Massive neutrinos leave fingerprints on cosmic voids

Christina D. Kreisch, Alice Pisani, Carmelita Carbone, Jia Liu, Adam J. Hawken, Elena Massara, David N. Spergel, Benjamin D. Wandelt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


Do void statistics contain information beyond the tracer 2-point correlation function? Yes! As we vary the sum of the neutrino masses, we find void statistics contain information absent when using just tracer 2-point statistics. Massive neutrinos uniquely affect cosmic voids. We explore their impact on void clustering using both the DEMNUni and MassiveNuS simulations. For voids, neutrino effects depend on the observed void tracers. As the neutrino mass increases, the number of small voids traced by cold dark matter particles increases and the number of large voids decreases. Surprisingly, when massive, highly biased, haloes are used as tracers, we find the opposite effect. The scale at which voids cluster, as well as the void correlation, is similarly sensitive to the sum of neutrino masses and the tracers. This scale-dependent trend is not due to simulation volume or halo density. The interplay of these signatures in the void abundance and clustering leaves a distinct fingerprint that could be detected with observations and potentially help break degeneracies between different cosmological parameters. This paper paves the way to exploit cosmic voids in future surveys to constrain the mass of neutrinos.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4413-4426
Number of pages14
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 21 2019
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


  • Cosmological parameters
  • Cosmology: theory
  • Large-scale structure of Universe


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