GISS Surface Temperature Analysis

One-Line Description:

  • Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) surface temperature analysis for the globe.

Temporal Coverage:

  • Monthly anomalies 1880/01 to present (NASA uses 1951-1980 base period).

Spatial Coverage:

  • 2.0 degree latitude x 2.0 degree longitude global grid (360x180).
  • 89.0N - 80.0S, 1.0E - 359.5E.
Latest available data: Click to Enlarge


  • N/A

Update Schedule:

  • Monthly

Download/Plot Data:

Archive parameters:

Variable Statistic Level Download File Create Plot/Subset
Air Temperature Monthly Anomaly: 250km smoothed Surface plot
Air Temperature Monthly Anomaly: 1200km smoothed Surface plot
Combined SST/Air Temperature Monthly Anomaly: 250km smoothed Surface plot
Combined SST/Air Temperature Monthly Anomaly: 1200km smoothed Surface plot

Usage Restrictions:

  • None

Detailed Description:

  • From the NASA webpage: "The NASA GISS Surface Temperature Analysis (GISTEMP) provides a measure of the changing global surface temperature with monthly resolution for the period since 1880, when a reasonably global distribution of meteorological stations was established. Input data for the analysis, collected by many national meteorological services around the world, is the unadjusted data of the Global Historical Climatology Network (Peterson and Vose, 1997) except that the USHCN station records included were replaced by a later corrected version. These data were augmented by SCAR data from Antarctic stations. Documentation of our analysis is provided by Hansen et al. (1999), with several modifications described by Hansen et al. (2001). The GISS analysis is updated monthly.".


    The data is available on an equal area grid. NASA provides code to read it onto a 2x2 grid. They have two smoothing levels available for their updated data: 250km and 1200km smoothing. They make available a land only version and a version which includes the hadISST (post Dec 1981) and NOAA OI V2 for data over the oceans. There ARE missing data values.


  • None

Related File Naming & Structure Information:

File Names:

  •   (In directory: /Datasets/gistemp/)

Dataset Format and Size:

  • 4 PSD standard NetCDF4 monthly files.

Missing Data:

  • Missing data is flagged with a value of 9999.f


  • Please note: If you acquire GISTEMP data products from PSD, we ask that you acknowledge us in your use of the data. This may be done by including text such as GISTEMP data provided by the NOAA/OAR/ESRL PSD, Boulder, Colorado, USA, from their Web site at in any documents or publications using these data. We would also appreciate receiving a copy of the relevant publications. This will help PSD to justify keeping the GISTEMP data set freely available online in the future. Thank you!


Original Source:


  • Physical Sciences Division: Data Management
    325 Broadway
    Boulder, CO 80305-3328