On the number of invariant straight lines for polynomial differential systems

Joan C. Artés, Branko Grünbaum, Jaume Llibre

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

If P and Q are two real polynomials in the real variables cursive Greek chi and y such that the degree of P2 + Q2 is 2n, then we say that the polynomial differential system cursive Greek chi′ = P(cursive Greek chi, y), y′ = Q(cursive Greek chi, y) has degree n. Let α(n) be the maximum number of invariant straight lines possible in a polynomial differential systems of degree n > 1 having finitely many invariant straight lines. In the 1980's the following conjecture circulated among mathematicians working in polynomial differential systems. Conjecture: α(n) is 2n + 1 if n is even, and α(n) is 2n + 2 if n is odd. The conjecture was established for n = 2,3,4. In this paper we prove that, in general, the conjecture is not true for n > 4. Specifically, we prove that α(5) = 14. Moreover, we present counterexamples to the conjecture for n ∈ {6,7,... ,20}. We also show that 2n + 1 ≤ α(n) ≤ 3n - 1 if n is even, and that In + 2 ≤ α(n) ≤ 3n - 1 if n is odd.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-230
JournalPacific Journal of Mathematics
Volume184
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1998

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