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A continuous Bowen-Mane type phenomenon

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  • In this work we exhibit a one-parameter family of $C^1$-diffeomorphisms $F_\alpha$ of the 2-sphere, where $\alpha>1$, such that the equator $\S^1$ is an attracting set for every $F_\alpha$ and $F_\alpha|_{\S^1}$ is the identity. For $\alpha>2$ the Lebesgue measure on the equator is a non ergodic physical measure having uncountably many ergodic components. On the other hand, for $1<\alpha\leq 2$ there is no physical measure for $F_\alpha$. If $\alpha<2$ this follows directly from the fact that the $\omega$-limit of almost every point is a single point on the equator (and the basin of each of these points has zero Lebesgue measure). This is no longer true for $\alpha=2$, and the non existence of physical measure in this critical case is a more subtle issue.
    Mathematics Subject Classification: Primary: 37C40. Secondary: 37A10.


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