Curves of constant diameter and inscribed polygons

Research paper by Mathieu Baillif

Indexed on: 10 Feb '12Published on: 10 Feb '12Published in: Mathematics - Metric Geometry


A simple closed curve in the Euclidean plane is said to have property C_n(R) if at each point we can inscribe a unique regular $n$-gon with edges length $R$. C_2(R) is equivalent to having constant diameter. We show that smooth curves satisfying C_n(R) other than the circle do exist for all n, and that the circle is the only $C^2$ regular curve satisfying C_2(R) and C_4(R') where $R'=R/\sqrt{2}$. In an addendum, we show that the last assertion holds for any R and R'. The proofs use only elementary differential calculus and geometry.