Going Further


Users are encouraged to choose their own date for surface temperature other than December 3, 2008 from GLOBE. However, it is suggested that you use December data as that data is collected during the annual Surface Temperature Field Campaign and you will have more data to explore.

You can examine surface types other than "short grass" such as asphalt or concrete and see how that does or doesn't change the results. You could create your own definition of a large city and use values different from the suggested 50,000 for population, such as 30,000 or 100,000. Alternately, one can select a unique buffer around the population centers that helps to define "urban" in a way other than other than 25 km from the city center. While many dates have been tested, it is useful to test a variety of surface types and different population and buffer values.

Other Data

The most exciting part of this activity is that it opens the door for users to explore the approximately 75 unique data sets from schools around the world. While this chapter focused only on surface temperature data, the approach used here could be repeated with any data that may be impacted by higher population centers including air temperature, relative humidity, surface ozone, and others. All GLOBE data are available in the manner detailed in the chapter and can even be included in the same shape file as the surface temperature data by simply selecting the checkbox beside that data.

Other Techniques

The Land Processes Distributed Active Archive Center (LP DAAC) is a component of NASA's Earth Observing System (EOS) Data and Information System (EOSDIS) which processes, archives, and distributes land data and products derived from the EOS sensors. A new online tool is available. The MRTWeb combines the capabilities of the USGS Global Visualization Viewer (GloVis) and the downloadable MODIS Reprojection Tool. Using this interface, users can now find MODIS Surface Temperature data (called MOD11A1), download a raster data file, and correlate their GLOBE data with MODIS IRT data. The User Guide, also available on the site, provides support for using the MRT Web.

The LP DAAC site hosts a selection of data viewers.

Other Tools

GLOBE data can be imported into any GIS and most visualization tools such as AEJEE and ArcGIS.

Related Case Studies

Other EET chapters that use My World GIS and/or other GIS software include the following:

Detecting El Nino in Sea Surface Temperature DataCreate and analyze fifteen years of average SST maps to find El Niño and La Niño events.

Evidence for Plate TectonicsIdentify relationships among sea-floor age, earthquakes, and volcanoes to understand how they support the theory of plate tectonics.

Exploring Monsoon Precipitation and Streamflow in a Semi-Arid WatershedInvestigate the effect of summer thunderstorms on streamflow in a semi-arid watershed in Arizona.

Investigating Earthquakes with AEJEEDownload earthquake data from the USGS. Bring it into a GIS and analyze it to predict where the next big earthquake will occur on Earth.

Is Greenland Melting?Explore map layers to examine annual melting and long-term changes of Greenland's ice sheet.

Looking into Earth with GISExamine seismic wave data in a GIS and analyze wave velocities to infer the depth of the crust-mantle boundary.

Mapping Local DataFollow a study of Urban Heat Islands as an example of a map-based science research project.

Seeing the Forest for the Trees: What's in Your Woods?Investigate forest biodiversity in Maine using a spreadsheet and My World GIS. Then consider the environmental factors that contribute to tree species diversity.

Protecting Wetlands from Exurban DevelopmentExamine land-use changes around Macclenny, Florida. Propose locations for future development that minimize impacts on wetlands.

Tsunami Run-up Prediction for Seaside, Oregon with My World GISDownload and examine global, historical tsunami run-up patterns. Acquire DEM contours and import them into My World GIS. Then visualize the potential sea level rise that could occur during a tsunami run-up event near Seaside, Oregon.
Case Studies on Related Topics
Whither Arctic Sea Ice?Uses remote sensing data from Satellite images and the ImageJ program to illuminate trends in Arctic Sea Ice

Explore the Role of Snow Cover in Shaping ClimateUse ImageJ to explore and animate satellite images of reflected short wave radiation, snow cover, and land surface temperature downloaded from the NASA Earth Observation (NEO) website. Then use NEO's Image Composite Editor (ICE) to observe, graph, and analyze the relationship between these three variables.

How Permanent is Permafrost?Use Google Earth to explore the distribution of permafrost in the Arctic. Create graphs to analyze permafrost borehole data. Then compare the borehole temperature record with global temperature trends and reflect on the implications for Arctic permafrost.

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