The wiggleZ dark energy survey

Michael John Drinkwater, C. H. Blake, K. A. Pimbblet, T. M. Davis, Sarah Brough, Matthew Malcolm Colless, Warrick John Couch, Scott Croom, K. Foster, Karl Glazebrook, Russell J Jurek, B. F. Madore, D. C. Martin, Gregory B Poole, Michael B Pracy, Rob Sharp, D. Woods, Ted Kevin Wyder

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


The Wigglez Dark Energy Survey is an Australian-led project, which will measure some 240,000 spectroscopic redshifts of distant emission-line galaxies with the AAOmega spectrograph of the 3.9-metre Anglo-Australian Telescope. The aim of the project is to measure the scale of baryon acoustic oscillations (BAO) imprinted on the spatial distribution of the galaxies. The BAO scale can be used as a standard ruler to measure cosmic distances. Our BAO measurement will be accurate to 2 per cent and will constrain theories of dark energy. In this article we describe the design and initial results of the project, which started in 2006 and is scheduled to finish observations in 2010. The target galaxies are selected by detecting the Lyman break in ultraviolet photometry from the Galaxy Evolution Explorer satellite. We show that our selection process is very effective in choosing galaxies with strong emission lines and high redshifts; the strong lines allow reliable redshift measurements in relatively short exposures on the telescope.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)106-109
Number of pages4
JournalThe Physicist
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2009
Externally publishedYes

Cite this