I would like to have a precise definition of the topological space called "full-twist" Möbius strip $M$, i.e. a Möbius band with a $360$ degree twist (the usual Möbius strip has just a half-twist).

This space appear in these questions: (1) and (2). The second one states that $M$ is homeomorphic to a cylinder, which first of all requires some kind of definition for $M$.

I don't think that a parametrization in $\Bbb R^3$ would be a good definition. In general, I've seen the usual Möbius strip defined as a quotient of $[0,1]^2$. Could we do the same in order to define $M$ ? I'm not sure how to do it.

Thank you for your comments!

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ You don't see the full twist when considering the two-dimensional strip. You need somehow to take into account the 3rd dimension. $\endgroup$
    – H. H. Rugh
    Aug 20 '16 at 14:10
  • $\begingroup$ Related: math.stackexchange.com/questions/1379300 $\endgroup$
    – Watson
    Aug 26 '16 at 13:14

Topologically the full-twist strip and the untwisted strip are identical. The only difference is the way they are immersed in $\Bbb R^3$. So you aren't going to get an intrinsic characterization that is like the quotient space one you mentioned. (To see this, consider how you make a full-twist strip: take the untwisted strip, cut it across, twist it, and then rejoin each point on the cut to exactly the same points it was attached to before the cut. Or imagine twisting the strip in $\Bbb R^4$ instead of in $\Bbb R^3$.)

Knot theory faces a similar problem. Two linked circles are topologically identical to two unlinked circles: they are both the disjoint union of two circles. (Compare these with the boundaries of your two kinds of strips.) But knot theory wants to distinguish not the spaces themselves but the way they are immersed in $\Bbb R^3$. One way this is done is to consider the complement of the two sets in $\Bbb R^3$. Say the full-twist strip is $F_2$ and the no-twist strip is $F_0$. Then consider the spaces $ \Bbb R^3-F_2$ and $\Bbb R^3-F_0$. These are topologically distinct. But to really carry this out may be difficult.


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