Cosmology and astrophysics from relaxed galaxy clusters - IV. Robustly calibrating hydrostatic masses with weak lensing

D. E. Applegate, A. Mantz, S. W. Allen, A. von der Linden, R. Glenn Morris, S. Hilbert, Patrick L. Kelly, D. L. Burke, H. Ebeling, D. A. Rapetti, R. W. Schmidt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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This is the fourth in a series of papers studying the astrophysics and cosmology of massive, dynamically relaxed galaxy clusters. Here, we use measurements of weak gravitational lensing from the Weighing the Giants project to calibrate Chandra X-ray measurements of total mass that rely on the assumption of hydrostatic equilibrium. This comparison of X-ray and lensing masses measures the combined bias of X-ray hydrostatic masses from both astrophysical and instrumental sources. While we cannot disentangle the two sources of bias, only the combined bias is relevant for calibrating cosmological measurements using relaxed clusters. Assuming a fixed cosmology, and within a characteristic radius (r2500) determined from the X-ray data, we measure a lensing to X-ray mass ratio of 0.96 ± 9 per cent (stat) ± 9 per cent (sys). We find no significant trends of this ratio with mass, redshift or the morphological indicators used to select the sample. Our results imply that any departures from hydrostatic equilibrium at these radii are offset by calibration errors of comparable magnitude, with large departures of tensof- percent unlikely. In addition, we find a mean concentration of the sample measured from lensing data of c200 = 3.0-1.8.+4.4 Anticipated short-term improvements in lensing systematics, and a modest expansion of the relaxed lensing sample, can easily increase the measurement precision by 30-50 per cent, leading to similar improvements in cosmological constraints that employ X-ray hydrostatic mass estimates, such as on Ωm from the cluster gas mass fraction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1522-1534
Number of pages13
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 The Authors.


  • Cosmology: observations
  • Gravitational lensing: weak
  • X-rays: galaxies: clusters
  • galaxies: clusters: general


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