The 6dF Galaxy Survey: Z almost equal to 0 measurements of the growth rate and sigma 8


Beutler, Florian; Blake, Chris; Colless, Matthew; Jones, D. Heath; Staveley-Smith, Lister; Poole, Gregory B.; Campbell, Lachlan; Parker, Quentin; Saunders, Will; Watson, Fred


We present a detailed analysis of redshift-space distortions in the two-point correlation function of the 6dF Galaxy Survey (6dFGS). The K-band selected sub-sample which we employ in this study contains 81971 galaxies distributed over 17000deg^2 with an effective redshift z = 0.067. By modelling the 2D galaxy correlation function, xi(r_p,pi), we measure the parameter combination f(z)sigma_8(z) = 0.423 +/- 0.055. Alternatively, by assuming standard gravity we can break the degeneracy between sigma_8 and the galaxy bias parameter, b. Combining our data with the Hubble constant prior from Riess et al (2011), we measure sigma_8 = 0.76 +/- 0.11 and Omega_m = 0.250 +/- 0.022, consistent with constraints from other galaxy surveys and the Cosmic Microwave Background data from WMAP7. Combining our measurement of fsigma_8 with WMAP7 allows us to test the relationship between matter and gravity on cosmic scales by constraining the growth index of density fluctuations, gamma. Using only 6dFGS and WMAP7 data we find gamma = 0.547 +/- 0.088, consistent with the prediction of General Relativity. We note that because of the low effective redshift of 6dFGS our measurement of the growth rate is independent of the fiducial cosmological model (Alcock-Paczynski effect). We also show that our conclusions are not sensitive to the model adopted for non-linear redshift-space distortions. Using a Fisher matrix analysis we report predictions for constraints on fsigma_8 for the WALLABY survey and the proposed TAIPAN survey. The WALLABY survey will be able to measure fsigma_8 with a precision of 4-10%, depending on the modelling of non-linear structure formation. This is comparable to the predicted precision for the best redshift bins of the Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS), demonstrating that low-redshift surveys have a significant role to play in future tests of dark energy and modified gravity.

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Publication type

Journal article


Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 423, no. 4 (Jul 2012), pp. 3430-3444






Copyright © 2012 The authors. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society Copyright © 2012 RAS.