematics, hyperbolic functions are analogs of the ordinary trigonometric, or circular, functions. The basic hyperbolic functions are the hyperbolic sine "sinh" , and the hyperbolic cosine "cosh" , from which are derived the hyperbolic tangent "tanh" and so on.Just as the points form a...
which is an analog of the standard cosine function. All six of the standard trigonometric functions have hyperbolic analogs. In trigonometric relations involving the sides and angles of a hyperbolic triangle the hyperbolic functions are applied to the sides and the standard trigonometric functions are applied to the angles. For example the law of sines for hyperbolic triangles is:
For more of these trigonometric relationships see
hyperbolic triangleIn mathematics, the term hyperbolic triangle has more than one meaning.Hyperbolic geometry:In hyperbolic geometry, a hyperbolic triangle is a figure in the hyperbolic plane, analogous to a triangle in Euclidean geometry, consisting of three sides and three angles...
s.
Unlike Euclidean triangles whose angles always add up to 180° or π
radianRadian is the ratio between the length of an arc and its radius. The radian is the standard unit of angular measure, used in many areas of mathematics. The unit was formerly a SI supplementary unit, but this category was abolished in 1995 and the radian is now considered a SI derived unit...
s the sum of the angles of a hyperbolic triangle is always strictly less than 180°. The difference is sometimes referred to as the
defectIn geometry, the defect means the failure of some angles to add up to the expected amount of 360° or 180°, when such angles in the plane would...
. The area of a hyperbolic triangle is given by its defect multiplied by R² where
. As a consequence all hyperbolic triangles have an area which is less than R²π. The area of an ideal hyperbolic triangle is equal to this maximum.
As in
spherical geometrySpherical geometry is the geometry of the twodimensional surface of a sphere. It is an example of a geometry which is not Euclidean. Two practical applications of the principles of spherical geometry are to navigation and astronomy....
the only similar triangles are congruent triangles.
Circles, spheres and balls
In hyperbolic geometry the circumference of a circle of radius
r is greater than 2π
r. It is in fact equal to
The area of the enclosed disk is
The surface area of a sphere is
The volume of the enclosed ball is
For the measure of an
n1 sphere in
n dimensional space the corresponding
expression is
where the full
n dimensional
solid angleThe solid angle, Ω, is the twodimensional angle in threedimensional space that an object subtends at a point. It is a measure of how large that object appears to an observer looking from that point...
is
using
for the
Gamma functionIn mathematics, the gamma function is an extension of the factorial function, with its argument shifted down by 1, to real and complex numbers...
.
The measure of the enclosed
n ball is:
History
A number of geometers made attempts to prove the
parallel postulateIn geometry, the parallel postulate, also called Euclid's fifth postulate because it is the fifth postulate in Euclid's Elements, is a distinctive axiom in Euclidean geometry...
by assuming its negation and trying to derive a contradiction, including
ProclusProclus Lycaeus , called "The Successor" or "Diadochos" , was a Greek Neoplatonist philosopher, one of the last major Classical philosophers . He set forth one of the most elaborate and fully developed systems of Neoplatonism...
, Ibn alHaytham (Alhacen),
Omar KhayyámOmar Khayyám was aPersian polymath: philosopher, mathematician, astronomer and poet. He also wrote treatises on mechanics, geography, mineralogy, music, climatology and theology....
,
Nasir alDin alTusiKhawaja Muḥammad ibn Muḥammad ibn Ḥasan Ṭūsī , better known as Naṣīr alDīn alṬūsī , was a Persian polymath and prolific writer: an astronomer, biologist, chemist, mathematician, philosopher, physician, physicist, scientist, theologian and Marja Taqleed...
,
WiteloWitelo was a friar, theologian and scientist: a physicist, natural philosopher, mathematician. He is an important figure in the history of philosophy in Poland...
,
GersonidesLevi ben Gershon, better known by his Latinised name as Gersonides or the abbreviation of first letters as RaLBaG , philosopher, Talmudist, mathematician, astronomer/astrologer. He was born at Bagnols in Languedoc, France...
,
AlfonsoAlfonso , Alfons , Afonso , Affonso , Alphonse, Alfonse , Αλφόνσος , Alphonsus , Alphons , Alfonsu in ,...
, and later Giovanni Gerolamo Saccheri,
John Wallis,
Johann Heinrich LambertJohann Heinrich Lambert was a Swiss mathematician, physicist, philosopher and astronomer.Asteroid 187 Lamberta was named in his honour.Biography:...
, and
LegendreAdrienMarie Legendre was a French mathematician.The Moon crater Legendre is named after him. Life :...
.
Their attempts failed, but their efforts gave birth to hyperbolic geometry.
The theorems of Alhacen, Khayyam and alTusi on
quadrilateralIn Euclidean plane geometry, a quadrilateral is a polygon with four sides and four vertices or corners. Sometimes, the term quadrangle is used, by analogy with triangle, and sometimes tetragon for consistency with pentagon , hexagon and so on...
s, including the Ibn alHaytham–Lambert quadrilateral and Khayyam–Saccheri quadrilateral, were the first theorems on hyperbolic geometry. Their works on hyperbolic geometry had a considerable influence on its development among later European geometers, including Witelo, Gersonides, Alfonso, John Wallis and Saccheri.
In the 18th century,
Johann Heinrich LambertJohann Heinrich Lambert was a Swiss mathematician, physicist, philosopher and astronomer.Asteroid 187 Lamberta was named in his honour.Biography:...
introduced the hyperbolic functions and computed the area of a
hyperbolic triangleIn mathematics, the term hyperbolic triangle has more than one meaning.Hyperbolic geometry:In hyperbolic geometry, a hyperbolic triangle is a figure in the hyperbolic plane, analogous to a triangle in Euclidean geometry, consisting of three sides and three angles...
.
In the nineteenth century, hyperbolic geometry was extensively explored by
János BolyaiJános Bolyai was a Hungarian mathematician, known for his work in nonEuclidean geometry.Bolyai was born in the Transylvanian town of Kolozsvár , then part of the Habsburg Empire , the son of Zsuzsanna Benkő and the wellknown mathematician Farkas Bolyai.Life:By the age of 13, he had mastered...
and
Nikolai Ivanovich LobachevskyNikolai Ivanovich Lobachevsky was a Russian mathematician and geometer, renowned primarily for his pioneering works on hyperbolic geometry, otherwise known as Lobachevskian geometry...
, after whom it sometimes is named. Lobachevsky published in 1830, while Bolyai independently discovered it and published in 1832.
Carl Friedrich GaussJohann Carl Friedrich Gauss was a German mathematician and scientist who contributed significantly to many fields, including number theory, statistics, analysis, differential geometry, geodesy, geophysics, electrostatics, astronomy and optics.Sometimes referred to as the Princeps mathematicorum...
also studied hyperbolic geometry, describing in a 1824 letter to Taurinus that he had constructed it, but did not publish his work. In 1868,
Eugenio BeltramiEugenio Beltrami was an Italian mathematician notable for his work concerning differential geometry and mathematical physics...
provided models of it, and used this to prove that hyperbolic geometry was consistent if Euclidean geometry was.
The term "hyperbolic geometry" was introduced by
Felix KleinChristian Felix Klein was a German mathematician, known for his work in group theory, function theory, nonEuclidean geometry, and on the connections between geometry and group theory...
in 1871.
For more history, see article on
nonEuclidean geometryNonEuclidean geometry is the term used to refer to two specific geometries which are, loosely speaking, obtained by negating the Euclidean parallel postulate, namely hyperbolic and elliptic geometry. This is one term which, for historical reasons, has a meaning in mathematics which is much...
, and the references Coxeter and Milnor.
Models of the hyperbolic plane
There are four
modelA mathematical model is a description of a system using mathematical concepts and language. The process of developing a mathematical model is termed mathematical modeling. Mathematical models are used not only in the natural sciences and engineering disciplines A mathematical model is a...
s commonly used for hyperbolic geometry: the
Klein modelIn geometry, the Beltrami–Klein model, also called the projective model, Klein disk model, and the Cayley–Klein model, is a model of ndimensional hyperbolic geometry in which points are represented by the points in the interior of the ndimensional unit ball and lines are represented by the...
, the Poincaré disc model, the
Poincaré halfplane modelIn nonEuclidean geometry, the Poincaré halfplane model is the upper halfplane , together with a metric, the Poincaré metric, that makes it a model of twodimensional hyperbolic geometry....
, and the Lorentz model, or
hyperboloid modelIn geometry, the hyperboloid model, also known as the Minkowski model or the Lorentz model , is a model of ndimensional hyperbolic geometry in which points are represented by the points on the forward sheet S+ of a twosheeted hyperboloid in dimensional Minkowski space and mplanes are...
. These models define a real
hyperbolic spaceIn mathematics, hyperbolic space is a type of nonEuclidean geometry. Whereas spherical geometry has a constant positive curvature, hyperbolic geometry has a negative curvature: every point in hyperbolic space is a saddle point...
which satisfies the axioms of a hyperbolic geometry. Despite their names, the first three mentioned above were introduced as models of hyperbolic space by Beltrami, not by Poincaré or Klein.
 The Klein model
In geometry, the Beltrami–Klein model, also called the projective model, Klein disk model, and the Cayley–Klein model, is a model of ndimensional hyperbolic geometry in which points are represented by the points in the interior of the ndimensional unit ball and lines are represented by the...
, also known as the projective disc model and BeltramiEugenio Beltrami was an Italian mathematician notable for his work concerning differential geometry and mathematical physics...
Klein model, uses the interior of a circle for the hyperbolic planeIn mathematics, a plane is a flat, twodimensional surface. A plane is the two dimensional analogue of a point , a line and a space...
, and chordA chord of a circle is a geometric line segment whose endpoints both lie on the circumference of the circle.A secant or a secant line is the line extension of a chord. More generally, a chord is a line segment joining two points on any curve, such as but not limited to an ellipse...
s of the circle as lines.
 This model has the advantage of simplicity, but the disadvantage that angle
In geometry, an angle is the figure formed by two rays sharing a common endpoint, called the vertex of the angle.Angles are usually presumed to be in a Euclidean plane with the circle taken for standard with regard to direction. In fact, an angle is frequently viewed as a measure of an circular arc...
s in the hyperbolic plane are distorted.
 The distance in this model is the crossratio
In geometry, the crossratio, also called double ratio and anharmonic ratio, is a special number associated with an ordered quadruple of collinear points, particularly points on a projective line...
, which was introduced by Arthur CayleyArthur Cayley F.R.S. was a British mathematician. He helped found the modern British school of pure mathematics....
in projective geometryIn mathematics, projective geometry is the study of geometric properties that are invariant under projective transformations. This means that, compared to elementary geometry, projective geometry has a different setting, projective space, and a selective set of basic geometric concepts...
.
 The Poincaré disc model, also known as the conformal disc model, also employs the interior of a circle, but lines are represented by arcs of circles that are orthogonal to the boundary circle, plus diameters of the boundary circle.
 The Poincaré halfplane model
In nonEuclidean geometry, the Poincaré halfplane model is the upper halfplane , together with a metric, the Poincaré metric, that makes it a model of twodimensional hyperbolic geometry....
takes onehalf of the Euclidean plane, as determined by a Euclidean line B, to be the hyperbolic plane (B itself is not included).
 Hyperbolic lines are then either halfcircles orthogonal to B or rays perpendicular to B.
 Both Poincaré models preserve hyperbolic angles, and are thereby conformal
In mathematics, a conformal map is a function which preserves angles. In the most common case the function is between domains in the complex plane.More formally, a map,...
. All isometries within these models are therefore Möbius transformations.
 The halfplane model is identical (at the limit) to the Poincaré disc model at the edge of the disc
 The Lorentz model or hyperboloid model
In geometry, the hyperboloid model, also known as the Minkowski model or the Lorentz model , is a model of ndimensional hyperbolic geometry in which points are represented by the points on the forward sheet S+ of a twosheeted hyperboloid in dimensional Minkowski space and mplanes are...
employs a 2dimensional hyperboloid of revolution (of two sheets, but using one) embedded in 3dimensional Minkowski spaceIn physics and mathematics, Minkowski space or Minkowski spacetime is the mathematical setting in which Einstein's theory of special relativity is most conveniently formulated...
. This model is generally credited to Poincaré, but Reynolds (see below) says that Wilhelm KillingWilhelm Karl Joseph Killing was a German mathematician who made important contributions to the theories of Lie algebras, Lie groups, and nonEuclidean geometry....
and Karl WeierstrassKarl Theodor Wilhelm Weierstrass was a German mathematician who is often cited as the "father of modern analysis". Biography :Weierstrass was born in Ostenfelde, part of Ennigerloh, Province of Westphalia....
used this model from 1872.
 This model has direct application to special relativity
Special relativity is the physical theory of measurement in an inertial frame of reference proposed in 1905 by Albert Einstein in the paper "On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies".It generalizes Galileo's...
, as Minkowski 3space is a model for spacetimeIn physics, spacetime is any mathematical model that combines space and time into a single continuum. Spacetime is usually interpreted with space as being threedimensional and time playing the role of a fourth dimension that is of a different sort from the spatial dimensions...
, suppressing one spatial dimension. One can take the hyperboloid to represent the events that various moving observers, radiating outward in a spatial plane from a single point, will reach in a fixed proper timeIn relativity, proper time is the elapsed time between two events as measured by a clock that passes through both events. The proper time depends not only on the events but also on the motion of the clock between the events. An accelerated clock will measure a smaller elapsed time between two...
. The hyperbolic distance between two points on the hyperboloid can then be identified with the relative rapidityIn relativity, rapidity is an alternative to speed as a framework for measuring motion. On parallel velocities rapidities are simply additive, unlike speeds at relativistic velocities. For low speeds, rapidity and speed are proportional, but for high speeds, rapidity takes a larger value. The...
between the two corresponding observers.
Connection between the models
The four models essentially describe the same structure. The difference between them is that they represent different
coordinate chartsIn mathematics, particularly topology, one describesa manifold using an atlas. An atlas consists of individualcharts that, roughly speaking, describe individual regionsof the manifold. If the manifold is the surface of the Earth,...
laid down on the same
metric spaceIn mathematics, a metric space is a set where a notion of distance between elements of the set is defined.The metric space which most closely corresponds to our intuitive understanding of space is the 3dimensional Euclidean space...
, namely the
hyperbolic spaceIn mathematics, hyperbolic space is a type of nonEuclidean geometry. Whereas spherical geometry has a constant positive curvature, hyperbolic geometry has a negative curvature: every point in hyperbolic space is a saddle point...
. The characteristic feature of the hyperbolic space itself is that it has a constant negative
scalar curvatureIn Riemannian geometry, the scalar curvature is the simplest curvature invariant of a Riemannian manifold. To each point on a Riemannian manifold, it assigns a single real number determined by the intrinsic geometry of the manifold near that point...
, which is indifferent to the coordinate chart used. The
geodesicIn mathematics, a geodesic is a generalization of the notion of a "straight line" to "curved spaces". In the presence of a Riemannian metric, geodesics are defined to be the shortest path between points in the space...
s are similarly invariant: that is, geodesics map to geodesics under coordinate transformation. Hyperbolic geometry generally is introduced in terms of the geodesics and their intersections on the hyperbolic space.
Once we choose a coordinate chart (one of the "models"), we can always
embed it in a Euclidean space of same dimension, but the embedding is clearly not isometric (since the scalar curvature of Euclidean space is 0). The hyperbolic space can be represented by infinitely many different charts; but the embeddings in Euclidean space due to these four specific charts show some interesting characteristics.
Since the four models describe the same metric space, each can be transformed into the other. See, for example, the Beltrami–Klein model's relation to the hyperboloid model, the Beltrami–Klein model's relation to the Poincaré disk model, and the Poincaré disk model's relation to the hyperboloid model.
Visualizing hyperbolic geometry
M. C. EscherMaurits Cornelis Escher , usually referred to as M. C. Escher , was a Dutch graphic artist. He is known for his often mathematically inspired woodcuts, lithographs, and mezzotints...
's famous prints
Circle Limit III and
Circle Limit IV
illustrate the conformal disc model quite well. The white lines in
III are not quite geodesics (they are
hypercyclesIn hyperbolic geometry, a hypercycle, hypercircle or equidistant curve is a curve whose points have the same orthogonal distance from a given straight line.Given a straight line L and a point P not on L,...
), but are quite close to them. It is also possible to see quite plainly the negative
curvatureIn mathematics, curvature refers to any of a number of loosely related concepts in different areas of geometry. Intuitively, curvature is the amount by which a geometric object deviates from being flat, or straight in the case of a line, but this is defined in different ways depending on the context...
of the hyperbolic plane, through its effect on the sum of angles in triangles and squares.
For example, in
Circle Limit III every vertex belongs to three triangles and three squares. In the Euclidean plane, their angles would sum to 450°; i.e., a circle and a quarter. From this we see that the sum of angles of a triangle in the hyperbolic plane must be smaller than 180°. Another visible property is
exponential growthExponential growth occurs when the growth rate of a mathematical function is proportional to the function's current value...
. In
Circle Limit III, for example, one can see that the number of fishes within a distance of
n from the center rises exponentially. The fishes have equal hyperbolic area, so the area of a ball of radius
n must rise exponentially in
n.
There are several ways to physically realize a hyperbolic plane (or approximation thereof). A particularly wellknown paper model based on the
pseudosphereIn geometry, the term pseudosphere is used to describe various surfaces with constant negative gaussian curvature. Depending on context, it can refer to either a theoretical surface of constant negative curvature, to a tractricoid, or to a hyperboloid....
is due to
William ThurstonWilliam Paul Thurston is an American mathematician. He is a pioneer in the field of lowdimensional topology. In 1982, he was awarded the Fields Medal for his contributions to the study of 3manifolds...
. The art of
crochetCrochet is a process of creating fabric from yarn, thread, or other material strands using a crochet hook. The word is derived from the French word "crochet", meaning hook. Hooks can be made of materials such as metals, woods or plastic and are commercially manufactured as well as produced by...
has been used to demonstrate hyperbolic planes with the first being made by
Daina TaiminaDaina Taimina is a Latvian mathematician, currently Adjunct Associate Professor at Cornell University, known for crocheting objects to illustrate hyperbolic space. She received all her formal education in Riga, Latvia, where in 1977 she graduated summa cum laude from the University of Latvia and...
, whose book
Crocheting Adventures with Hyperbolic Planes won the 2009
Bookseller/Diagram Prize for Oddest Title of the YearThe Bookseller/Diagram Prize for Oddest Title of the Year, originally known as the Diagram Group Prize for the Oddest Title at the Frankfurt Book Fair, commonly known as the Diagram Prize for short, is a humorous literary award that is given annually to the book with the oddest title...
. In 2000, Keith Henderson demonstrated a quicktomake paper model dubbed the "hyperbolic soccerball".
Instructions on how to make a hyperbolic quilt, designed by
Helaman FergusonHelaman Rolfe Pratt Ferguson is an American sculptor and a digital artist, specifically an algorist.Ferguson's mother died when he was about three and his father went off to serve in the Second World War. He was adopted and raised in New York. He was a graduate of Hamilton College and received a...
, has been made available by
Jeff WeeksJeffrey Renwick Weeks is an American mathematician, a geometric topologist and cosmologist.Biography:Weeks received his B.A. from Dartmouth College in 1978, and his Ph.D. in mathematics from Princeton University in 1985, under the supervision of William Thurston...
.
Homogeneous structure
Hyperbolic spaceIn mathematics, hyperbolic space is a type of nonEuclidean geometry. Whereas spherical geometry has a constant positive curvature, hyperbolic geometry has a negative curvature: every point in hyperbolic space is a saddle point...
of dimension n is a special case of a Riemannian
symmetric spaceA symmetric space is, in differential geometry and representation theory, a smooth manifold whose group of symmetries contains an "inversion symmetry" about every point...
of noncompact type, as it is isomorphic to the quotient


The
orthogonal groupIn mathematics, the orthogonal group of degree n over a field F is the group of n × n orthogonal matrices with entries from F, with the group operation of matrix multiplication...
O(1,n) acts by normpreserving transformations on
Minkowski spaceIn physics and mathematics, Minkowski space or Minkowski spacetime is the mathematical setting in which Einstein's theory of special relativity is most conveniently formulated...
R^{1,n}, and it acts transitively on the twosheet hyperboloid of norm 1 vectors. Timelike lines (i.e., those with positivenorm tangents) through the origin pass through antipodal points in the hyperboloid, so the space of such lines yields a model of hyperbolic nspace. The stabilizer of any particular line is isomorphic to the product of the orthogonal groups O(n) and O(1), where O(n) acts on the tangent space of a point in the hyperboloid, and O(1) reflects the line through the origin. Many of the elementary concepts in hyperbolic geometry can be described in linear algebraic terms: geodesic paths are described by intersections with planes through the origin, dihedral angles between hyperplanes can be described by inner products of normal vectors, and hyperbolic reflection groups can be given explicit matrix realizations.
In small dimensions, there are exceptional isomorphisms of Lie groups that yield additional ways to consider symmetries of hyperbolic spaces. For example, in dimension 2, the isomorphisms SO
^{+}(1,2) ≅ PSL(2,
R) ≅ PSU(1,1) allow one to interpret the upper half plane model as the quotient SL(2,
R)/SO(2) and the Poincaré disc model as the quotient SU(1,1)/U(1). In both cases, the symmetry groups act by fractional linear transformations, since both groups are the orientationpreserving stabilizers in PGL(2,
C) of the respective subspaces of the Riemann sphere. The Cayley transformation not only takes one model of the hyperbolic plane to the other, but realizes the isomorphism of symmetry groups as conjugation in a larger group. In dimension 3, the fractional linear action of PGL(2,
C) on the Riemann sphere is identified with the action on the conformal boundary of hyperbolic 3space induced by the isomorphism O
^{+}(1,3) ≅ PGL(2,
C). This allows one to study isometries of hyperbolic 3space by considering spectral properties of representative complex matrices. For example, parabolic transformations are conjugate to rigid translations in the upper halfspace model, and they are exactly those transformations that can be represented by unipotent upper triangular matrices.
See also
 Hyperbolic space
In mathematics, hyperbolic space is a type of nonEuclidean geometry. Whereas spherical geometry has a constant positive curvature, hyperbolic geometry has a negative curvature: every point in hyperbolic space is a saddle point...
 Elliptic geometry
Elliptic geometry is a nonEuclidean geometry, in which, given a line L and a point p outside L, there exists no line parallel to L passing through p. Elliptic geometry, like hyperbolic geometry, violates Euclid's parallel postulate, which can be interpreted as asserting that there is exactly one...
 Gyrovector space
A gyrovector space is a mathematical concept for studying hyperbolic geometry in analogy to the way vector spaces are used in Euclidean geometry. This vectorbased approach has been developed by Abraham Albert Ungar from the late 1980s onwards...
 Hjelmslev transformation
In mathematics, the Hjelmslev transformation is an effective method for mapping an entire hyperbolic plane into a circle with a finite radius. The transformation was invented by Danish mathematician Johannes Hjelmslev...
 Horocycle
In hyperbolic geometry, a horocycle is a curve whose normals all converge asymptotically. It is the twodimensional example of a horosphere ....
 Hyperbolic 3manifold
A hyperbolic 3manifold is a 3manifold equipped with a complete Riemannian metric of constant sectional curvature 1. In other words, it is the quotient of threedimensional hyperbolic space by a subgroup of hyperbolic isometries acting freely and properly discontinuously...
 Hyperbolic manifold
In mathematics, a hyperbolic nmanifold is a complete Riemannian nmanifold of constant sectional curvature 1.Every complete, connected, simplyconnected manifold of constant negative curvature −1 is isometric to the real hyperbolic space Hn. As a result, the universal cover of any closed manifold...
 Hyperbolic structure
 Hyperbolic tree
 Hyperboloid structure
Hyperboloid structures are architectural structures designed with hyperboloid geometry. Often these are tall structures such as towers where the hyperboloid geometry's structural strength is used to support an object high off the ground, but hyperboloid geometry is also often used for decorative...
 Kleinian group
In mathematics, a Kleinian group is a discrete subgroup of PSL. The group PSL of 2 by 2 complex matrices of determinant 1 modulo its center has several natural representations: as conformal transformations of the Riemann sphere, and as orientationpreserving isometries of 3dimensional hyperbolic...
 Poincaré metric
In mathematics, the Poincaré metric, named after Henri Poincaré, is the metric tensor describing a twodimensional surface of constant negative curvature. It is the natural metric commonly used in a variety of calculations in hyperbolic geometry or Riemann surfaces.There are three equivalent...
 Pseudosphere
In geometry, the term pseudosphere is used to describe various surfaces with constant negative gaussian curvature. Depending on context, it can refer to either a theoretical surface of constant negative curvature, to a tractricoid, or to a hyperboloid....
 Saccheri quadrilateral
A Saccheri quadrilateral is a quadrilateral with two equal sides perpendicular to the base. It is named after Giovanni Gerolamo Saccheri, who used it extensively in his book Euclid vindicatus , an attempt to prove the parallel postulate using the method Reductio ad absurdum...
 Spherical geometry
Spherical geometry is the geometry of the twodimensional surface of a sphere. It is an example of a geometry which is not Euclidean. Two practical applications of the principles of spherical geometry are to navigation and astronomy....
 Systolic geometry
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