Journal Article

A new independent limit on the cosmological constant/dark energy from the relativistic bending of light by Galaxies and clusters of Galaxies

M. Ishak, W. Rindler, J. Dossett, J. Moldenhauer and C. Allison

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 388, issue 3, pages 1279-1283
Published in print August 2008 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online July 2008 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2008.13468.x
A new independent limit on the cosmological constant/dark energy from the relativistic bending of light by Galaxies and clusters of Galaxies

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We derive new limits on the value of the cosmological constant, Λ, based on the Einstein bending of light by systems where the lens is a distant galaxy or a cluster of galaxies. We use an amended lens equation in which the contribution of Λ to the Einstein deflection angle is taken into account and use observations of Einstein radii around several lens systems. We use in our calculations a Schwarzschild–de Sitter vacuole exactly matched into a Friedmann–Robertson–Walker background and show that a Λ-contribution term appears in the deflection angle within the lens equation. We find that the contribution of the Λ-term to the bending angle is larger than the second-order term for many lens systems. Using these observations of bending angles, we derive new limits on the value of Λ. These limits constitute the best observational upper bound on Λ after cosmological constraints and are only two orders of magnitude away from the value determined by those cosmological constraints.

Keywords: gravitation; gravitational lensing; cosmology: theory

Journal Article.  2888 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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