Rotation of Galaxies as a Signature of Cosmic Strings in Weak Lensing Surveys
Physical Review Letters
Vector perturbations sourced by topological defects can generate rotations in the lensing of background galaxies. This is a potential smoking gun for the existence of defects since rotation generates a curl-like component in the weak lensing signal which is not generated by standard density perturbations at linear order. This rotation signal is calculated as generated by cosmic strings. Future large scale weak lensing surveys should be able to detect this signal even for string tensions an order of magnitude lower than current constraints.