TDCOSMO. IV. Hierarchical timedelay cosmography  joint inference of the Hubble constant and galaxy density profiles
Abstract
The H0LiCOW collaboration inferred via strong gravitational lensing time delays a Hubble constant value of H_{0} = 73.3_{1.8}^{+1.7} km s^{1} Mpc^{1}, describing deflector mass density profiles by either a powerlaw or stars (constant masstolight ratio) plus standard dark matter halos. The masssheet transform (MST) that leaves the lensing observables unchanged is considered the dominant source of residual uncertainty in H_{0}. We quantify any potential effect of the MST with a flexible family of mass models, which directly encodes it, and they are hence maximally degenerate with H_{0}. Our calculation is based on a new hierarchical Bayesian approach in which the MST is only constrained by stellar kinematics. The approach is validated on mock lenses, which are generated from hydrodynamic simulations. We first applied the inference to the TDCOSMO sample of seven lenses, six of which are from H0LiCOW, and measured H_{0} = 74.5_{6.1}^{+5.6} km s^{1} Mpc^{1}. Secondly, in order to further constrain the deflector mass density profiles, we added imaging and spectroscopy for a set of 33 strong gravitational lenses from the Sloan Lens ACS (SLACS) sample. For nine of the 33 SLAC lenses, we used resolved kinematics to constrain the stellar anisotropy. From the joint hierarchical analysis of the TDCOSMO+SLACS sample, we measured H_{0} = 67.4_{3.2}^{+4.1} km s^{1} Mpc^{1}. This measurement assumes that the TDCOSMO and SLACS galaxies are drawn from the same parent population. The blind H0LiCOW, TDCOSMOonly and TDCOSMO+SLACS analyses are in mutual statistical agreement. The TDCOSMO+SLACS analysis prefers marginally shallower mass profiles than H0LiCOW or TDCOSMOonly. Without relying on the form of the mass density profile used by H0LiCOW, we achieve a ∼5% measurement of H_{0}. While our new hierarchical analysis does not statistically invalidate the mass profile assumptions by H0LiCOW  and thus the H_{0} measurement relying on them  it demonstrates the importance of understanding the mass density profile of elliptical galaxies. The uncertainties on H_{0} derived in this paper can be reduced by physical or observational priors on the form of the mass profile, or by additional data.
ARRAY(0x2329100)
 Publication:

Astronomy and Astrophysics
 Pub Date:
 November 2020
 DOI:
 10.1051/00046361/202038861
 arXiv:
 arXiv:2007.02941
 Bibcode:
 2020A&A...643A.165B
 Keywords:

 gravitational lensing: strong;
 galaxies: general;
 galaxies: kinematics and dynamics;
 distance scale;
 cosmological parameters;
 cosmology: observations;
 Astrophysics  Cosmology and Nongalactic Astrophysics;
 Astrophysics  Astrophysics of Galaxies
 EPrint:
 accepted by A&