Frequently Asked Questions

Questions for the wider Astronomical community/General Public:

  1. What is NANOGrav?
    • The North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves (NANOGrav) is a collaboration of scientists in the United States and Canada working to detect low-frequency gravitational waves and characterize the low-frequency universe in order to probe galaxy evolution over cosmic time.
  2. What telescopes does NANOGrav use?
  3. How many pulsars does NANOGrav observe and how are they chosen?
    • Time number grows over time; as of January 2017, 56 pulsars were observed: 35 at Arecibo, 23 at the GBT, with 2 pulsars observed at both. We observe millisecond pulsars (generally periods under 10 millisecond) from which we can achieve high timing precision (1 microsecond or better).
  4. How do I get access to the latest timing data?
  5. How does NANOGrav relate to other pulsar timing array efforts?

Questions for new NANOGrav members:

  1. When are general meetings?
    • There are twice-annual in-person Collaboration meetings, usually in October/November and March/April. Upcoming meetings are listed at: There are also monthly all-NANOGrav telecons
  2. What mailing lists are there? How do I sign up?
  3. How do I get access to the wiki?
  4. What are the publication rules?
  5. What are the rules about giving talks?
  6. How do I become an Associate member?
    • The membership policy is set out at: Membership in NANOGrav is open to any researcher who is willing to contribute to NANOGrav's goals of detecting and studying gravitational waves via pulsar timing. We welcome applications for Associate Membership from people who have not yet participated in NANOGrav, or who may be working in a related field. After filling out this form, their application will be presented to the full collaboration. If there are no objections by a Full member, the application is accepted.
  7. How do I become a Full member?
    • The membership policy is set out at: Full membership carries additional responsibilities and duties, including annual reviews of contributions. A researcher must have been an Associate member for at least 12 months prior to application.
  8. Who is on the Management Team?
  9. What are the working groups? How do I join? When are their meetings?
    • The working group chairs are listed at: All NANOGrav associate and full members are welcome to attend any working group telecon. Meeting times are listed on the NANOGrav google calendar.
  10. How do I join a telecon?
    • We use webex for telecons. The instructions are sent out with telecon agendas. You may also phone into telecons.
  11. I have a question that isn’t answered here. How can I get it added?
    • Please email the NANOGrav Management Team at nano-mt at