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Abstract:Rapid and accurate evaluation of the nonlinear matter power spectrum, $P(k)$, as a function of cosmological parameters and redshift is of fundamental importance in cosmology. Analytic approximations provide an interpretable solution, yet current approximations are neither fast nor accurate relative to black-box numerical emulators. We use symbolic regression to obtain simple analytic approximations to the nonlinear scale, $k_\sigma$, the effective spectral index, $n_{\rm eff}$, and the curvature, $C$, which are required for the halofit model. We then re-optimise the coefficients of halofit to fit a wide range of cosmologies and redshifts. We then again exploit symbolic regression to explore the space of analytic expressions to fit the residuals between $P(k)$ and the optimised predictions of halofit. All methods are validated against $N$-body simulations. Our symbolic expressions for $k_\sigma$, $n_{\rm eff}$ and $C$ have root mean squared fractional errors of 0.8%, 0.2% and 0.3%, respectively, for redshifts below 3 and a wide range of cosmologies. The re-optimised halofit parameters reduce the root mean squared fractional error from 3% to below 2% for wavenumbers $k=9\times10^{-3}-9 \, h{\rm Mpc^{-1}}$. We introduce syren-halofit (symbolic-regression-enhanced halofit), an extension to halofit containing a short symbolic correction which improves this error to 1%. Our method is 2350 and 3170 times faster than current halofit and hmcode implementations, respectively, and 2680 and 64 times faster than EuclidEmulator2 (which requires running class) and the BACCO emulator. We obtain comparable accuracy to EuclidEmulator2 and the BACCO emulator when tested on $N$-body simulations. Our work greatly increases the speed and accuracy of symbolic approximations to $P(k)$, making them significantly faster than their numerical counterparts without loss of accuracy.

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Authors:Deaglan J. Bartlett, Lukas Kammerer, Gabriel Kronberger, Harry Desmond, Pedro G. Ferreira, Benjamin D. Wandelt, Bogdan Burlacu, David Alonso, Matteo Zennaro

Abstract:Computing the matter power spectrum, $P(k)$, as a function of cosmological parameters can be prohibitively slow in cosmological analyses, hence emulating this calculation is desirable. Previous analytic approximations are insufficiently accurate for modern applications, so black-box, uninterpretable emulators are often used. We utilise an efficient genetic programming based symbolic regression framework to explore the space of potential mathematical expressions which can approximate the power spectrum and $\sigma_8$. We learn the ratio between an existing low-accuracy fitting function for $P(k)$ and that obtained by solving the Boltzmann equations and thus still incorporate the physics which motivated this earlier approximation. We obtain an analytic approximation to the linear power spectrum with a root mean squared fractional error of 0.2% between $k = 9\times10^{-3} - 9 \, h{\rm \, Mpc^{-1}}$ and across a wide range of cosmological parameters, and we provide physical interpretations for various terms in the expression. We also provide a simple analytic approximation for $\sigma_8$ with a similar accuracy, with a root mean squared fractional error of just 0.4% when evaluated across the same range of cosmologies. This function is easily invertible to obtain $A_{\rm s}$ as a function of $\sigma_8$ and the other cosmological parameters, if preferred. It is possible to obtain symbolic approximations to a seemingly complex function at a precision required for current and future cosmological analyses without resorting to deep-learning techniques, thus avoiding their black-box nature and large number of parameters. Our emulator will be usable long after the codes on which numerical approximations are built become outdated.

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