Abstract view
The homology of singular polygon spaces


Published:19980601
Printed: Jun 1998
Abstract
Let $M_n$ be the variety of spatial polygons $P= (a_1, a_2, \dots,
a_n)$ whose sides are vectors $a_i \in \text{\bf R}^3$ of length
$\vert a_i \vert=1 \; (1 \leq i \leq n),$ up to motion in
$\text{\bf R}^3.$ It is known that for odd $n$, $M_n$ is a
smooth manifold, while for even $n$, $M_n$ has conelike singular
points. For odd $n$, the rational homology of $M_n$ was determined
by Kirwan and Klyachko [6], [9]. The purpose of this paper is to
determine the rational homology of $M_n$ for even $n$. For even
$n$, let ${\tilde M}_n$ be the manifold obtained from $M_n$ by the
resolution of the singularities. Then we also determine the
integral homology of ${\tilde M}_n$.