Mesmerising animation of 2016 sea surface temperature

In a recent animation produced by EUMETSAT, remote sensing scientist Anne O’Carroll describes a year of sea surface temperature (SST) in 2016.

The animation combines satellite data with ocean surface measurements. The satellite data used come from both the geostationary ring of satellites and polar orbiting satellites including from Europe, America and Japan.

The global sea surface temperature animation is compiled from the Operational Sea Surface Temperature and Sea Ice Analysis (OSTIA) as produced by the UK Met Office. The products are available from the Copernicus Marine Environment Monitoring Service (CMEMS).

“The animation is important to see the changes on a global scale of the surface temperatures of our ocean and to consider how these influence weather patterns and thus our daily lives” Anne said.

Anne goes through each month of the year highlighting specific weather events, currents and changes in temperatures in different zones of the Earth focussing especially on El Niño–Southern Oscillation (ENSO) and La Niña (more information here).

As seasons change, colder temperatures are coloured in blue while warmer surface temperatures evolve from yellow to magenta, and while currents move we can see the changes in temperatures twirling around.

According to the scientist “The animation shows the beauty of the movement of our ocean and the changes in temperature and how energy is distributed and spreads around our globe, affecting the weather, climate, ecosystem and all our daily lives.”

Learn more about sea surface temperatures in 2016 here.

About the Author

Mara Dambour

Mara Dambour

Learning Zone Writer