June 4, 2018
TITLE: Some applications of Ricci flow in physics
ABSTRACT: I will review two areas where Ricci flow makes contact with physics. Firstly I will review how Ricci flow arises from the renormalisation group equations of 2d `sigma models’ (I will try to explain what these words mean!). Secondly I will review a more recent link, where Ricci flow may be thought of as an algorithm to numerically find solutions to Einstein’s gravitational equations in exotic settings. In physics in both cases it is interesting to consider how black holes evolve under Ricci flow. Static black holes may be thought of as Riemannian geometries, while stationary black holes cannot, but still may be evolved using a ‘Lorentzian’ signature Ricci flow. I will also discuss the existence of Ricci solitons which are important to understand in the second context.