First measurement of gravitational lensing by cosmic voids in SDSS

Peter Melchior, P. M. Sutter, Erin S. Sheldon, Elisabeth Krause, Benjamin D. Wandelt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

90 Scopus citations


We report the first measurement of the diminutive lensing signal arising from matter underdensities associated with cosmic voids. While undetectable individually, by stacking the weak gravitational shear estimates around 901 voids detected in Sloan Digital Sky Survey DR7 by Sutter et al., we find substantial evidence for a depression of the lensing signal compared to the cosmic mean. This depression is most pronounced at the void radius, in agreement with analytical models of void matter profiles. Even with the largest void sample and imaging survey available today, we cannot put useful constraints on the radial dark matter void profile. We invite independent investigations of our findings by releasing data and analysis code to the public at.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2922-2927
Number of pages6
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jun 2014
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


  • Cosmology: observations
  • Gravitational lensing: weak


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