A precise cluster mass profile averaged from the highest-quality lensing data

Keiichi Umetsu, Tom Broadhurst, Adi Zitrin, Elinor Medezinski, Dan Coe, Marc Postman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

115 Scopus citations


We outline our methods for obtaining high-precision mass profiles, combining independent weak-lensing distortion, magnification, and strong-lensing measurements. For massive clusters, the strong- and weak-lensing regimes contribute equal logarithmic coverage of the radial profile. The utility of high-quality data is limited by the cosmic noise from large-scale structure along the line of sight. This noise is overcome when stacking clusters, as too are the effects of cluster asphericity and substructure, permitting a stringent test of theoretical models. We derive a mean radial mass profile of four similar mass clusters of high-quality Hubble Space Telescope and Subaru images, in the range R = 40-2800 kpc h -1, where the inner radial boundary is sufficiently large to avoid smoothing from miscentering effects. The stacked mass profile is detected at 58σ significance over the entire radial range, with the contribution from the cosmic noise included. We show that the projected mass profile has a continuously steepening gradient out to beyond the virial radius, in remarkably good agreement with the standard Navarro-Frenk-White form predicted for the family of cold dark matter (CDM) dominated halos in gravitational equilibrium. The central slope is constrained to lie in the range, -dln ρ/dln r = 0.89+0.27 - 0.39. The mean concentration is c vir = 7.68+0.42 - 0.40 (at M vir = 1.54+0.11 - 0.10 × 1015 M h -1), which is high for relaxed, high-mass clusters, but consistent with ΛCDM when a sizable projection bias estimated from N-body simulations is considered. This possible tension will be more definitively explored with new cluster surveys, such as CLASH, LoCuSS, Subaru Hyper Suprime-Cam, and XXM-XXL, to construct the c vir-M vir relation over a wider mass range.

Original languageEnglish
Article number41
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • cosmology: observations
  • dark matter
  • galaxies: clusters: general
  • gravitational lensing: strong
  • gravitational lensing: weak

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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