Existence and rigidity of pseudo-Anosov flows transverse to R-covered foliations

Existence and rigidity of pseudo-Anosov flows transverse to R-covered foliations

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Sergio Fenley, Florida State University and Princeton University
Fine Hall 401

Pseudo-Anosov flows are extremely common in three manifolds and they are very useful. How many pseudo-Anosov flows are there in a manifold up to topological conjugacy? We analyse this question in the context of flows transverse to a given foliation F. We prove that if F is R-covered (leaf space in the universal cover is the real numbers) then there are at most two pseudo-Anosov flows transverse to F. In addition if there are two, then the manifold is hyperbolic and the the foliation F blows down to a foliation topologically conjugate to the stable foliation of a particular type of an Anosov flow. The results use the topological theory of pseudo-Anosov flows, the universal circle for foliations and the geometric theory of R-covered foliations. We also discuss the existence of transverse pseudo-Anosov flows in this setting.