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On the statistics of proto-cluster candidates detected in the Planck all-sky survey

Negrello, M. ORCID:, Gonzalez-Nuevo, J., De Zotti, G., Bonato, M., Cai, Z.-Y., Clements, D., Danese, L., Dole, H., Greenslade, J., Lapi, A. and Montier, L. 2017. On the statistics of proto-cluster candidates detected in the Planck all-sky survey. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 470 (2) , pp. 2253-2261. 10.1093/mnras/stx1367

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Observational investigations of the abundance of massive precursors of local galaxy clusters (‘proto-clusters’) allow us to test the growth of density perturbations, to constrain cosmological parameters that control it, to test the theory of non-linear collapse and how the galaxy formation takes place in dense environments. The Planck collaboration has recently published a catalogue of ≳2000 cold extragalactic sub-millimeter sources, i.e. with colours indicative of z ≳ 2, almost all of which appear to be overdensities of star-forming galaxies. They are thus considered as proto-cluster candidates. Their number densities (or their flux densities) are far in excess of expectations from the standard scenario for the evolution of large-scale structure. Simulations based on a physically motivated galaxy evolution model show that essentially all cold peaks brighter than S545GHz = 500 mJy found in Planck maps after having removed the Galactic dust emission can be interpreted as positive Poisson fluctuations of the number of high-z dusty proto-clusters within the same Planck beam, rather then being individual clumps of physically bound galaxies. This conclusion does not change if an empirical fit to the luminosity function of dusty galaxies is used instead of the physical model. The simulations accurately reproduce the statistic of the Planck detections and yield distributions of sizes and ellipticities in qualitative agreement with observations. The redshift distribution of the brightest proto-clusters contributing to the cold peaks has a broad maximum at 1.5 ≤ z ≤ 3. Therefore follow-up of Planck proto-cluster candidates will provide key information on the high-z evolution of large scale structure.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Physics and Astronomy
Additional Information: PDF uploaded in accordance with publisher's policies at (accessed 9.6.17).
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISSN: 0035-8711
Funders: European Unionâs Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skl odowska-Curie grant agreement No 707601
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 9 June 2017
Date of Acceptance: 31 May 2017
Last Modified: 13 Nov 2023 07:49

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