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ISSUE 15 - July 2014

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City–City Correlations to Introduce Galaxy–Galaxy Correlations (page 31)
Daniel M. Smith, Jr.

Large-scale Structure, Cosmology Lab, Galaxy Distribution, Baryon Acoustic Oscillation, Galaxy–galaxy Correlation Function


The large-scale structure of the Universe, vividly displayed by the spatial distribution of galaxies, is characterised quanti- tatively by the two-point galaxy–galaxy correlation function. But the meaning of the correlation function is somewhat abstract because it does not have a ready analogy. This work computes the two-dimensional, two-point city–city correlation function for three populous regions of the United States, demonstrating that the city–city correlation function is analogous to the galaxy–galaxy correlation function determined from Sloan Digital Sky Survey data. City radii are analogous to galaxy cluster radii, and city-to-city distances are analogous to distances between galaxy clusters. Part of this work has been adapted for a lab suitable for non-experts.

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