Journal Article

Cosmological information in the gravitational lensing of pregalactic H <span class="smallCaps">i</span>

R. Benton Metcalf and S. D. M. White

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 394, issue 2, pages 704-714
Published in print April 2009 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online March 2009 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Cosmological information in the gravitational lensing of pregalactic H i

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We study the constraints which the next generation of radio telescopes could place on the nature of dark energy, dark matter and inflation by studying the gravitational lensing of high redshift 21 m emission, and we compare with the constraints obtainable from wide-angle surveys of galaxy lensing. If the reionization epoch is effectively at z∼ 8 or later, very large amounts of cosmological information will be accessible to telescopes like Square Kilometer Array (SKA) and Low Frequency Array (LOFAR). We use simple characterizations of reionization history and of proposed telescope designs to investigate how well the two-dimensional convergence power spectrum, the three-dimensional matter power spectrum, the evolution of the linear growth function and the standard cosmological parameters can be measured from radio data. The power spectra can be measured accurately over a wide range of wavenumbers at z∼ 2, and the evolution in the cosmic energy density can be probed from z∼ 0.5 to 7. This results in a characterization of the shape of the power spectra (i.e. of the nature of dark matter and of inflationary structure generation) which is potentially more precise than that obtained from galaxy lensing surveys. On the other hand, the dark energy parameters in their conventional parametrization (ΩΛ, wo, wa) are somewhat less well constrained by feasible 21 cm lensing surveys than by an all-sky galaxy lensing survey. This is because dark energy is felt primarily at relatively low redshifts in this model; 21 cm surveys would be more powerful than galaxy surveys for constraining models with ‘early’ dark energy. Overall, the best constraints come from combining surveys of the two types. This results in extremely tight constraints on dark matter and inflation, and improves constraints on dark energy, as judged by the standard figure of merit, by more than an order of magnitude over either survey alone.

Keywords: gravitational lensing; intergalactic medium; dark matter; large-scale structure of Universe

Journal Article.  8284 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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