Vector bundles on algebraic curves

Vector Bundles On Algebraic Curves

Vector bundles on algebraic curves

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In mathematics, vector bundles on algebraic curves may be studied as holomorphic vector bundles on compact Riemann surfaces. which is the classical approach, or as locally free sheaves on algebraic curves C in a more general, algebraic setting (which can for example admit singular points).

Some foundational results on classification were known in the 1950s. The result of Alexander Grothendieck, that holomorphic vector bundles on the Riemann sphere are sums of line bundles, is now often called the Birkhoff–Grothendieck theorem, since it is implicit in much earlier work of G. D. Birkhoff on the Riemann–Hilbert problem.

Michael Atiyah gave the classification of vector bundles on elliptic curves.

The Riemann–Roch theorem for vector bundles was proved in 1938 by André Weil, before the 'vector bundle' concept had really any official status. In fact, though, associated ruled surfaces were classical objects. See Hirzebruch–Riemann–Roch theorem for his result. He was in fact seeking a generalization of the Jacobian variety, by passing from holomorphic line bundles to higher rank. This idea would prove fruitful, in terms of moduli spaces of vector bundles. following on the work in the 1960s on geometric invariant theory.


  • A. Grothendieck, Sur la classification des fibrés holomorphes sur la sphère de Riemann, Amer. J. Math., 79 (1957), 121–138
  • M. Atiyah, Vector bundles over an elliptic curve, Proc. London Math. Soc. VII (1957), 414–52, in Collected Works......
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