In mathematics, a Spin(7)-manifold is an eight-dimensional Riemannian manifold with the exceptional holonomy group Spin(7). Spin(7)-manifolds are Ricci-flat and admit a parallel spinor. They also admit a parallel 4-form, known as the Cayley form, which is a calibrating form for a special class of submanifolds called Cayley cycles.
The fact that Spin(7) might possibly arise as the holonomy group of certain Riemannian 8-manifolds was first suggested by the 1955 classification theorem of Marcel Berger, and this possibility remained consistent with the simplified proof of Berger's theorem given by Jim Simons in 1962. Although not a single example of such a manifold had yet been discovered, Edmond Bonan then showed in 1966 that, if such a manifold did in fact exist, it would carry a parallel 4-form, and that it would necessarily be Ricci-flat. The first local examples of 8-manifolds with holonomy Spin(7) were finally constructed around 1984 by Robert Bryant, and his full proof of their existence appeared in Annals of Mathematics in 1987. Next, complete (but still noncompact) 8-manifolds with holonomy Spin(7) were explicitly constructed by Bryant and Salamon in 1989. The first examples of compact Spin(7)-manifolds were then constructed by Dominic Joyce in 1996.
- E. Bonan, (1966), "Sur les variétés riemanniennes à groupe d'holonomie G2 ou Spin(7)", C. R. Acad. Sci. Paris, 262: 127–129.
- Bryant, R.L.; Salamon, S.M. (1989), "On the construction of some complete metrics with exceptional holonomy", Duke Mathematical Journal, 58: 829–850, doi:10.1215/s0012-7094-89-05839-0.
- Dominic Joyce (2000). Compact Manifolds with Special Holonomy. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-850601-5.
- Karigiannis, Spiro, "Flows of G2 and Spin(7) structures" (PDF), Mathematical Institute, University of Oxford.
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