Quintic threefold

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In mathematics, a quintic threefold is a degree 5 3-dimensional hypersurface in 4-dimensional projective space. Non-singular quintic threefolds are Calabi–Yau manifolds.

The Hodge diamond of a non-singular quintic 3-fold is


Mathematician Robbert Dijkgraaf said "One number which every algebraic geometer knows is the number 2,875 because obviously, that is the number of lines on a quintic."[1]

Rational curves[edit]

Clemens (1984) conjectured that the number of rational curves of a given degree on a generic quintic threefold is finite. (Some smooth but non-generic quintic threefolds have infinite families of lines on them.) This was verified for degrees up to 7 by Katz (1986) who also calculated the number 609250 of degree 2 rational curves. Philip Candelas, Xenia C. de la Ossa, and Paul S. Green et al. (1991) conjectured a general formula for the virtual number of rational curves of any degree, which was proved by Givental (1996) (the fact that the virtual number equals the actual number relies on confirmation of Clemens' conjecture, currently known for degree at most 11 Cotterill (2012)). The number of rational curves of various degrees on a generic quintic threefold is given by

2875, 609250, 317206375, 242467530000, ...(sequence A076912 in the OEIS).

Since the generic quintic threefold is a Calabi–Yau threefold and the moduli space of rational curves of a given degree is a discrete, finite set (hence compact), these have well-defined Donaldson–Thomas invariants (the "virtual number of points"); at least for degree 1 and 2, these agree with the actual number of points.



  1. ^ Robbert Dijkgraaf (29 March 2015). "The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Quantum Physics in Modern Mathematics". youtube.com. Trev M. Retrieved 10 September 2015. see 29 minutes 57 seconds