University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy

Physics and Astronomy Calendar

Monday, April 8th 2019
12:15 pm:
Speaker: Lindsey Bleem, Argonne National Laboratory
Subject: Galaxy Cluster Cosmology with the South Pole Telescope

The South Pole Telescope (SPT) is a 10-meter millimeter-wavelength telescope located at the geographic South Pole, one of the world’s premier sites for millimeter-wave observations. It has been used to survey approximately 1/8 of the sky with arcminute-scale resolution over the course of the 3 surveys: the 2500-square-degree SPT-SZ survey, the 2700-square-degrees SPTpol Extended Cluster Survey, and the 500-square-degree SPTpol main survey (which reached depths of 5.3 uK-arcmin at 150 GHz, 3x deeper than SPT-SZ and 6x deeper than the wide area SPTpol survey). One of the primary objectives of these wide-area surveys has been the construction of a mass-limited sample of galaxy clusters identified via the thermal Sunyaev- Zel’dovich (SZ) effect, through which massive clusters imprint subtle temperature distortions on the cosmic microwave background. The abundance of such clusters is a powerful cosmological probe as it depends sensitively upon both the expansion history of the universe and the growth of density fluctuations. In this talk I will discuss progress analyzing these three datasets including updated cosmological constraints from the initial SPT-SZ cluster sample using weak gravitational lensing data from the Magellan and Hubble Space Telescopes as well as ongoing work from a new project characterizing the strong gravitational lensing properties of these systems in both observations and simulations. The results presented in this talk will be significantly improved with data from the ongoing SPT-3G survey that will identify an order of magnitude more clusters than previous generation SZ surveys.

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