conformal mapping

A mapping f:mn which preserves the magnitude and orientation of the angles between any two curves which intersect in a given point z0 is said to be conformal at z0. A mapping that is conformal at any point in a domain D is said to be conformal in D.

An important special case is when m=n=2. In this case, we may identify 2 with and speak of conformal mappingsMathworldPlanetmathPlanetmath of the complex planeMathworldPlanetmath. It can be shown that a mapping f: is conformal if and only if f is a complex analytic function.  The complex conjugateMathworldPlanetmath f¯ of a conformal mapping f is inversely conformal, i.e. it preserves the magnitude but reverses the orientation of angles.

If m=n, then we can study invertible conformal mappings. It is clear from the definition that the composition of two such maps and the inverse of any such map is again an invertible conformal mapping, so the set of such mappings forms a group. In the case m=n>2, the group of conformal mappings is finite dimensional and is generated by rotations, translationsPlanetmathPlanetmath, and spherical inversionsMathworldPlanetmath.

This notion of conformal mappings can be generalized to any setting in which it makes sense to speak of angles between curves or angles between tangent vectorsMathworldPlanetmath. In particular, one can consider conformal mappings of Riemannian manifolds. It can be shown that, if (M,g) and (N,h) are Riemannian manifolds, then a map f:MN is conformal if and only if f*h=sg for some scalar field s (on M).

Title conformal mapping
Canonical name ConformalMapping
Date of creation 2013-03-22 13:35:42
Last modified on 2013-03-22 13:35:42
Owner rspuzio (6075)
Last modified by rspuzio (6075)
Numerical id 19
Author rspuzio (6075)
Entry type Definition
Classification msc 30E20
Classification msc 53A30
Related topic QuasiconformalMapping
Related topic ConformalMappingTheorem
Related topic AngleBetweenTwoLines
Related topic SchwarzChristoffelTransformation
Related topic CategoryOfRiemannianManifolds
Defines conformal
Defines inversely conformal