SIGPROC is a package designed to standardize the initial analysis of
the many types of fast-sampled pulsar data. Currently recognized
machines are the Wide Band Arecibo Pulsar Processor (WAPP), the Penn
State Pulsar Machine (PSPM), the Arecibo Observatory Fourier Transform
Machine (AOFTM), the Berkeley Pulsar Processors (BPP), the
Parkes/Jodrell 1-bit filterbanks (SCAMP) and the filterbank at the
Ooty radio telescope (OOTY). The SIGPROC tools should help users look
at their data quickly, without the need to write (yet) another routine
to read data or worry about big/little endian compatibility (byte
swapping is handled automatically).
filterbank - converts raw telescope data
into "filterbank" format: a 2D
stream of radio frequency channels versus time.
dedisperse - corrects filterbank data for
interstellar medium propagation to form a "dedispersed"
fold - folds time series or filterbank data modulo a fixed
or predicted pulse period to produce pulse profiles.
seek - searches dedispersed time series for periodic signals
and/or individual pulses.
fake - create fake datasets in filterbank format.
SIGPROC has been used by numerous pulsar astronomers since 2001.
Some of its highlights have been:
Discovery of binary millisecond pulsars in 47 Tucanae
Investigation of interstellar scattering
Discovery of the companion in the double pulsar system
High-resolution single pulse and scintillation studies of the double pulsar
Discovery of radio pulsations from the supernova remnant 3C58
Timing a new population of radio transient sources
Documentation and example usage
Each program is driven by command-line switches
and makes use of the Unix stdin/stdout and pipe feature so that
a pipeline can be built by stringing programs together, e.g.
will convert a raw datafile ("0329+54.bcpm" in this case) into
filterbank format, dedisperse the data (at a dispersion measure
equal to 26.833 in this case) and then fold it producing an ASCII
profile with 256 phase bins.
On-line help can be found by typing the name of each program
followed by "help". Detailed information and example usage can
be found here.
Download the latest version of SIGPROC here and unpack the gzip-compressed tar file via the command:
gunzip -c sigproc-4.3.tar.gz | tar xvf -
This will place the source code into a sigproc-4.3 directory. Go into this directory and run the configuration script:
and specify the location of the directory for the executable files when prompted. Once the script has run, type "make" and hopefully the compilation will
Many thanks go to a number of people who have contributed to or made
suggestions on functionality to SIGPROC over the years:
This page was last updated on June 2, 2008 by dunc_lorimer at sourceforge dot