A nonintegrable sub-Riemannian geodesic flow on a Carnot group
Journal article, 1997
Graded nilpotent Lie groups, or Carnot groups, are to sub-Riemannian geometry as Euclidean spaces are to Riemannian geometry. They are the metric tangent cones for this geometry. Hoping that the analogy between sub-Riemannian and Riemannian geometry is a strong one, one might conjecture that the sub-Riemannian geodesic flow on any Carnot group is completely integrable. We prove this conjecture to be false by showing that the sub-Riemannian geodesic flow is not algebraically completely integrable in the case of the group whose Lie algebra consists of 4 by 4 upper triangular matrices. As a corollary, we prove that the centralizer for the corresponding quadratic "quantum" Hamiltonian in the universal enveloping algebra of this Lie algebra is "as small as possible."
Universal enveloping algebra