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Characterizing projections among positive operators in the unit sphere. (arXiv:1804.04507v1 [math.OA])

Let $E$ and $P$ be subsets of a Banach space $X$, and let us define the unit sphere around $E$ in $P$ as the set $$Sph(E;P) :=\left\{ x\in P : \|x-b\|=1 \hbox{ for all } b\in E \right\}.$$ Given a C$^*$-algebra $A$, and a subset $E\subset A,$ we shall write $Sph^+ (E)$ or $Sph_A^+ (E)$ for the set $Sph(E;S(A^+)),$ where $S(A^+)$ stands for the set of all positive operators in the unit sphere of $A$. We prove that, for an arbitrary complex Hilbert space $H$, then a positive element $a$ in the unit sphere of $B(H)$ is a projection if and only if $Sph^+_{B(H)} \left( Sph^+_{B(H)}(\{a\}) \right) =\{a\}$. We also prove that the equivalence remains true when $B(H)$ is replaced with an atomic von Neumann algebra or with $K(H_2)$, where $H_2$ is an infinite-dimensional and separable complex Hilbert space. In the setting of compact operators we prove a stronger conclusion by showing that the identity $$Sph^+_{K(H_2)} \left( Sph^+_{K(H_2)}(a) \right) =\left\{ b\in S(K(H_2)^+) : \!\! \begin{array查看全文

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