# Sets with constant normal in Carnot groups: properties and examples

### Costante Bellettini

University College London, UK### Enrico Le Donne

Università di Pisa, Italy and University of Jyväskylä, Finland

## Abstract

We analyze subsets of Carnot groups that have intrinsic constant normal, as they appear in the blowup study of sets that have finite subRiemannian perimeter. The purpose of this paper is threefold. First, we prove some mild regularity and structural results in arbitrary Carnot groups. Namely, we show that for every constant-normal set in a Carnot group its subRiemannian-Lebesgue representative is regularly open, contractible, and its topological boundary coincides with the reduced boundary and with the measure-theoretic boundary. We infer these properties from a metric cone property. Such a cone will be a semisubgroup with nonempty interior that is canonically associated with the normal direction. We characterize the constant-normal sets exactly as those that are arbitrary unions of translations of such semisubgroups. Second, making use of such a characterization, we provide some pathological examples in the specific case of the free-Carnot group of step 3 and rank 2. Namely, we construct a constant normal set that, with respect to any Riemannian metric, is not of locally finite perimeter; we also construct an example with non-unique intrinsic blowup at some point, showing that it has different upper and lower subRiemannian density at the origin. Third, we show that in Carnot groups of step 4 or less, every constant-normal set is intrinsically rectifiable, in the sense of Franchi, Serapioni, and Serra Cassano.

## Cite this article

Costante Bellettini, Enrico Le Donne, Sets with constant normal in Carnot groups: properties and examples. Comment. Math. Helv. 96 (2021), no. 1, pp. 149–198

DOI 10.4171/CMH/510