To appear in "Astrophysical Ages and Time Scales", ASP
Conference Series, Vol. TBD, 2001, eds. T. von Hippel, N. Manset,
Abstract. We give a brief review of recent developments in the study of the large-scale velocity field of galaxies since the international workshop on Cosmic Flows held in July 1999 in Victoria, B.C. Peculiar velocities (PVs) yield a tight and unique constraint on cosmological characteristics, independent of and biasing, such as the cosmological matter density parameter (m) and the convergence of bulk flows on large scales. Significant progress towards incorporating non-linear dynamics and improvements of velocity field reconstruction techniques have led to a rigorous control of errors and much refined cosmic flow analyses. Current investigations favor low-amplitude ( 250 km s-1) bulk flows on the largest scales ( 100 h-1 Mpc) probed reliably by existing redshift-distance surveys, consistent with favored CDM cosmogonies. Tidal field analyses also suggest that the Shapley Concentration (SC), located behind the Great Attractor (GA), might play an important dynamical role, even at the Local Group. Low-amplitude density fluctuations on very large scales generate the overall large-scale streaming motions while massive attractors like the GA, and Perseus-Pisces account for smaller scale motions which are superposed on the large-scale flow. Likelihood analyses of galaxy PVs, in the framework of flat CDM cosmology, now provide tight constraints of m = 0.35 ±l 0.05. A four-fold size size increase of our data base is expected in ~ 4-5 years with the completion of next generation FP/TF surveys and automated supernovae searches within 20,000 km s-1.
Table of Contents
For a postscript version of the article, click here.