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Dark matter maps reveal cosmic scaffolding

Abstract

Ordinary baryonic particles (such as protons and neutrons) account for only one-sixth of the total matter in the Universe. The remainder is a mysterious 'dark matter' component, which does not interact via electromagnetism and thus neither emits nor reflects light. As dark matter cannot be seen directly using traditional observations, very little is currently known about its properties. It does interact via gravity, and is most effectively probed through gravitational lensing: the deflection of light from distant galaxies by the gravitational attraction of foreground mass concentrations. This is a purely geometrical effect that is free of astrophysical assumptions and sensitive to all matter - whether baryonic or dark. Here we show high-fidelity maps of the large-scale distribution of dark matter, resolved in both angle and depth. We find a loose network of filaments, growing over time, which intersect in massive structures at the locations of clusters of galaxies. Our results are consistent with predictions of gravitationally induced structure formation, in which the initial, smooth distribution of dark matter collapses into filaments then into clusters, forming a gravitational scaffold into which gas can accumulate, and stars can be built. (authors)
Authors:
Massey, R; Rhodes, J; Ellis, R; Scoville, N; Capak, P; [1]  Rhodes, J; [2]  Leauthaud, A; Kneib, J P; [3]  Finoguenov, A; [4]  Bacon, D; Taylor, A; [5]  Aussel, H; Refregier, A; [6]  Koekemoer, A; Mobasher, B; [7]  McCracken, H; [8]  Pires, S; Starck, J L; [9]  Pires, S; [10]  Sasaki, S; Taniguchi, Y; [11]  Taylor, J [12] 
  1. CALTECH, Pasadena, CA 91125 (United States)
  2. CALTECH, Jet Prop Lab, Pasadena, CA 91109 (United States)
  3. Lab Astrophys Marseille, F-13376 Marseille, (France)
  4. Max Planck Inst Extraterr Phys, D-85748 Garching, (Germany)
  5. Inst Astron, Edinburgh EH9 3HJ, Midlothian, (United Kingdom)
  6. CNRS, CEA, Unite Mixte Rech, AIM, F-91191 Gif Sur Yvette, (France)
  7. Univ Paris 07, CE Saclay, UMR 7158, F-91191 Gif Sur Yvette, (France)
  8. Space Telescope Sci Inst, Baltimore, MD 21218 (United States)
  9. Univ Paris 06, Inst Astrophys Paris, F-75014 Paris, (France)
  10. Ctr Etud Saclay, CEA, DSM, DAPNIA, SEDI, F-91191 Gif Sur Yvette, (France)
  11. Ehime Univ, Dept Phys, Matsuyama, Ehime 7908577, (Japan)
  12. Univ Waterloo, Dept Phys and Astron, Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1, (Canada)
Publication Date:
Jul 01, 2007
Product Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Nature (London); Journal Volume: 445; Journal Issue: 7125; Other Information: 30 refs
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; BARYONS; GALAXY CLUSTERS; GRAVITATIONAL LENSES; MAPS; NOISE; NONLUMINOUS MATTER; RED SHIFT
OSTI ID:
21247721
Country of Origin:
France
Language:
English
Other Identifying Numbers:
Journal ID: ISSN 0028-0836; NATUAS; TRN: FR09F0215108457
Availability:
Available from doi: <http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/nature05497>;INIS
Submitting Site:
FRN
Size:
page(s) 286-290
Announcement Date:
Dec 31, 2009

Citation Formats

Massey, R, Rhodes, J, Ellis, R, Scoville, N, Capak, P, Rhodes, J, Leauthaud, A, Kneib, J P, Finoguenov, A, Bacon, D, Taylor, A, Aussel, H, Refregier, A, Koekemoer, A, Mobasher, B, McCracken, H, Pires, S, Starck, J L, Pires, S, Sasaki, S, Taniguchi, Y, and Taylor, J. Dark matter maps reveal cosmic scaffolding. France: N. p., 2007. Web. doi:10.1038/NATURE05497.
Massey, R, Rhodes, J, Ellis, R, Scoville, N, Capak, P, Rhodes, J, Leauthaud, A, Kneib, J P, Finoguenov, A, Bacon, D, Taylor, A, Aussel, H, Refregier, A, Koekemoer, A, Mobasher, B, McCracken, H, Pires, S, Starck, J L, Pires, S, Sasaki, S, Taniguchi, Y, & Taylor, J. Dark matter maps reveal cosmic scaffolding. France. doi:10.1038/NATURE05497.
Massey, R, Rhodes, J, Ellis, R, Scoville, N, Capak, P, Rhodes, J, Leauthaud, A, Kneib, J P, Finoguenov, A, Bacon, D, Taylor, A, Aussel, H, Refregier, A, Koekemoer, A, Mobasher, B, McCracken, H, Pires, S, Starck, J L, Pires, S, Sasaki, S, Taniguchi, Y, and Taylor, J. 2007. "Dark matter maps reveal cosmic scaffolding." France. doi:10.1038/NATURE05497. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/10.1038/NATURE05497.
@misc{etde_21247721,
title = {Dark matter maps reveal cosmic scaffolding}
author = {Massey, R, Rhodes, J, Ellis, R, Scoville, N, Capak, P, Rhodes, J, Leauthaud, A, Kneib, J P, Finoguenov, A, Bacon, D, Taylor, A, Aussel, H, Refregier, A, Koekemoer, A, Mobasher, B, McCracken, H, Pires, S, Starck, J L, Pires, S, Sasaki, S, Taniguchi, Y, and Taylor, J}
abstractNote = {Ordinary baryonic particles (such as protons and neutrons) account for only one-sixth of the total matter in the Universe. The remainder is a mysterious 'dark matter' component, which does not interact via electromagnetism and thus neither emits nor reflects light. As dark matter cannot be seen directly using traditional observations, very little is currently known about its properties. It does interact via gravity, and is most effectively probed through gravitational lensing: the deflection of light from distant galaxies by the gravitational attraction of foreground mass concentrations. This is a purely geometrical effect that is free of astrophysical assumptions and sensitive to all matter - whether baryonic or dark. Here we show high-fidelity maps of the large-scale distribution of dark matter, resolved in both angle and depth. We find a loose network of filaments, growing over time, which intersect in massive structures at the locations of clusters of galaxies. Our results are consistent with predictions of gravitationally induced structure formation, in which the initial, smooth distribution of dark matter collapses into filaments then into clusters, forming a gravitational scaffold into which gas can accumulate, and stars can be built. (authors)}
doi = {10.1038/NATURE05497}
journal = {Nature (London)}
issue = {7125}
volume = {445}
place = {France}
year = {2007}
month = {Jul}
}