Abstract
In the era of precision cosmology, accurate estimation of cosmological parameters is based upon the implicit assumption of the Gaussian nature of Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) radiation. Therefore, an important scientific question to ask is whether the observed CMB map is consistent with Gaussian prediction. In this work, we extend previous studies based on CMB spherical harmonic phases (SHP) to examine the validity of the hypothesis that the temperature field of the CMB is consistent with a Gaussian random field (GRF). The null hypothesis is that the corresponding CMB SHP are independent and identically distributed in
terms of a uniform distribution in the interval [0, 2π] [1,2]. We devise a new model-independent method where we use ordered and non-parametric Rao's statistic, based on sample arc-lengths to comprehensively test uniformity and independence of SHP for a given ℓ mode and independence of nearby ℓ mode SHP. We performed our analysis on the scales limited by spherical harmonic modes ≤ 128, to restrict ourselves to signal-dominated regions. To find the non-uniform or dependent sets of SHP, we calculate the statistic for the data and 10000 Monte Carlo simulated uniformly random sets of SHP and use 0.05 and 0.001 α levels to distinguish between statistically significant and highly significant detections. We first establish the performance of our method using simulated Gaussian, non-Gaussian CMB temperature maps, along with observed non-Gaussian 100 and 143 GHz Planck channel maps. We find that our method, performs efficiently and accurately in detecting phase correlations generated in all of the non-Gaussian simulations and observed foreground contaminated 100 and 143 GHz Planck channel temperature maps. We apply our method on Planck satellite mission's final released CMB temperature anisotropy maps- COMMANDER, SMICA, NILC, and SEVEM along with WMAP 9 year released ILC map. We report that SHP corresponding to some of the m-modes are non-uniform, some of the ℓ mode SHP and neighboring mode pair SHP are correlated in cleaned CMB maps. The detection of non-uniformity or correlation in the SHP indicates the presence of non-Gaussian signals in the foreground minimized CMB maps.