The SDSS galaxy angular two-point correlation function

Y. Wang, R. J. Brunner, J. C. Dolence

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We present the galaxy two-point angular correlation function for galaxies selected from the seventh data release of the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). The galaxy sample was selected with r-band apparent magnitudes between 17 and 21, and we measure the correlation function for the full sample as well as for the four magnitude ranges: 17-18, 18-19, 19-20 and 20-21. We update the flag criteria to select a clean galaxy catalogue and detail specific tests that we perform to characterize systematic effects, including the effects of seeing, Galactic extinction and the overall survey uniformity. Notably, we find that optimally we can use observed regions with seeing <1.5 arcsec, and r-band extinction <0.13 mag, smaller than previously published results. Furthermore, we confirm that the uniformity of the SDSS photometry is minimally affected by the stripe geometry.We find that, overall, the two-point angular correlation function can be described by a power law, ω(θ) = Aωθ(1 - γ ) with γ ≃ 1.72, over the range 0°.005- 10°. We also find similar relationships for the four magnitude subsamples, but the amplitude within the same angular interval for the four subsamples is found to decrease with fainter magnitudes, in agreement with previous results. We find that the systematic signals are well below the galaxy angular correlation function for angles less than approximately 5°, which limits the modelling of galaxy angular correlations on larger scales. Finally, we present our custom, highly parallelized two-point correlation code that we used in this analysis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1961-1979
Number of pages19
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2013


  • Cosmology: observations
  • Large-scale structure of universe

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


Dive into the research topics of 'The SDSS galaxy angular two-point correlation function'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this