# Differential Geometry Proof (Need a Hand)

1. Homework Statement

Let alpha(t) be a regular curve. Suppose there is a point a in R^3 space s.t. alpha(t)-a is orthogonal to T(t) for all t. Prove that alpha(t) lies on a sphere.

2. Homework Equations
Definations:
A regular curve in R^3 is a function alpha: (a,b)-->R^3 which is of class C^k for some k (greater than or equal to) 1 and for which the time derviative does not equal zero for all t in (a,b) Note: For this book all classes will be C^3, unless stated. (it is not stated otherwise in this problem so assume C^3).

T(t)= Tangent vector field to a regular curve as defined by (d(alpha)/dt)/norm(d(alpha)/dt)).

Hints: what should be the center of the sphere?
3. The Attempt at a Solution

And here is where I get stuck, I have not been given a crietria for a curve to lie on a sphere (and if I had oh so many years ago I have long since forgotten it). All of my attempts so far have fallen apart due to assumptions I have had to make, which without a guide towards showing something lies on a curve, I am not sure are justified.

Just a hint, aside from the one given, is all I need to get some of my juices following. I know it isn't proper form to not show my solution; however, it won't be of use as I don't really know where I am heading with it.

Any help would be great.

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quasar987
Homework Helper
Gold Member
First find the answer to the hint given (what should be the center of the sphere?) and my hint is "if $\vec{\alpha}(t)=(\alpha^1,\alpha^3,\alpha^3)$ lies on the sphere then what is the relation btw the coordinates $\alpha^i$?"

AKG
Homework Helper
To prove $\alpha$ lies on a sphere, find a point C such that $|\alpha (t) - C|$ is a constant. 1) Do you see why this proves that $\alpha$ lies on a sphere? 2) Can you see, with the right guess for C, how to prove that $|\alpha (t) - C|$ is a constant?

robphy