We develop a statistical estimator to infer the redshift probability distribution of a photometric sample of galaxies from its angular cross-correlation in redshift bins with an overlapping spectroscopic sample. This estimator is a minimum-variance weighted quadratic function of the data: a quadratic estimator. This extends and modifies the methodology presented by McQuinn & White. The derived source redshift distribution is degenerate with the source galaxy bias, which must be constrained via additional assumptions. We apply this estimator to constrain source galaxy redshift distributions in the Kilo-Degree imaging survey through cross-correlation with the spectroscopic 2-degree Field Lensing Survey, presenting results first as a binned step-wise distribution in the range z < 0.8, and then building a continuous distribution using a Gaussian process model. We demonstrate the robustness of our methodology using mock catalogues constructed from N-body simulations, and comparisons with other techniques for inferring the redshift distribution.
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
- Pub Date:
- March 2017
- cosmology: observation;
- large-scale structure of Universe;
- Astrophysics - Cosmology and Nongalactic Astrophysics
- 17 pages, 10 figures, accepted for publication by MNRAS