One of the main science goals of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) is to uncover the nature of cosmic acceleration. In the base analysis, possible deviations from the Lambda-Cold-Dark-Matter ($\Lambda$CDM) background evolution will be probed by fitting a $w(z)$CDM model, which allows for a redshift-dependent dark energy equation of state with $w(z)$, within general relativity (GR). A rich array of other phenomena can arise due to deviations from the standard $\Lambda$CDM+GR model though, including modifications to the growth rate of structure and lensing, and novel screening effects on non-linear scales. Concrete physical models are needed to provide consistent predictions for these (potentially small) effects, to give us the best chance of detecting them and separating them from astrophysical systematics. A complex plethora of possible models has been constructed over the past few decades, with none emerging as a particular favorite. This document prioritizes a subset of these models along with rationales for further study and inclusion into the LSST Dark Energy Science Collaboration (DESC) data analysis pipelines, based on their observational viability, theoretical plausibility, and level of theoretical development. We provide references and theoretical expressions to aid the integration of these models into DESC software and simulations, and give justifications for why other models were not prioritized. While DESC efforts are free to pursue other models, we provide here guidelines on which theories appear to have higher priority for collaboration efforts due to their perceived promise and greater instructional value.
- Pub Date:
- May 2019
- Astrophysics - Cosmology and Nongalactic Astrophysics;
- General Relativity and Quantum Cosmology
- 61 pages. Some acknowledgments and references added. This is version-1.1 of an internal collaboration document of LSST-DESC that is being made public and is not planned for submission to a journal