A low-scatter survey-based mass proxy for clusters of galaxies
INAF – Osservatorio Astronomico di Brera, via Brera 28, 20121 Milano, Italy
Received: 24 August 2012
Accepted: 17 October 2012
Estimates of cosmological parameters using galaxy clusters have the scatter in the observable at a given mass as a fundamental parameter. This work computes the amplitude of the scatter for a newly introduced mass proxy, the product of the cluster total luminosity times the mass-to-light ratio, usually referred as stellar mass. The analysis of 12 galaxy clusters with excellent total masses shows a tight correlation between the stellar mass, or stellar fraction, and total mass within r500 with negligible intrinsic scatter: the 90% upper limit is 0.06 dex, the posterior mean is 0.027 dex. This scatter is similar to the one of best-determined mass proxies, such as YX, i.e. the product of X-ray temperature, and gas mass. The size of the cluster sample used to determine the intrinsic scatter is small, as in previous works proposing low-scatter proxies because very accurate masses are needed to infer very small values of intrinsic scatter. Three-quarters of the studied clusters have lgM ≲ 14 M⊙, which is advantageous from a cosmological perspective because these clusters are far more abundant than more massive clusters. At the difference of other mass proxies such as YX, stellar mass can be determined with survey data up to at least z = 0.9 using upcoming optical near-infrared surveys, such as DES and Euclid, or even with currently available surveys, covering however smaller solid angles. On the other end, the uncertainty about the predicted mass of a single cluster is large, 0.21 to 0.32 dex, depending on cluster richness. This is largely because the proxy itself has ≈ 0.10 dex errors for clusters of lgM ≲ 14 M⊙ mass.
Key words: galaxies: clusters: general / galaxies: stellar content / galaxies: luminosity function, mass function / cosmology: observations / methods: statistical / cosmological parameters
© ESO, 2012