We present a comparison of void properties between the standard model of cosmology, $\Lambda$ Cold Dark Matter ($\Lambda$CDM), and two alternative cosmological models with evolving and interacting dark sectors: a quintessence model ($\phi$CDM) and a Coupled Dark Matter-Dark Energy (CDE) model. Using $N$-body simulations of these models, we derive several measures of void statistics and properties, including distributions of void volume, ellipticity, prolateness, and average density. We find that the volume distribution derived from the CDE simulation deviates from the volume distribution derived from the $\Lambda$CDM simulation in the present-day universe, suggesting that the presence of a coupled dark sector could be observable through this statistic. We also find that the distributions of void ellipticity and prolateness are practically indistinguishable among the three models over the redshift range $z=0.0-1.0$, indicating that simple void shape statistics are insensitive to small changes in dark sector physics. Interestingly, we find that the distributions of average void density measured in each of the three simulations are distinct from each other. In particular, voids on average tend to be emptiest under a quintessence model, and densest under the $\Lambda$CDM model. Our results suggest that it is the scalar field present in both alternative models that causes emptier voids to form, while the coupling of the dark sector mitigates this effect by slowing down the evacuation of matter from voids.
E. Adermann, P. Elahi, G. Lewis, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17
Comments: 16 pages, 10 figures, accepted by MNRAS