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Given a finite collection S of geometric objects such as hyperplanes or spheres in ℝd, the arrangement A(S) is the decomposition of ℝd into connected open cells of dimensions 0; 1;::: ; d induced by S. Besides being interesting in their own right, arrangements of hyperplanes have served as a unifying structure for many problems in discrete and computational geometry. With the recent advances in the study of arrangements of curved (algebraic) surfaces, arrangements have emerged as the underlying structure of geometric problems in a variety of “physical world” application domains such as robot motion planning and computer vision. This chapter is devoted to arrangements of hyperplanes and of curved surfaces in low-dimensional Euclidean space, with an emphasis on combinatorics and algorithms. In the first section we introduce basic terminology and combinatorics of arrangements. In Section 28.2 we describe substructures in arrangements and their combinatorial complexity. Section 28.3 deals with data structures for representing arrangements and with special refinements of arrangements. The following two sections focus on algorithms: algorithms for constructing full arrangements are described in Section 28.4, and algorithms for constructing substructures in Section 28.5. In Section 28.6 we discuss the relation between arrangements and other structures. Several applications of arrangements are reviewed in Section 28.7. Section 28.8 deals with robustness issues when implementing algorithms and data structures for arrangements and Section 28.9 surveys software implementations. We conclude in Section 28.10 with a brief review of Davenport-Schinzel sequences, a combinatorial structure that plays an important role in the analysis of arrangements.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Discrete and Computational Geometry, Third Edition
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages40
ISBN (Electronic)9781498711425
ISBN (Print)9781498711395
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2017


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