Cobordism obstructions to independent vector fields
Abstract
We define an invariant for the existence of r pointwise linearly independent sections in the tangent bundle of a closed manifold. For low values of r, explicit computations of the homotopy groups of certain Thom spectra combined with classical obstruction theory identifies this invariant as the top obstruction to the existence of the desired sections. In particular, this shows that the top obstruction is an invariant of the underlying manifold in these cases, which is not true in general. The invariant is related to cobordism theory and this gives rise to an identification of the invariant in terms of wellknown invariants. As a corollary to the computations, we can also compute lowdimensional homotopy groups of the Thom spectra studied by Galatius, Tillmann, Madsen, and Weiss.
 Publication:

arXiv eprints
 Pub Date:
 August 2012
 DOI:
 10.48550/arXiv.1208.3542
 arXiv:
 arXiv:1208.3542
 Bibcode:
 2012arXiv1208.3542B
 Keywords:

 Mathematics  Algebraic Topology;
 57R25 (Primary) 55S35;
 55P42 (Secondary)
 EPrint:
 46 pages