PSC Camp: Announcement

We are at Capstone Right now!

We have students from PA, CA, FL, WI, MD, DC, and WV!  Today is seminar day–we’re hearing some lectures from grad students and  professors this morn.  This afternoon will be our poster session.

Teachers and students who qualify for capstone also qualify for camp.  Have you applied?  If not, even though the deadline is past, you can apply this week and we will consider your application.



Announcing Another Data and Test Help Marathon– May 1!

Let’s get you ready for Capstone at WVU, and Pulsar Camp this summer!  We’ll be online May 1 from 3:00 PM Eastern till about 8:00 PM – Join us for all or part.  We will use our Zoom link to connect.

  1. If you’re having trouble getting through the tests, we’ll help you!  Guaranteed that you will be certified by the end of the session.
  2.  If you want to get your 50 data sets under your belt with some good company to answer your questions, join us1  You can get a lot done in a short amount of time with some friends to help along the way.
  3. Win goofy prizes!

Data Analysis Marathon

Let’s get you qualified for Capstone AND PSC Camp and help our astronomers out at the same time! We’re gonna be on Zoom tomorrow, April 10 from 3:00-8:00 PM Eastern! If you have not yet passed the pulsar tests, join us. We’ll help you! IF you need to get some data scored, join us! We can answer your questions. Did I mention there will be prizes? Did I mention a wind-up Chewbacca? Hope to see you tomorrow!

PSC Training Workshop News

Teachers AND students who are joining us for our certification workshop this month:
1. We held a Teacher Informational meeting last week, which has been posted. If you didn’t make that meeting, check it out.
2. Tomorrow, we will host an optional  technical check in at 7 PM using Zoom. Look for an email telling you how to connect. We will show you around the two websites we will be using, and the forum where you will post homework, and have discussions with each other and the PSC astronomers. We will meet by Zoom every week during the workshop.
3. By the end of this week we will post week one materials – a few short intro videos to watch, and a homework assignment. Our official FIRST workshop meeting will be Thursday, February 15 at 7 PM using Zoom. We would like to have a discussion about the week one videos and homework – so do week one work BEFORE the meeting on the 15th.  then we repeat this structure every week.  If you miss a week, just keep up with the work and post to the forum, we will always be there and ready to help!

Special PSC lecture on Gravitational waves on Jan 18, 2018

Happy new year! We are so excited to begin another year of discovery with you all. We would like to kick off the year with a guest lecture on the recent discoveries of gravitational waves by LIGO by WVU graduate student Belinda Cheeseboro. Belinda has been an author on the recent discovery papers and will tell you all you need to know about the greatest discovery of this century so far! She will talk for about 20-25 minutes, followed by time for questions.
Please join us on Thursday, January 18, 2018 at 7 pm EST at

The PSC is seeking teachers and students!

The Pulsar Search Collaboratory is starting a new round of training for teachers and students in February!! Learn about pulsars from renowned radio astronomers Maura McLaughlin and Duncan Lorimer, and get your hands on some data! Learn more about the program and join us! Our next online training will begin February 1, 2018 with an online meeting with educators, followed by six training modules. This session includes weekly webchats with the astronomers! Don’t miss this!

College Credit Available to High School Students

Active PSC student members may sign up for very inexpensive college credits from WVU!  You have to do more work than just qualifying for Capstone or PSC Camp, but it is totally worth it.  If you are interested you can take a look at the PSC_syllabus.2018

If you are interested in enrolling, please email Maura McLaughlin ( and also apply online at and complete steps 1 (the online app) and Step 2 (an enrollment form which has to be printed and signed off by a school guidance counselor).

You must have a GPA of at least 3.0 and this form also must be signed by your parents. The course CRN is 17313.

You will be registered once you’ve completed the application.  The cost is $75/credit for both in state and out of state.  This is a really good deal and far cheaper than the cost-per-credit you’d pay as an undergraduate!

Terzan 5– the pulsar gift that keeps on giving

Globular clusters are so cool.  They are really old… globular clusters contain the oldest of stars, and date back to the beginning of our Milky Way, and may be a good place to look for alien civilizations!  And they are dense- hosting a million stars in a volume only 100 light years across. It is this fact that interests astronomers using pulsars as a way to probe the inner structure and origin of these ancient relics.t5pulsars_side

Globular cluster Terzan 5 is home to 37 known pulsars! Many of these are rapidly spinning pulsars known as millisecond pulsars. Astronomers have bean measuring Terzan 5’s uneven tug of gravity on these pulsars to determine the internal structure of the cluster.

Read more here!