Microwave background fluctuations due to the Sunyaev-Zel'dovich effect in pancakes

M. U. SubbaRao, A. S. Szalay, R. K. Schaefer, S. Gulkis, P. Von Gronefeld

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We calculate distortions in the microwave background radiation from the Sunyaev-Zel'dovich effect, produced by hot gas in large (∼ 100 Mpc) pancakes. The large-scale distribution of the pancakes is taken to be that of a Voronoi foam. Fluctuations for this scenario are estimated to be on the order of ΔT/T 7sim; 10-5. Using computer simulations, we produce several 32° x 32° images with 0°.25 resolution. These images show characteristic linear features produced when a pancake is viewed nearly edge-on. By calculating the two-point and the degenerate three-point correlation functions, we are able to statistically detect such non-Gaussian features even in the presence of a relatively large amount of Gaussian noise. The degenerate three-point correlation function is found to be particularly useful since it is insensitive to correlated Gaussian noise. We also smooth our data over a 7° FWHM Gaussian window to simulate the COBE observations. We find that under such low-resolution conditions, the features are highly suppressed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)474-483
Number of pages10
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 10 1994


  • Cosmic microwave background
  • Cosmology: theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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