Galaxy Zoo: the large-scale spin statistics of spiral galaxies in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey

Kate Land, Anze Slosar, Chris J. Lintott, Dan Andreescu, Steven P. Bamford, Phil Murray, Bob Nichol, M. Jordan Raddick, Kevin Schawinski, Alexander S. Szalay, Daniel Georg Thomas, Jan Vandenberg

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Abstract

We re-examine the evidence for a violation of large-scale statistical isotropy in the distribution of projected spin vectors of spiral galaxies. We have a sample of ∼37 000 spiral galaxies from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, with their line of sight spin direction confidently classified by members of the public through the online project Galaxy Zoo. After establishing and correcting for a certain level of bias in our handedness results we find the winding sense of the galaxies to be consistent with statistical isotropy. In particular, we find no significant dipole signal, and thus no evidence for overall preferred handedness of the Universe. We compare this result to those of other authors and conclude that these may also be affected and explained by a bias effect.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1686-1692
Number of pages7
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Volume388
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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