The clustering of galaxies in the SDSS-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey: Analysis of potential systematics

Ashley J. Ross, Will J. Percival, Ariel G. Sánchez, Lado Samushia, Shirley Ho, Eyal Kazin, Marc Manera, Beth Reid, Martin White, Rita Tojeiro, Cameron K. McBride, Xiaoying Xu, David A. Wake, Michael A. Strauss, Francesco Montesano, Molly E C Swanson, Stephen Bailey, Adam S. Bolton, Antonio Montero Dorta, Daniel J. EisensteinHong Guo, Jean Christophe Hamilton, Robert C. Nichol, Nikhil Padmanabhan, Francisco Prada, David J. Schlegel, Mariana Vargas Magaña, Idit Zehavi, Michael Blanton, Dmitry Bizyaev, Howard Brewington, Antonio J. Cuesta, Elena Malanushenko, Viktor Malanushenko, Daniel Oravetz, John Parejko, Kaike Pan, Donald P. Schneider, Alaina Shelden, Audrey Simmons, Stephanie Snedden, Gong Bo Zhao

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    We analyse the density field of galaxies observed by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS)-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) included in the SDSS Data Release Nine (DR9). DR9 includes spectroscopic redshifts for over 400000 galaxies spread over a footprint of 3275deg2. We identify, characterize and mitigate the impact of sources of systematic uncertainty on large-scale clustering measurements, both for angular moments of the redshift-space correlation function, ξ(s), and the spherically averaged power spectrum, P(k), in order to ensure that robust cosmological constraints will be obtained from these data. A correlation between the projected density of stars and the higher redshift (0.43 < z < 0.7) galaxy sample (the approximately constant stellar mass threshold 'CMASS' sample) due to imaging systematics imparts a systematic error that is larger than the statistical error of the clustering measurements at scales s > 120h-1Mpc or k < 0.01hMpc-1. We find that these errors can be ameliorated by weighting galaxies based on their surface brightness and the local stellar density. The clustering of CMASS galaxies found in the Northern and Southern Galactic footprints of the survey generally agrees to within 2σ. We use mock galaxy catalogues that simulate the CMASS selection function to determine that randomly selecting galaxy redshifts in order to simulate the radial selection function of a random sample imparts the least systematic error on ξ(s) measurements and that this systematic error is negligible for the spherically averaged correlation function, ξ0. We find a peak in ξ0 at s∼ 200h-1Mpc, with a corresponding feature with period ∼0.03hMpc-1 in P(k), and find features at least as strong in 4.8 per cent of the mock galaxy catalogues, concluding this feature is likely to be a consequence of cosmic variance. The methods we recommend for the calculation of clustering measurements using the CMASS sample are adopted in companion papers that locate the position of the baryon acoustic oscillation feature, constrain cosmological models using the full shape of ξ0 and measure the rate of structure growth.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)564-590
    Number of pages27
    JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
    Volume424
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Jul 2012

    Fingerprint

    baryons
    oscillation
    galaxies
    oscillations
    footprint
    footprints
    systematic errors
    catalogs
    acoustics
    analysis
    power spectra
    brightness
    moments
    stars

    Keywords

    • Cosmology: observations
    • Distance scale
    • Large-scale structure of Universe

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Space and Planetary Science
    • Astronomy and Astrophysics

    Cite this

    The clustering of galaxies in the SDSS-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey : Analysis of potential systematics. / Ross, Ashley J.; Percival, Will J.; Sánchez, Ariel G.; Samushia, Lado; Ho, Shirley; Kazin, Eyal; Manera, Marc; Reid, Beth; White, Martin; Tojeiro, Rita; McBride, Cameron K.; Xu, Xiaoying; Wake, David A.; Strauss, Michael A.; Montesano, Francesco; Swanson, Molly E C; Bailey, Stephen; Bolton, Adam S.; Dorta, Antonio Montero; Eisenstein, Daniel J.; Guo, Hong; Hamilton, Jean Christophe; Nichol, Robert C.; Padmanabhan, Nikhil; Prada, Francisco; Schlegel, David J.; Magaña, Mariana Vargas; Zehavi, Idit; Blanton, Michael; Bizyaev, Dmitry; Brewington, Howard; Cuesta, Antonio J.; Malanushenko, Elena; Malanushenko, Viktor; Oravetz, Daniel; Parejko, John; Pan, Kaike; Schneider, Donald P.; Shelden, Alaina; Simmons, Audrey; Snedden, Stephanie; Zhao, Gong Bo.

    In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 424, No. 1, 07.2012, p. 564-590.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Ross, AJ, Percival, WJ, Sánchez, AG, Samushia, L, Ho, S, Kazin, E, Manera, M, Reid, B, White, M, Tojeiro, R, McBride, CK, Xu, X, Wake, DA, Strauss, MA, Montesano, F, Swanson, MEC, Bailey, S, Bolton, AS, Dorta, AM, Eisenstein, DJ, Guo, H, Hamilton, JC, Nichol, RC, Padmanabhan, N, Prada, F, Schlegel, DJ, Magaña, MV, Zehavi, I, Blanton, M, Bizyaev, D, Brewington, H, Cuesta, AJ, Malanushenko, E, Malanushenko, V, Oravetz, D, Parejko, J, Pan, K, Schneider, DP, Shelden, A, Simmons, A, Snedden, S & Zhao, GB 2012, 'The clustering of galaxies in the SDSS-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey: Analysis of potential systematics', Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, vol. 424, no. 1, pp. 564-590. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2012.21235.x
    Ross, Ashley J. ; Percival, Will J. ; Sánchez, Ariel G. ; Samushia, Lado ; Ho, Shirley ; Kazin, Eyal ; Manera, Marc ; Reid, Beth ; White, Martin ; Tojeiro, Rita ; McBride, Cameron K. ; Xu, Xiaoying ; Wake, David A. ; Strauss, Michael A. ; Montesano, Francesco ; Swanson, Molly E C ; Bailey, Stephen ; Bolton, Adam S. ; Dorta, Antonio Montero ; Eisenstein, Daniel J. ; Guo, Hong ; Hamilton, Jean Christophe ; Nichol, Robert C. ; Padmanabhan, Nikhil ; Prada, Francisco ; Schlegel, David J. ; Magaña, Mariana Vargas ; Zehavi, Idit ; Blanton, Michael ; Bizyaev, Dmitry ; Brewington, Howard ; Cuesta, Antonio J. ; Malanushenko, Elena ; Malanushenko, Viktor ; Oravetz, Daniel ; Parejko, John ; Pan, Kaike ; Schneider, Donald P. ; Shelden, Alaina ; Simmons, Audrey ; Snedden, Stephanie ; Zhao, Gong Bo. / The clustering of galaxies in the SDSS-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey : Analysis of potential systematics. In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. 2012 ; Vol. 424, No. 1. pp. 564-590.
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    T1 - The clustering of galaxies in the SDSS-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey

    T2 - Analysis of potential systematics

    AU - Ross, Ashley J.

    AU - Percival, Will J.

    AU - Sánchez, Ariel G.

    AU - Samushia, Lado

    AU - Ho, Shirley

    AU - Kazin, Eyal

    AU - Manera, Marc

    AU - Reid, Beth

    AU - White, Martin

    AU - Tojeiro, Rita

    AU - McBride, Cameron K.

    AU - Xu, Xiaoying

    AU - Wake, David A.

    AU - Strauss, Michael A.

    AU - Montesano, Francesco

    AU - Swanson, Molly E C

    AU - Bailey, Stephen

    AU - Bolton, Adam S.

    AU - Dorta, Antonio Montero

    AU - Eisenstein, Daniel J.

    AU - Guo, Hong

    AU - Hamilton, Jean Christophe

    AU - Nichol, Robert C.

    AU - Padmanabhan, Nikhil

    AU - Prada, Francisco

    AU - Schlegel, David J.

    AU - Magaña, Mariana Vargas

    AU - Zehavi, Idit

    AU - Blanton, Michael

    AU - Bizyaev, Dmitry

    AU - Brewington, Howard

    AU - Cuesta, Antonio J.

    AU - Malanushenko, Elena

    AU - Malanushenko, Viktor

    AU - Oravetz, Daniel

    AU - Parejko, John

    AU - Pan, Kaike

    AU - Schneider, Donald P.

    AU - Shelden, Alaina

    AU - Simmons, Audrey

    AU - Snedden, Stephanie

    AU - Zhao, Gong Bo

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    N2 - We analyse the density field of galaxies observed by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS)-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) included in the SDSS Data Release Nine (DR9). DR9 includes spectroscopic redshifts for over 400000 galaxies spread over a footprint of 3275deg2. We identify, characterize and mitigate the impact of sources of systematic uncertainty on large-scale clustering measurements, both for angular moments of the redshift-space correlation function, ξℓ(s), and the spherically averaged power spectrum, P(k), in order to ensure that robust cosmological constraints will be obtained from these data. A correlation between the projected density of stars and the higher redshift (0.43 < z < 0.7) galaxy sample (the approximately constant stellar mass threshold 'CMASS' sample) due to imaging systematics imparts a systematic error that is larger than the statistical error of the clustering measurements at scales s > 120h-1Mpc or k < 0.01hMpc-1. We find that these errors can be ameliorated by weighting galaxies based on their surface brightness and the local stellar density. The clustering of CMASS galaxies found in the Northern and Southern Galactic footprints of the survey generally agrees to within 2σ. We use mock galaxy catalogues that simulate the CMASS selection function to determine that randomly selecting galaxy redshifts in order to simulate the radial selection function of a random sample imparts the least systematic error on ξℓ(s) measurements and that this systematic error is negligible for the spherically averaged correlation function, ξ0. We find a peak in ξ0 at s∼ 200h-1Mpc, with a corresponding feature with period ∼0.03hMpc-1 in P(k), and find features at least as strong in 4.8 per cent of the mock galaxy catalogues, concluding this feature is likely to be a consequence of cosmic variance. The methods we recommend for the calculation of clustering measurements using the CMASS sample are adopted in companion papers that locate the position of the baryon acoustic oscillation feature, constrain cosmological models using the full shape of ξ0 and measure the rate of structure growth.

    AB - We analyse the density field of galaxies observed by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS)-III Baryon Oscillation Spectroscopic Survey (BOSS) included in the SDSS Data Release Nine (DR9). DR9 includes spectroscopic redshifts for over 400000 galaxies spread over a footprint of 3275deg2. We identify, characterize and mitigate the impact of sources of systematic uncertainty on large-scale clustering measurements, both for angular moments of the redshift-space correlation function, ξℓ(s), and the spherically averaged power spectrum, P(k), in order to ensure that robust cosmological constraints will be obtained from these data. A correlation between the projected density of stars and the higher redshift (0.43 < z < 0.7) galaxy sample (the approximately constant stellar mass threshold 'CMASS' sample) due to imaging systematics imparts a systematic error that is larger than the statistical error of the clustering measurements at scales s > 120h-1Mpc or k < 0.01hMpc-1. We find that these errors can be ameliorated by weighting galaxies based on their surface brightness and the local stellar density. The clustering of CMASS galaxies found in the Northern and Southern Galactic footprints of the survey generally agrees to within 2σ. We use mock galaxy catalogues that simulate the CMASS selection function to determine that randomly selecting galaxy redshifts in order to simulate the radial selection function of a random sample imparts the least systematic error on ξℓ(s) measurements and that this systematic error is negligible for the spherically averaged correlation function, ξ0. We find a peak in ξ0 at s∼ 200h-1Mpc, with a corresponding feature with period ∼0.03hMpc-1 in P(k), and find features at least as strong in 4.8 per cent of the mock galaxy catalogues, concluding this feature is likely to be a consequence of cosmic variance. The methods we recommend for the calculation of clustering measurements using the CMASS sample are adopted in companion papers that locate the position of the baryon acoustic oscillation feature, constrain cosmological models using the full shape of ξ0 and measure the rate of structure growth.

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