The WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey: measuring the cosmic growth rate with the two-point galaxy correlation function
The growth history of large-scale structure in the Universe is a powerful probe of the cosmological model, including the nature of dark energy. We study the growth rate of cosmic structure to redshift $z = 0.9$ using more than $162,000$ galaxy redshifts from the WiggleZ Dark Energy Survey. We divide the data into four redshift slices with effective redshifts $z = [0.2,0.4,0.6,0.76]$ and in each of the samples measure and model the 2-point galaxy correlation function in parallel and transverse directions to the line-of-sight. After simultaneously fitting for the galaxy bias factor we recover values for the cosmic growth rate which are consistent with our assumed $Λ$CDM input cosmological model, with an accuracy of around 20% in each redshift slice. We investigate the sensitivity of our results to the details of the assumed model and the range of physical scales fitted, making close comparison with a set of N-body simulations for calibration. Our measurements are consistent with an independent power-spectrum analysis of a similar dataset, demonstrating that the results are not driven by systematic errors. We determine the pairwise velocity dispersion of the sample in a non-parametric manner, showing that it systematically increases with decreasing redshift, and investigate the Alcock-Paczynski effects of changing the assumed fiducial model on the results. Our techniques should prove useful for current and future galaxy surveys mapping the growth rate of structure using the 2-dimensional correlation function.