Ohio State plays crucial role in new Dark Energy Survey results

June 10, 2021

Ohio State plays crucial role in new Dark Energy Survey results

Cerro Tololo, Blanco Telescope dome — one of the telescopes used in the Dark Energy Survey — and star trails in Chile (Reidar Hahn, Fermilab)

Ohio State’s Center for Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics (CCAPP) is currently home to three postdoctoral fellows who were involved heavily in the DES project — Ami ChoiJack Elvin-Poole and Anna Porredon. Professor in the Department of Physics Klaus Honscheid helped develop the instrument itself more than a decade ago and has seen it through multiple generations of graduate students, doctoral students and fellows. Besides Ohio State’s three current fellows working on DES, 10 other contributors to the project at universities around the world are alumni of CCAPP.

“In some ways this is the grandest of Klaus’ achievements so far,” said David Weinberg, Distinguished University Professor in the Department of Astronomy. “We have this great experience of bringing in these super-talented postdocs, they all overlap so they each learn from each other, and then they go on to play crucial roles in making the whole analysis happen. It’s really been great to see.”

Other CCAPP alumni involved in the DES project are Jonathan Blazek, Tim Eifler, Eric Huff, Niall MacCrann, Peter Melchior, Ashley Ross, Eduardo Rozo, Michael Troxel and Hao-Yi Wu and former CCAPP graduate students Eric Suchyta and Sujeong Lee.

“With the large Ohio State involvement, it really is like a family affair,” Honscheid said.

Over the course of six years, DES surveyed 5,000 square degrees — almost one-eighth of the entire sky — in 758 nights of observation. The results announced last week draw on data from the first three years — 226 million galaxies observed over 345 nights — to create the largest and most precise maps yet of the distribution of galaxies in the universe at relatively recent epochs.

Read More, OSU News

Watch Fermilab's YouTube Video on DES: "Exploring 7 billion light years of space with the Dark Energy Survey"