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The LSC Algorithm Library Suite (LALSuite) is comprised of various gravitational wave data analysis routines written in C following the ISO/IEC 9899:1999 standard, more commonly referred to as C99.


LALSuite is comprised of the following components:
  • LAL: Core gravitational wave analysis routines
  • LALFrame: LAL wrapping of the LIGO/Virgo Frame library
  • LALMetaIO: LAL wrapping of the MetaIO LIGO_LW XML library
  • LALXML: LAL wrapping of the libxml2 XML library, currently unused
  • LALSimulation: LAL routines for gravitational waveform and noise generation
  • LALBurst: LAL routines for burst gravitational wave data analysis
  • LALDetChar: LAL routines for detector characterisation
  • LALInspiral: LAL routines for inspiral and ringdown CBC gravitational wave data analysis
  • LALPulsar: LAL routines for pulsar and continuous wave gravitational wave data analysis
  • LALInference: LAL routines for Bayesian inference data analysis
  • LALStochastic: LAL routines for stochastic background gravitational wave data analysis
  • LALApps: Collection of gravitational wave data analysis codes and pipelines utilising the LAL libraries

The components of LALSuite can be obtained as a RPMs, Debs, tarball, or directly from the Git development repository. Developers should obtain LALSuite from Git.

Project Librarian

Adam Mercer. Email: adam.mercer at


Complete instructions for building LALSuite can be found here.

The documentation for all LALSuite components is generated using Doxygen. The most recent LALSuite documentation from the nightly build can be found here.

The LAL Specification and Style Guide document (commonly known as the LAL Spec) contains the software specifications that code written for LALSuite should conform to. The most recent version of the LAL Spec can be found here.


LALSuite-6.46 was released on 16 March 2017, and is comprised of: Previous releases can be found in the following directory.

Git Repository

The LALSuite sources are located in the LALSuite Git repository. See the following instructions on how to get started. You may also browse the LALSuite Git repository using the cgit web interface.

Bug Reporting

The LALSuite bug reporting system can be found here. You will need a LIGO.ORG username and password. Some useful tips and tricks can be found here.

Before you file a ticket, please read and search through the list of current and previous issues to determine if your bug has already been reported. If it has not, please report the issue under the relevant subproject (e.g. CBC, CW), giving as much detail as possible.

If an issue already exists and has not been fixed, add any additional information to the existing report. If your bug exists and has been fixed, upgrade to the version detailed in the issue to confirm if it has been fixed correctly. If it was not, please reopen the issue.

Nightly Build

LALSuite is built nightly on a variety of platforms and using a variety of different compilers. Further information can be found here.

Mailing Lists

There are several mailing lists related to LALSuite development: Developers should subscribe to the LAL Discuss and DASWG mailing lists as important development information is regularly posted and discussed on these lists.


The required software dependencies depend on which packages you wish to install, the core dependencies are:
  • GSL - The GNU Scientific Library.
  • FFTW - The Fastest Fourier Transform in the West.
Other dependencies that are needed for some of the sub packages are:
  • !FrameL- LIGO/Virgo Frame library (needed for LALFrame)
  • !MetaIO - LIGO_LW XML library (needed for LALMetaIO?, LALBurst, LALInspiral, and LALStochastic)
  • libxml2 - XML parsing library (needed for LALXML)
Instructions for building these software packages from source code can be found here. There also may be prebuilt binaries available for your platform, for more details please see the LSCSoft Repository pages here.

Development Roadmap

This is out of date and will be updated shortly.


  • Finish conversion of LALDoc documentation to doxygen
  • Transition to C99 complex type
  • Update of autotools build system to require specific versions, remove hacks that worked round bugs in earlier versions
  • correct incremental rebuilds (i.e. edit a single file and rebuild correctly without "make clean")


  • Enable SWIG bindings by default


  • SWIG bindings for all libraries
  • LALDetChar


  • Transition to libxml2 for XML parsing
  • Use FrameCPP? for Frame I/O
  • Investigate non-recursive make

-- PatrickBrady? - 04 Aug 2015
Topic revision: r20 - 16 Mar 2017, AdamMercer

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