TACT: Topological Algebra, Functional Analysis and Category Theory

The Research Group TACT

Welcome to the home page of the research group TACT of the Department of Mathematics of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Belgium.

About TACT

The research team investigates mathematical structures that are important in several basic areas of mathematics like geometry, representation theory, functional analysis, differential calculus or theory of approximation. The motivation also comes from outside mathematics, from computer science or physics where some of the mathematical structures that are studied are called upon as models. By application of methods from category theory the relation between these mathematical structures is studied. The compatibility of their fundamental constructions is investigated and a general study of their representability, as well as of their function space theory is undertaken.

More specifically the theory of frames or locales uses order-theoretic notions to gain more insight in topological structures and to shed light on the use of choice principles in topology (or sometimes simply avoid them altogether).

The theory of approach spaces provides the tools for obtaining quantified results in topology and in functional analysis, extending the isometric theory of Banach spaces.

The team contributes to the development of the theory of semi-abelian categories and tensor categories.
Semi-abelian categories allow a unified setting for many important homological properties of non-abelian categories. Categories of quantum groups, of rings, of Lie-algebras and of crossed modules are typical non-abelian categories, often with a tensor structure.
Abstract tensor categories lead to interesting non-commutative spaces (operator algebras) whose analytical properties are studied in connection with the properties of the associated category. The main emphasis is on representation categories of quantum deformations of semi-simple Lie groups.

Research Tracks:
•Theory of approach spaces: E. Colebunders, M. Sioen 
•Categorical topology: E. Colebunders, M. Sioen
•Pointfree topology: M. Sioen 
•Abstract tensor categories: K. De Commer
•Quantum groups: K. De Commer
•Operator algebras: K. De Commer