Large-scale motions and growth rate from forward-modelling Tully–Fisher peculiar velocities

Paula Boubel, Matthew Colless, Khaled Said, Lister Staveley-Smith

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Peculiar velocities are an important probe of the mass distribution in the Universe and the growth rate of structure, directly measuring the effects of gravity on the largest scales and providing a test for theories of gravity. Comparing peculiar velocities predicted from the density field mapped by a galaxy redshift survey with peculiar velocities measured using a distance estimator such as the Tully–Fisher relation yields the growth factor for large-scale structure. We present a method for forward modelling a sample of galaxy magnitudes and velocity widths that simultaneously determines the parameters of the Tully–Fisher relation and the peculiar velocity field. We apply this to the Cosmicflows-4 Tully–Fisher data set, using the peculiar velocities predicted from the 2M++ redshift survey. After validating the method on mock surveys, we measure the product of the growth rate and mass fluctuation amplitude to be fσ8 = 0.35 ± 0.03 at an effective redshift of z = 0.017. This is consistent at 3σ with the Planck CMB prediction, even though the uncertainty does not fully account for all sources of sample variance. We find the residual bulk flow from gravitational influences outside the 2M++ survey volume to be |V| = 227 ± 11 km s−1, (l, b) = (303, −1) in Galactic polar coordinates and the CMB frame. Using simulations, we show that applying our methodology to the large new sample of Tully–Fisher peculiar velocities expected from the WALLABY H I survey of the southern sky can improve the constraints on the growth rate by a factor of 2–3.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-109
Number of pages26
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number1
Early online date27 Apr 2024
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2024


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