It is shown that in dimension greater than four, the minimal area hypersurface separating the faces of a hypercube is the cone over the edges of the hypercube. This constrasts with the cases of two and three dimensions, where the cone is not minimal. For example, a soap film on a cubical frame has a small rounded square in the center. In dimensions over 6, the cone is minimal even if the area separating opposite faces is given zero weight. The proof uses the maximal flow problem that is dual to the minimal surface problem.
Math Subject Classification49Q05 49Q20 49N15
Key Words and PhrasesCalculus of variations calibrations hypercube minimal cones minimal surfaces
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