GISS Surface Temperature of Earth (GISTEMP)

An Extract from The NASA GISTEMP Webpage

GISTEMP Figures
Image Courtesy NASA GISS

The Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) Surface Temperature Analysis (GISTEMP) is an estimate of global surface temperature change.

Graphs and tables are updated around the middle of every month using current data files from NOAA GHCN v3 (meteorological stations), ERSST v5 (ocean areas), and SCAR (Antarctic stations), combined as described in our December 2010 publication (Hansen et al. 2010).

These updated files incorporate reports for the previous month and also late reports and corrections for earlier months.

News and Updates

See the GISTEMP News page for a list of announcements and NASA articles related to the GISTEMP analysis.

See the Updates to Analysis page for detailed update information.

Contacts

Before contacting us, please check if your question about the GISTEMP analysis is already answered in the FAQ.

If the FAQ does not answer your question, please address your inquiry to Dr. Reto Ruedy.

Other researchers participating in the GISTEMP analysis are Avi Persin, Dr. Makiko Sato, and Dr. Ken Lo. This research was initiated by Dr. James E. Hansen, now retired. It is currently led by Dr. Gavin Schmidt.

Citation

When referencing the GISTEMP data provided here, please cite both this webpage and also our most recent scholarly publication about the data. In citing the webpage, be sure to include the date of access.

Background of the GISS Analysis

The basic GISS temperature analysis scheme was defined in the late 1970s by James Hansen when a method of estimating global temperature change was needed for comparison with one-dimensional global climate models. The scheme was based on the finding that the correlation of temperature change was reasonably strong for stations separated by up to 1200 km, especially at middle and high latitudes. This fact proved sufficient to obtain useful estimates for global mean temperature changes.

Temperature analyses were carried out prior to 1980, notably those of Murray Mitchell, but most covered only 20-90°N latitudes. Our first published results (Hansen et al. 1981) showed that, contrary to impressions from northern latitudes, global cooling after 1940 was small, and there was net global warming of about 0.4 °C between the 1880s and 1970s.

The early analysis scheme went through a series of enhancements that are listed and illustrated on the History Page.

See the rest of this, in-depth NASA webpage and more starting at: https://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/.

About GISS

The NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) is a laboratory in the Earth Sciences Division (ESD) of National Aeronautics and Space Administration‘s Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC). The ESD is part of GSFC’s Sciences and Exploration Directorate.

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General inquiries about the scientific programs at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies may be directed to the Goddard Space Flight Center Public Affairs office at 1-301-286-8955.

https://www.giss.nasa.gov