Detecting El Niño in Sea Surface Temperature Data

Type of Resource



This multi-part activity introduces users to normal seasonal sea surface temperature (SST) variation as well as extreme variation, as in the case of El Niño and La Niña events, in the equatorial Pacific Ocean. Via a THREDDS server, users learn how to download seasonal SST data for the years 1982 to 1998. Using a geographic information system (GIS), they visualize and analyze that data, looking for the tell-tale SST signature of El Niño and La Niña events that occurred during that time period

Performance Expectations

MS-ESS2-6   Develop and use a model to describe how unequal heating and rotation of the Earth cause patterns of atmospheric and oceanic circulation that determine regional climates.

Science and Engineering Practices