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Cosmicflows Constrained Local UniversE Simulations


This paper combines observational data sets and cosmological simulations to generate realistic numerical replicas of the nearby Universe. The latter are excellent laboratories for studies of the non-linear process of structure formation in our neighbourhood. With measurements of radial peculiar velocities in the local Universe (cosmicflows-2) and a newly developed technique, we produce Constrained Local UniversE Simulations (CLUES). To assess the quality of these constrained simulations, we compare them with random simulations as well as with local observations. The cosmic variance, defined as the mean one-sigma scatter of cell-to-cell comparison between two fields, is significantly smaller for the constrained simulations than for the random simulations. Within the inner part of the box where most of the constraints are, the scatter is smaller by a factor of 2 to 3 on a 5 h-1 Mpc scale with respect to that found for random simulations. This one-sigma scatter obtained when comparing the simulated and the observation-reconstructed velocity fields is only 104 ± 4 km s-1, i.e. the linear theory threshold. These two results demonstrate that these simulations are in agreement with each other and with the observations of our neighbourhood. For the first time, simulations constrained with observational radial peculiar velocities resemble the local Universe up to a distance of 150 h-1 Mpc on a scale of a few tens of megaparsecs. When focusing on the inner part of the box, the resemblance with our cosmic neighbourhood extends to a few megaparsecs (<5 h-1 Mpc). The simulations provide a proper large-scale environment for studies of the formation of nearby objects.


Sorce, Jenny G.; Gottlöber, Stefan; Yepes, Gustavo; Hoffman, Yehuda; Courtois, Helene M.; Steinmetz, Matthias; Tully, R. Brent; Pomarède, Daniel; Carlesi, Edoardo


Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters

Paper Publication Date

January 2016

Paper Type


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