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Light cone effect on the reionization 21-cm signal - II. Evolution, anisotropies and observational implications

Abstract : Measurements of the H I 21-cm power spectra from the reionization epoch will be influenced by the evolution of the signal along the line-of-sight direction of any observed volume. We use numerical as well as seminumerical simulations of reionization in a cubic volume of 607 Mpc across to study this so-called light-cone effect on the H I 21-cm power spectrum. We find that the light-cone effect has the largest impact at two different stages of reionization: one when reionization is ∼20 per cent and other when it is ∼80 per cent completed. We find a factor of ∼4 amplification of the power spectrum at the largest scale available in our simulations. We do not find any significant anisotropy in the 21-cm power spectrum due to the light-cone effect. We argue that for the power spectrum to become anisotropic, the light-cone effect would have to make the ionized bubbles significantly elongated or compressed along the line of sight, which would require extreme reionization scenarios. We also calculate the two-point correlation functions parallel and perpendicular to the line of sight and find them to differ. Finally, we calculate an optimum frequency bandwidth below which the light-cone effect can be neglected when extracting power spectra from observations. We find that if one is willing to accept a 10 per cent error due to the light-cone effect, the optimum frequency bandwidth for k = 0.056 Mpc-1 is ∼7.5 MHz. For k = 0.15 and 0.41 Mpc-1, the optimum bandwidth is ∼11 and ∼16 MHz, respectively.
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Submitted on : Monday, April 25, 2022 - 10:02:44 AM
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Kanan K. Datta, Hannes Jensen, Suman Majumdar, Garrelt Mellema, Ilian T. Iliev, et al.. Light cone effect on the reionization 21-cm signal - II. Evolution, anisotropies and observational implications. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 2014, 442, pp.1491-1506. ⟨10.1093/mnras/stu927⟩. ⟨insu-03645338⟩

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