Cosmic shear with Einstein rings

Simon Birrer, Alexandre Refregier, Adam Amara

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We explore a new technique to measure cosmic shear using Einstein rings. In Birrer et al., we showed that the detailed modeling of Einstein rings can be used to measure external shear to high precision. In this Letter, we explore how a collection of Einstein rings can be used as a statistical probe of cosmic shear. We present a forecast of the cosmic shear information available in Einstein rings for different strong lensing survey configurations. We find that, assuming that the number density of Einstein rings in the COSMOS survey is representative, future strong lensing surveys should have a cosmological precision comparable to the current ground-based weak lensing surveys. We discuss how this technique is complementary to the standard cosmic shear analyses since it is sensitive to different systematics and can be used for cross-calibration.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL14
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jan 2018


  • cosmology: observations
  • gravitational lensing: strong
  • gravitational lensing: weak
  • large-scale structure of universe


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