Large-scale structures of the universe – an amazing science

In today’s video, I’m telling you about the mysterious and fascinating structure of the universe on a grand scale!

For once, while making a final scroll on the script for this video, I deleted entire segments I had already written, telling myself that would make the video too heavy and too disjointed. Here are some appendices and bibliographic references for those who want to dig deeper.

General reviews

Sprengle, Volker, and Carlos S. Frink and Simon DM White. The structure of the universe on a large scale. Nature 440.7088 (2006): 1137–1144.

Angulo, Raoul E., and Oliver Hahn. “Large-Scale Dark Matter Simulations.” Live Reviews in Computational Astrophysics 8.1 (2022): 1.

And Frank van den Bosch Course at Yale University And it’s very complete (thanks to Maxime Trebitsch for this reference!).

on viewing

Geller, Margaret J. , and John B. Hochra. “Mapping the Universe.” Science 246.4932 (1989): 897-903.

Collis, Matthew, et al. Galaxy 2DF Redshift Survey: Spectra and Redshift. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 328.4 (2001): 1039-1063.

Percival, Will J, et al. “The 2dF Galaxy Redshift Survey: Energy Spectrum and Matter Content of the Universe.” Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 327.4 (2001): 1297-1306.

Eisenstein, Daniel J, and others. “SDSS-III: Mass Spectroscopic Surveys of the Distant Universe, the Milky Way, and Extrasolar Planetary Systems”. Astronomical Journal 142.3 (2011): 72.


Arsyth, J. Ambassador, J. Richard Gott III, and Edwin L. Turner. “N-body simulations of galaxy clusters. I- Initial conditions and times of galaxy collapse.” The Astrophysical Journal 228 (1979): 664–683.

Davis, Mark, et al. “The evolution of large-scale structure in a universe dominated by cold dark matter.” The Astrophysical Journal, Part 1 (ISSN 0004-637X), Vol. 292, May 15, 1985, pp. 371–394.

Efstathiou, George et al. “Numerical Techniques for Large N-body Cosmic Simulations.” The Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series 57 (1985): 241–260.

Springle, Volker, et al. Simulations of the formation, evolution, and clustering of galaxies and quasars. Nature 435.7042 (2005): 629–636.

Lyman Alpha Forests

Among the long list of cut topics: I wanted to provide details about Lyman-alpha forests for quasars, only to finally find that they don’t fit well with the overall flow. I think I’ll make a video about quasars someday. But the mechanism is very subtle, as the hydrogen-alpha Lyman line (the transition between levels 1 and 2) is usually at 121 nm. With redshift, it appears to be shifted by a factor of (1 + z).

For example, the line at 121 nm is shifted towards 440 nm.

But the spectrum is riddled with holes because it is absorbed by intermediate clouds at different redshifts. Each hole tells us that there is a mass of hydrogen at a certain distance.

Acoustic oscillations of baryons

I have often had the opportunity to show the energy spectrum of background radiation. The first peak corresponds to the sonic oscillation peaks that depend on the presence of baryonic matter and dark matter.

If we extrapolate this peak fluctuation to the current universe, it should lead to a slight bump in the correlation function of baryonic matter.

An “artistic” and visually exaggerated way of representing this in the galaxy distribution

This acoustic oscillation of baryons has only been demonstrated in the SDSS matter correlation function.

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