Smooth Points on Semi-algebraic Sets



Many algorithms for determining properties of real algebraic or semi-algebraic sets rely upon the ability to compute smooth points. Existing methods to compute smooth points on semi-algebraic sets use symbolic quantifier elimination tools. In this paper, we present a simple algorithm based on computing the critical points of some well-chosen function that guarantees the computation of smooth points in each connected compact component of a real (semi)-algebraic set. Our technique is intuitive in principal, performs well on previously difficult examples, and is straightforward to implement using existing numerical algebraic geometry software. It complements other approaches that compute sample points on real semi-algebraic sets, such as computing critical points of the distance function, but our method also guarantees the smoothness of the sample points. The practical efficiency of our approach is demonstrated by solving a conjecture on the number of equilibria of the Kuramoto model for the n=4 case. We also apply our method to design an efficient algorithm to compute the real dimension of (semi)-algebraic sets, the original motivation for this research.


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  • Jonathan Hauenstein

  • Katherine Harris

  • Agnes Szanto

  • Jonathan Hauenstein

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  • All rights reserved

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