NASA Climate Spiral 1880-Present

  • Released Wednesday, November 15th, 2023
  • Updated Saturday, February 10th, 2024 at 6:15AM
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The visualization presents monthly global temperature anomalies. This visualization is updated roughly two weeks after the end of each month.

Temperature anomalies are deviations from a long term global avergage. In this case the period 1951-1980 is used to define the baseline for the anomaly. These temperatures are based on the GISS Surface Temperature Analysis (GISTEMP v4), an estimate of global surface temperature change. The data file used to create this visualization is publically accessible here.

The term 'climate spiral' describes an animated radial plot of global temperatures. Climate scientist Ed Hawkins from the National Centre for Atmospheric Science, University of Reading popularized this style of visualization in 2016.

The Goddard Institute of Space Studies (GISS) is a NASA laboratory managed by the Earth Sciences Division of the agency’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland. The laboratory is affiliated with Columbia University’s Earth Institute and School of Engineering and Applied Science in New York.

The NASA climate spiral visualization with labels in English and Fahrenheit.

The NASA climate spiral visualization with labels in Spanish and Celsius.


Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Scientific Visualization Studio

Datasets used in this visualization

Note: While we identify the data sets used in these visualizations, we do not store any further details, nor the data sets themselves on our site.