The subject of operator algebras is primarily C*-algebras and von Neumann algebras, and associated topics. It also includes more general algebras of operators on Hilbert space, and may include algebras of operators on other topological vector spaces. It is related to but distinct from the subjects ...

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

27
votes
5answers
1k views

Are commutative C*-algebras really dual to locally compact Hausdorff spaces?

Several online sources (e.g. Wikipedia, the nLab) assert that the Gelfand representation defines a contravariant equivalence from the category of (non-unital) commutative $C^{\ast}$-algebras to the ...
20
votes
1answer
724 views

Why study operator spaces?

I'm currently enrolled in an operator spaces course and I'm finding it difficult to understand why we study them in the first place. Functional analysis is motivated well enough for me and even though ...
19
votes
8answers
2k views

Reference for spectral sequences

What are good expositions of spectral sequences, which include a thorough introduction to the topic as well as the most important examples of applications - maybe with an emphasis an topological ...
18
votes
1answer
775 views

Motivation for abstract harmonic analysis

I am reading Folland's A Course in Abstract Harmonic Analysis and find this book extremely exciting. However it seems Folland does not give many examples to illustrate the motivation behind much of ...
14
votes
1answer
359 views

How does $\sigma(T)$ change with respect to $T$?

Consider $\sigma$ as a mapping which maps $T\in\mathcal{L}(X)$ to $\sigma(T)$, the spectrum of $T$, a compact set in the complex plane. I wonder whether there is some result concerning how ...
12
votes
2answers
827 views

$C^*$-algebra which is also a Hilbert space?

Does there exist a nontrivial (i.e. other than $\mathbb{C}$) example of a $C^*$-algebra which is also a Hilbert space (in the same norm, of course)? For $\mathbb{C}^n$ with $n > 1$ the answer is ...
12
votes
2answers
957 views

Is there an algebraic homomorphism between two Banach algebras which is not continuous?

According to wikipedia, you need the Axiom of Choice to find a discontinuous map between two Banach spaces. Does this procedure also apply for Banach algebras yielding a discontinuous multiplicative ...
12
votes
2answers
450 views

When two projections in a C*-algebra are “almost” Murray-von Neumann equivalent, they are equivalent

Let $A$ be a C*-algebra and $p,q \in A$ be projections. Assume there is an element $a\in A$ such that $\|aa^*-p\|<\frac{1}{4}$ and $\|a^*a-q\|<\frac{1}{4}$. Then there is a partial isometry $v$ ...
12
votes
1answer
299 views

Is this a characterization of commutative $C^{*}$-algebras

Assume that $A$ is a $C^{*}$-algebra such that $\forall a,b \in A, ab=0 \iff ba=0$. Is $A$ necessarily a commutative algebra? In particular does "$\forall a,b \in A, ab=0 \iff ba=0$" ...
11
votes
1answer
477 views

Renorming $\mathcal{B}(\mathcal{H})$?

Consider the Banach space of all bounded operators $\mathcal{B}(\mathcal{H})$ on a (separable if you wish) Hilbert space $\mathcal{H}$ with the operator norm. Can we renorm this space to a strictly ...
10
votes
1answer
951 views

Why is every positive linear map between $C^*$-algebras bounded?

We know that every positive linear functional on a $C^*$-algebra is bounded. How can we prove every positive linear map between $C^*$-algebras is bounded?
10
votes
3answers
258 views

If there is already enough room to add all projections, does passing to matrices change anything?

Throughout, $A$ denotes a $*$-algebra. We always assume $A$ is representable in the sense that $A$ can be embedded into $B(H)$ for some Hilbert space $H$. The particular embedding is not important, ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

Applications of Banach Algebras and Operator Algebras

I am trying to learn operator algebra theory (I am tempted to start with Douglas' "Banach Algebra Techniques in Operator Theory"). One aspect that I am curious about is whether there are significant ...
10
votes
1answer
245 views

Maximal ideal space of $c_{\mathcal{U}}$

Let $\mathcal{U}$ be an filter over $\mathbb{N}$. Define $$c_{\mathcal{U}} = \{{(x_n)\in \ell_\infty\colon \lim_{\mathcal{U}, n}x_n =0\}},$$ which is a C*-algebra. Is there an accessible topological ...
9
votes
1answer
648 views

Ideals in $C(X)$

Let $X$ be a Hausdorf Compact topological space. Please help me to show, for the purpose of understanding an example in some of my lecture notes, that the closed ideals in $C(X)$ are of the following ...
9
votes
1answer
755 views

What is the use of Spectral Theorem?

Obviously the version for compact and self-adjoint linear operators on Hilbert Spaces is very useful since it decomposes the operators into orthogonal projections. However, the following more general ...
9
votes
1answer
451 views

Maximal ideals and maximal subspaces of normed algebras

This is a kind of "prove or give a counter-example" question, and I'm having some difficults with it: By a maximal ideal $I$ of an algebra $A$, we mean an ideal $I\neq A$ which is not properly ...
9
votes
1answer
107 views

Epimorphisms of locally compact spaces

Let $LCH$ be the category of locally compact Hausdorff spaces with proper continuous maps. Question. What are the epimorphisms in $LCH$? I suspect them to be surjective, but I haven't been able to ...
9
votes
1answer
189 views

Do we have Maximal Abelian Algebras (MAAs)?

Let $\mathcal{H}$ be a Hilbert space and $B(\mathcal{H})$ the algebra of bounded linear operators on $\mathcal{H}$. A MASA $\mathcal{M}$ is a subalgebra of $B(\mathcal{H})$ that is abelian and ...
9
votes
0answers
151 views

K-theory for non-separable C*-algebras

Let $\kappa$ be an uncountable cardinal. What is the K-theory for the C*-algebras $\mathcal{K}(\ell_2(\kappa))$ and $\mathcal{B}(\ell_2(\kappa))$, of, respectively, compact and bounded operators on ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Is a von Neumann algebra just a C*-algebra which is generated by its projections?

von Neumann algebras have the nice property that they are generated by their projections (the elements satisfying $e = e^{\ast} = e^2$) in the sense that they are the norm closure of the subspace ...
8
votes
2answers
279 views

Why can we classify the W*algebra?

Many operator algebra books discuss the classifiation of W*algebra(von Neumann algebra),but not the C*algebra,why? I think a direct reason is that we have the projection comparison theorem in the ...
8
votes
1answer
206 views

Ideals in $B(H)$ are self-adjoint

It is known that every (closed two-sided) ideal in a $C^{*}$-algebra is self-adjoint. The proofs that I've seen involve functional calculus and approximate units. I am wondering whether there is a ...
8
votes
1answer
610 views

reference for operator algebra

I am taking a course on operator algebra this semester. My instructor has suggested a reference "Kadinson and Ringrose." Are there any other good/standard references for this subject that I can look ...
8
votes
2answers
271 views

There are 3 points in the spectrum of some self-adjoint element of a non-unital C*-algebra.

Let $A$ be a non-unital C*-algebra. I would like to know a simple way to show that $A$ contains a self-adjoint element whose spectrum has at least $3$ elements. Note that the spectrum of an ...
8
votes
1answer
839 views

Some examples in C* algebras and Banach * algebras

I would like an example of the following things. A Banach * algebra that is not a C* algebra for which there exists a positive linear functional (it takes $x^*x$ to numbers $ \geq 0$) that is not ...
8
votes
2answers
126 views

What, and how can, topological invariants can be computed from a space's algebra of functions?

The Gelfrand duality says that the category of locally compact Hausdorff spaces (with proper continuous functions) is equivalent to the category of commutative $C^*$ algebras (with proper ...
8
votes
2answers
235 views

Traces on separable simple $C^{\ast}$- algebras

What is an example of a separable, simple $C^{\ast}$-algebra that admits two different tracial states? EDIT: Julien has pointed to a number of avenues to answer this question. If anyone has an ...
8
votes
1answer
63 views

simple connectedness and abelian C* algebras

From Gelfand-Neumark Theorem, we know that topological properties of a compact Hausdorff space $X$ are encoded in the abelian $C^*$-algebra of continuous complex-valued functions on $X$ (with $||f||= ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Gelfand Topology and C*-algebras

Before we start here some notations to have no confusion: Suppose $A$ is a commutative $C^*$-algebra with unit. $\Sigma(A)$ is the Gelfand spectrum, given by all linear maps ...
7
votes
2answers
145 views

Recovering a group from its C*-algebras and group algebra

Let $G$ and $H$ be locally compact groups. Does anyone know the answers to these questions? Is it true that: if $C^*(G)$ and $C^*(H)$ are $*$-isomorphic, then $G\cong H$? if $C_r^*(G)$ and ...
7
votes
2answers
279 views

Why are compact operators 'small'?

I have been hearing different people saying this in different contexts for quite some time but I still don't quite get it. I know that compact operators map bounded sets to totally bounded ones, that ...
7
votes
2answers
690 views

A question about pure state

For every unit vector $x$ in a Hilbert space $H$,let $F_x$ be the linear functional on $\mathcal B(H)$ (bounded linear operators) defined by $F_x(T)=(Tx,x)$. Prove that each $F_x$ is pure state and ...
7
votes
1answer
133 views

“Refinement” of the existence of faithful representations of C*-algebras?

Conway, in a course in operator theory, brings the statement 1. below as a theorem and statement 2. below as an exercise. Still, he states that 2. refines 1., but I can't see it. Every C*-algebra ...
7
votes
1answer
75 views

The ideal generated by a non-compact operator

I wanted to find a quick proof of the following well-known fact. Since I couldn't easily find a reference, I provide a proof below. Let $H$ be a separable Hilbert space, and $J\subset B(H)$ be a ...
7
votes
1answer
310 views

In how far are CCR and GCR C*-algebras interesting?

I have some basic familiarity with C*-algebras (from the mathematical physics side - Bratteli-Robinson), and while having a look at Arveson's "Invitation to C* algebras", I came across so-called CCR ...
7
votes
2answers
323 views

Gelfand Naimark Theorem

The commutative Gelfand-Naimark theorem tells us that every unital commutative C* algebra is isometrically isomorphic to the space of continuous functions on its maximal ideal space. The non- ...
7
votes
1answer
952 views

Property of partial traces

Consider the Kronecker product of $A \in M_m, B \in M_n$: $A \otimes B = \left( \begin{matrix} a_{11}B&...&a_{1m}B\\ \vdots&\ddots\\a_{m1}B&...&a_{mm}B \end{matrix} \right)$ $A ...
7
votes
1answer
208 views

When is a $*$-homomorphism between multiplier algebras strictly continuous?

The strict topology on the multiplier algebra $M(A)$ of a C*-algebra $A$ is that generated by the seminorms $$ x\mapsto \| ax \|\qquad x\mapsto\| xa \| \qquad (x\in M(A), a\in A) $$ Whereas a ...
7
votes
1answer
461 views

Abstract Von Neumann Algebras

I have just read this question Is a von Neumann algebra just a C*-algebra which is generated by its projections? and am wondering about Robert Israel's answer when he says that a subalgebra of $C(X)$ ...
7
votes
0answers
272 views

Combinatorial total space for finitely generated torsion-free groups?

Motivation: I'm an operator algebraist and I'm looking for an answer to the main question in order to build non-trivial spectral triples for a class (as large as possible) of discrete groups. $\to$ ...
6
votes
3answers
87 views

Can $AB-BA=I$ hold if both $A$ and $B$ are operators on an infinitely-dimensional vector space over $\mathbb C$?

Of course, it can't hold if operators are over finite-dimensional spaces, as is evident from trace considerations. Can it be true for infinite-dimensional spaces? I think not, but I don't see how we ...
6
votes
2answers
479 views

Non-$C^{*}$ Banach algebras?

It suddenly occurred to me almost every Banach algebra I know is actually a $C^{*}$ algebra. Several kinds of function algebras are definitely $C^{*}$ algebras. So is the matrix algebra. Although one ...
6
votes
1answer
348 views

equivalent? algebraic definition of a partial isometry in a C*-algebra

An element $a\in\mathfrak{A}$ (unital C*-algebra) is a partial isometry if $a^*\cdot a $ is projection. Can one recover the equivalent caracterizations of a partial isometry in ...
6
votes
1answer
318 views

Cube root in $ C^{*}$-algebra.

Let $A$ be a $C^*\text{-algbera}$ and $x\in A$. I'm trying to show thata)for $0<\alpha<\frac{1}{2}$, there exists $u\in A$ with $x=u(x^*x)^{\alpha}$ and $u^*u=(x^*x)^{1-2\alpha}$. b) there ...
6
votes
1answer
199 views

The strong operator limit of a sequence of unitary operators

If $\mathcal H$ is a Hilbert space and $U_n \in B(\mathcal H)$ is a strong-operator convergent sequence of unitary operators, say $U_n\rightarrow U$, is it true that $U$ is unitary? More explicitly, ...
6
votes
1answer
410 views

Matrices with entries in $C^*$-algebra

Let $\mathcal{A}$ be a $C^*$-algebra. Consider vector space of matrices of size $n\times n$ whose entries in $\mathcal{A}$. Denote this vector space $M_{n,n}(\mathcal{A})$. We can define involution on ...
6
votes
2answers
607 views

Double dual of the space $C[0,1]$

The second dual or double dual of the space of all continuous functions on $[0,1]$, $C[0,1]$ is von Neumann algebra. Can anyone help me identifying this space?
6
votes
1answer
309 views

What is the relationship between spectral resolution and spectral measure?

In Kadison and Ringrose's book "FUNDAMENTALS OF THE THEORY OF OPERATOR ALGEBRAS", the author gives the following theorem. Theorem: If $A$ is a self-adjoint operator acting on a Hilbert space ...
6
votes
1answer
296 views

Visualize operator algebras?

It seems to me that to study mathematics is to convert the abstract language into diagrams, graphs and images. It does depend on the subject how much this technique can ease the struggle yet most of ...