On curvatures and focal points of dynamical Lagrangian distributions and their reductions by first integrals
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Pairs (Hamiltonian system, Lagrangian distribution) called dynamical Lagrangian distributions, appear naturally in differential geometry, calculus of variations, and rational mechanics. The basic differential invariants of a dynamical Lagrangian distribution with respect to the action of the group of symplectomorphisms of the ambient symplectic manifold are the curvature operator and curvature form. These invariants can be considered as generalizations of the classical curvature tensor in Riemannian geometry. In particular, in terms of these invariants one can localize the focal points along extremals of the corresponding variational problems. In the present paper we study the behavior of the curvature operator, the curvature form, and the focal points of a dynamical Lagrangian distribution after its reduction by arbitrary first integrals in involution. An interesting phenomenon is that the curvature form of so-called monotone increasing Lagrangian dynamical distributions, which appear naturally in mechanical systems, does not decrease after reduction. It also turns out that the set of focal points to the given point with respect to the monotone increasing dynamical Lagrangian distribution and the corresponding set of focal points with respect to its reduction by one integral are alternating sets on the corresponding integral curve of the Hamiltonian system of the considered dynamical distributions. Moreover, the first focal point corresponding to the reduced Lagrangian distribution comes before any focal point related to the original dynamical distribution. We illustrate our results on the classical N-body problem. Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2005.