Title: The WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey: Cosmological neutrino mass constraint from blue high-redshift galaxies Authors: Signe Riemer--Sørensen, Chris Blake, David Parkinson, Tamara M. Davis, Sarah Brough, Matthew Colless, Carlos Contreras, Warrick Couch, Scott Croom, Darren Croton, Michael J. Drinkwater, Karl Forster, David Gilbank, Mike Gladders, Karl Glazebrook, Ben Jelliffe, Russell J. Jurek, I-hui Li, Barry Madore, D. Christopher Martin, Kevin Pimbblet, Gregory B. Poole, Michael Pracy, Rob Sharp, Emily Wisnioski, David Woods, Ted K. Wyder, H.K.C. Yee

The absolute neutrino mass scale is currently unknown, but can be constrained from cosmology. The WiggleZ high redshift star-forming blue galaxy sample is less sensitive to systematics from non-linear structure formation, redshift-space distortions and galaxy bias than previous surveys. We obtain a upper limit on the sum of neutrino masses of 0.60eV (95% confidence) for WiggleZ+Wilkinson Microwave Anisotropy Probe. Combining with priors on the Hubble Parameter and the baryon acoustic oscillation scale gives an upper limit of 0.29eV, which is the strongest neutrino mass constraint derived from spectroscopic galaxy redshift surveys.

Title: The WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey: testing the cosmological model with baryon acoustic oscillations at z=0.6 Authors: Chris Blake, Tamara Davis, Gregory Poole, David Parkinson, Sarah Brough, Matthew Colless, Carlos Contreras, Warrick Couch, Scott Croom, Michael J. Drinkwater, Karl Forster, David Gilbank, Mike Gladders, Karl Glazebrook, Ben Jelliffe, Russell J. Jurek, I-hui Li, Barry Madore, Chris Martin, Kevin Pimbblet, Michael Pracy, Rob Sharp, Emily Wisnioski, David Woods, Ted Wyder, Howard Yee

We measure the imprint of baryon acoustic oscillations (BAOs) in the galaxy clustering pattern at the highest redshift achieved to date, z=0.6, using the distribution of N=132,509 emission-line galaxies in the WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey. We quantify BAOs using three statistics: the galaxy correlation function, power spectrum and the band-filtered estimator introduced by Xu et al. (2010). The results are mutually consistent, corresponding to a 4.0% measurement of the cosmic distance-redshift relation at z=0.6 (in terms of the acoustic parameter "A(z)" introduced by Eisenstein et al. (2005) we find A(z=0.6) = 0.452 ±0.018). Both BAOs and power spectrum shape information contribute toward these constraints. The statistical significance of the detection of the acoustic peak in the correlation function, relative to a wiggle-free model, is 3.2-sigma. The ratios of our distance measurements to those obtained using BAOs in the distribution of Luminous Red Galaxies at redshifts z=0.2 and z=0.35 are consistent with a flat Lambda Cold Dark Matter model that also provides a good fit to the pattern of observed fluctuations in the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) radiation. The addition of the current WiggleZ data results in a ~ 30% improvement in the measurement accuracy of a constant equation-of-state, w, using BAO data alone. Based solely on geometric BAO distance ratios, accelerating expansion (w < -1/3) is required with a probability of 99.8%, providing a consistency check of conclusions based on supernovae observations. Further improvements in cosmological constraints will result when the WiggleZ Survey dataset is complete.

Title: The WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey: the growth rate of cosmic structure since redshift z=0.9 Authors: Chris Blake, Sarah Brough, Matthew Colless, Carlos Contreras, Warrick Couch, Scott Croom, Tamara Davis, Michael J. Drinkwater, Karl Forster, David Gilbank, Mike Gladders, Karl Glazebrook, Ben Jelliffe, Russell J. Jurek, I-hui Li, Barry Madore, Chris Martin, Kevin Pimbblet, Gregory Poole, Michael Pracy, Rob Sharp, Emily Wisnioski, David Woods, Ted Wyder, Howard Yee

We present precise measurements of the growth rate of cosmic structure for the redshift range 0.1 < z < 0.9, using redshift-space distortions in the galaxy power spectrum of the WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey. Our results, which have a precision of around 10% in four independent redshift bins, are well-fit by a flat LCDM cosmological model with matter density parameter Omega_m = 0.27. Our analysis hence indicates that this model provides a self-consistent description of the growth of cosmic structure through large-scale perturbations and the homogeneous cosmic expansion mapped by supernovae and baryon acoustic oscillations. We achieve robust results by systematically comparing our data with several different models of the quasi-linear growth of structure including empirical models, fitting formulae calibrated to N-body simulations, and perturbation theory techniques. We extract the first measurements of the power spectrum of the velocity divergence field, P_vv(k), as a function of redshift (under the assumption that P_gv(k) = -sqrt[P_gg(k) P_vv(k)] where g is the galaxy overdensity field), and demonstrate that the WiggleZ galaxy-mass cross-correlation is consistent with a deterministic (rather than stochastic) scale-independent bias model for WiggleZ galaxies for scales k < 0.3 h/Mpc. Measurements of the cosmic growth rate from the WiggleZ Survey and other current and future observations offer a powerful test of the physical nature of dark energy that is complementary to distance-redshift measures such as supernovae and baryon acoustic oscillations.

Michael Drinkwater is an astronomer heading a research group called WiggleZ, which explores the formation and function of the universe. But his most interesting work is that he is a regular time traveller. A couple of times a year, he transports himself some billions of years into the past with the aid of his time machine - in fact, just a telescope. Read more

Title: The WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey: Direct constraints on blue galaxy intrinsic alignments at intermediate redshifts Authors: Rachel Mandelbaum, Chris Blake, Sarah Bridle, Filipe B. Abdalla, Sarah Brough, Matthew Colless, Warrick Couch, Scott Croom, Tamara Davis, Michael J. Drinkwater, Karl Forster, Karl Glazebrook, Ben Jelliffe, Russell J. Jurek, I-hui Li, Barry Madore, Chris Martin, Kevin Pimbblet, Gregory B. Poole, Michael Pracy, Rob Sharp, Emily Wisnioski, David Woods, Ted Wyder (Version, v2)

Correlations between the intrinsic shapes of galaxy pairs, and between the intrinsic shapes of galaxies and the large-scale density field, may be induced by tidal fields. These correlations, which have been detected at low redshifts (z<0.35) for bright red galaxies in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), and for which upper limits exist for blue galaxies at z~0.1, provide a window into galaxy formation and evolution, and are also an important contaminant for current and future weak lensing surveys. Measurements of these alignments at intermediate redshifts (z~0.6) that are more relevant for cosmic shear observations are very important for understanding the origin and redshift evolution of these alignments, and for minimising their impact on weak lensing measurements. We present the first such intermediate-redshift measurement for blue galaxies, using galaxy shape measurements from SDSS and spectroscopic redshifts from the WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey. Our null detection allows us to place upper limits on the contamination of weak lensing measurements by blue galaxy intrinsic alignments that, for the first time, do not require significant model-dependent extrapolation from the z~0.1 SDSS observations. Also, combining the SDSS and WiggleZ constraints gives us a long redshift baseline with which to constrain intrinsic alignment models and contamination of the cosmic shear power spectrum. Assuming that the alignments can be explained by linear alignment with the smoothed local density field, we find that a measurement of \sigma_8 in a blue-galaxy dominated, CFHTLS-like survey would be contaminated by at most ±0.02 (95% confidence level, SDSS and WiggleZ) or ±0.03 (WiggleZ alone) due to intrinsic alignments.

Australian astronomers have released the first set of data from the first project to look at the effects of "dark energy" halfway back in the Universe's lifetime. Called WiggleZ ("wiggles"), the project is being done with the Anglo-Australian Telescope in NSW and is led by Professor Michael Drinkwater of UQ's School of Mathematics and Physics. Dark Energy is an unidentified component of the Universe that is causing the expansion of the Universe to speed up. Read more

-- Edited by Blobrana on Monday 7th of December 2009 09:43:02 PM