01397nas a2200121 4500008004100000245006800041210006600109260001000175520100500185653002801190100002101218856003601239 2011 en d00aInvariants, volumes and heat kernels in sub-Riemannian geometry0 aInvariants volumes and heat kernels in subRiemannian geometry bSISSA3 aSub-Riemannian geometry can be seen as a generalization of Riemannian geometry under non-holonomic constraints. From the theoretical point of view, sub-Riemannian geometry is the geometry underlying the theory of hypoelliptic operators (see [32, 57, 70, 92] and references therein) and many problems of geometric measure theory (see for instance [18, 79]). In applications it appears in the study of many mechanical problems (robotics, cars with trailers, etc.) and recently in modern elds of research such as mathematical models of human behaviour, quantum control or motion of self-propulsed micro-organism (see for instance [15, 29, 34])\\r\\nVery recently, it appeared in the eld of cognitive neuroscience to model the\\r\\nfunctional architecture of the area V1 of the primary visual cortex, as proposed by Petitot in [87, 86], and then by Citti and Sarti in [51]. In this context, the sub-Riemannian heat equation has been used as basis to new applications in image reconstruction (see [35]).10aSub-Riemannian geometry1 aBarilari, Davide uhttp://hdl.handle.net/1963/6124