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Twist positivity, Lorenz knots, and concordance

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Siddhi Krishna (Columbia)

Abstract: There are lots of ways to measure the complexity of a knot. Some come from knot diagrams, and others come from topological or geometric quantities extracted from some auxiliary space. In this talk, I’ll describe a geometry property, which we call “twist positivity”, that often puts strong restrictions on how the braid and bridge index are related. I’ll describe some old and new results about twist positivity, as well as some new applications towards knot concordance. In particular, I’ll describe how using a suite of numerical knot invariants (including the braid index) in tandem allows one to prove that there are infinitely many positive braid knots which all represent distinct smooth concordance classes. This confirms a prediction of the slice-ribbon conjecture. Everything I’ll discuss is joint work with Hugh Morton. I will assume very little background about knot invariants for this talk – all are welcome!