Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

World temperature records available via Google Earth

Date:
February 5, 2014
Source:
University of East Anglia
Summary:
Climate researchers have made the world's temperature records available via Google Earth. The new Google Earth format allows users to scroll around the world, zoom in on 6,000 weather stations, and view monthly, seasonal and annual temperature data more easily than ever before. The move is part of an ongoing effort to make data about past climate and climate change as accessible and transparent as possible.

Climate researchers at the University of East Anglia have made the world's temperature records available via Google Earth.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of East Anglia

Climate researchers at the University of East Anglia have made the world's temperature records available via Google Earth.

The Climatic Research Unit Temperature Version 4 (CRUTEM4) land-surface air temperature dataset is one of the most widely used records of the climate system.

The new Google Earth format allows users to scroll around the world, zoom in on 6,000 weather stations, and view monthly, seasonal and annual temperature data more easily than ever before.

Users can drill down to see some 20,000 graphs -- some of which show temperature records dating back to 1850.

The move is part of an ongoing effort to make data about past climate and climate change as accessible and transparent as possible.

Dr Tim Osborn from UEA's Climatic Research Unit said: "The beauty of using Google Earth is that you can instantly see where the weather stations are, zoom in on specific countries, and see station datasets much more clearly.

"The data itself comes from the latest CRUTEM4 figures, which have been freely available on our website and via the Met Office. But we wanted to make this key temperature dataset as interactive and user-friendly as possible."

The Google Earth interface shows how the globe has been split into 5 latitude and longitude grid boxes. The boxes are about 550km wide along the Equator, narrowing towards the North and South poles. This red and green checkerboard covers most of Earth and indicates areas of land where station data are available. Clicking on a grid box reveals the area's annual temperatures, as well as links to more detailed downloadable station data.

But while the new initiative does allow greater accessibility, the research team do expect to find errors.

Dr Osborn said: "This dataset combines monthly records from 6,000 weather stations around the world -- some of which date back more than 150 years. That's a lot of data, so we would expect to see a few errors. We very much encourage people to alert us to any records that seem unusual.

"There are some gaps in the grid -- this is because there are no weather stations in remote areas such as the Sahara. Users may also spot that the location of some weather stations is not exact. This is because the information we have about the latitude and longitude of each station is limited to 1 decimal place, so the station markers could be a few kilometres from the actual location.

"This isn't a problem scientifically because the temperature records do not depend on the precise location of each station. But it is something which will improve over time as more detailed location information becomes available."

This new initiative is described in a new research paper published on February 4 in the journal Earth System Science Data (Osborn T.J. and Jones P.D., 2014: The CRUTEM4 land-surface air temperature dataset: construction, previous versions and dissemination via Google Earth).

The CRUTEM4 data set is available from doi:10.5285/EECBA94F-62F9-4B7C-88D3-482F2C93C468.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of East Anglia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. T. J. Osborn, P. D. Jones. The CRUTEM4 land-surface air temperature data set: construction, previous versions and dissemination via Google Earth. Earth System Science Data, 2014; 6 (1): 61 DOI: 10.5194/essd-6-61-2014

Cite This Page:

University of East Anglia. "World temperature records available via Google Earth." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 5 February 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140205091611.htm>.
University of East Anglia. (2014, February 5). World temperature records available via Google Earth. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140205091611.htm
University of East Anglia. "World temperature records available via Google Earth." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140205091611.htm (accessed September 1, 2014).

Share This




More Earth & Climate News

Monday, September 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Iceland Lowers Aviation Alert on Volcano

Iceland Lowers Aviation Alert on Volcano

AFP (Sep. 1, 2014) Iceland has lowered its aviation alert on its largest volcano after a fresh eruption on a nearby lava field prompted authorities to enforce a flight ban for several hours. Duration: 01:07 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Lightning Hurts 3 on NYC Beach

Lightning Hurts 3 on NYC Beach

AP (Sep. 1, 2014) A lightning strike injured three people on a New York City beach on Sunday. The storms also delayed flights and interrupted play at the US Open tennis tournament. (Sept. 1) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thailand Totters Towards Waste Crisis

Thailand Totters Towards Waste Crisis

AFP (Sep. 1, 2014) Fears are mounting in Bangkok that poor planning and lax law enforcement are tipping Thailand towards a waste crisis. Duration: 01:21 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Melting Ice Shelves Drive Rapid Antarctic Sea Level Rise

Melting Ice Shelves Drive Rapid Antarctic Sea Level Rise

Newsy (Sep. 1, 2014) A study of almost 20 years' worth of satellite images shows Antarctic sea levels are on the rise as ice shelves continue to melt. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins