Welcome to the Fermi GBM Data Tools documentation!


Hello, I’m Fermi. Pleased to meet you!

The Fermi GBM Data Tools is an Application Programming Interface (API) for GBM data. The fundamental purpose of the Data Tools is to allow general users to incorporate GBM analysis into their scripts and workflows without having to sweat very many details. To this end, the Data Tools have a fairly high-level API layer allowing a user to read, reduce, and visualize GBM data with only a few lines of code. For expert users, and users who want fine control over various aspects of their analysis, the Data Tools exposes a lower-level API layer, which can also be used to generalize the GBM Data Tools to data from other like instruments.


The Data Tools are designed with generalization in mind. Underlying the science data interfaces are primitive data types that allow similar data to be used with the Data Tools, even if the exact data file definitions are different from the GBM file definitions. The inheritance structure of the Data Tools allows generalization of many of the Data Tools functionality to data from other instruments, once the interface to those data files are defined.

The Data Tools are designed with various aspects to be plugin-like. For example, The Data Tools provides a binning module that contains a number of binning algorithms for pre-binned and unbinned data. A user is not restricted to using only the pre-packaged binning algorithms provided, but can write their own algorithms by following the instructions on the required inputs and outputs expected. The user-defined algorithms can then be used seamlessly with the Data Tools. The same architecture can be leveraged to allow for user-defined background estimation algorithms, spectral models/functions, and spectral fitting algorithms.


We are working to provide the GBM Data Tools via the NASA GitHub to allow for pull and merge requests from the community. Planned features in an upcoming release include a response generator and the GBM localization algorithms used for on-board GRB triggers.

Funding through the NASA Astrophysics Data Analysis Program (ADAP) will allow development of a generalized set of tools to expand these data tools to other legacy missions with similar data, including BATSE, HETE-2, Suzaku, and others. Planned work on these Gamma-ray Data Tools, of which the GBM Data Tools will form a core component, will commence in 2021.


If you use the GBM Data Tools in your research and publications, we would definitely appreciate an appropriate acknowledgment and citation! We suggest the following BibTex:

      author = {Adam Goldstein and William H. Cleveland and Daniel Kocevski},
      title = {Fermi GBM Data Tools: v1.1.1},
      year = 2022,
      url = {https://fermi.gsfc.nasa.gov/ssc/data/analysis/gbm}

Additional Resources

The Fermi Science Support Center is a fantastic resource for all things Fermi. Specifically, for GBM, a lot of useful information about the data products can be found here. For questions, bug reports, and comments, please visit the Fermi Help Desk.


The Fermi GBM Data Tools were partially funded by the Fermi Guest Investigator program (NNH18ZDA001N). Special appreciation for the volunteer testers.

Indices and tables