Multiple peaks in the angular power spectrum of the cosmic microwave background: Significance and consequences for cosmology

P. De Bernardis, P. A.R. Ade, J. J. Bock, J. R. Bond, J. Borrill, A. Boscaleri, K. Coble, C. R. Contaldi, B. P. Crill, G. De Troia, P. Farese, K. Ganga, M. Giacometti, E. Hivon, V. V. Hristov, A. Iacoangeli, A. H. Jaffe, W. C. Jones, A. E. Lange, L. MartinisS. Masi, P. Mason, P. D. Mauskopf, A. Melchiorri, T. Montroy, C. B. Netterfield, E. Pascale, F. Piacentini, D. Pogosyan, G. Polenta, F. Pongetti, S. Prunet, G. Romeo, J. E. Ruhl, F. Scaramuzzi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

269 Scopus citations


Three peaks and two dips have been detected in the power spectrum of the cosmic microwave background by the BOOMERANG experiment, at l = (213 -13+10), (541-32+20), (845 -25+12) and l = (416-12+22), (750-750+20), respectively. Using model-independent analyses, we find that all five features are statistically significant, and we measure their location and amplitude. These are consistent with the adiabatic inflationary model. We also calculate the mean and variance of the peak and dip locations and amplitudes in a large seven-dimensional parameter space of such models, which gives good agreement with the model-independent estimates. We forecast where the next few peaks and dips should be found if the basic paradigm is correct. We test the robustness of our results by comparing Bayesian marginalization techniques on this space with likelihood maximization techniques applied to a second seven-dimensional cosmological parameter space, using an independent computational pipeline, and find excellent agreement: Ω02tot=-0.06+0.05 versus 1.04 ± 0.05, Ωbh2 = 0.022-0.003 +0.004 versus 0.019-0.004+0.005 and n s = 0.96-0.08+0.09 versus 0.90 ± 0.08. The determination of the best fit by the maximization procedure effectively ignores nonzero optical depth of reionization τc > 0, and the difference in primordial spectral index ns between the two methods is thus a consequence of the strong correlation of ns with the τc.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)559-566
Number of pages8
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2 I
StatePublished - Jan 10 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Cosmic microwave background
  • Cosmological parameters
  • Cosmology: observations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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