Interactive map shows how scorching temperatures are being recorded all over the world
The map uses data from the world's most powerful supercomputers that include the Global Forecast System (GFS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
A beautiful new interactive map has revealed how record high temperatures are being recorded around the world. It uses data that has been taken from the world's most powerful supercomputers that include the Global Forecast System (GFS) and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), to bring out a world map that features the most recent weather readings that have been taken from across the planet. Users have the option of switching between wind speeds, relative humidity, and surface temperature. The map is so interactive that it reveals to the users the full extent of how warm the Earth has become and how these warm spells have been responsible for triggering weather warnings in almost every corner of the globe. The software is pretty accurate and it updates itself with the latest temperature readings every three hours.
According to the Daily Mail, England has recorded highs of 33°C (91.94°F) this week alone, Sweden is going through the hottest summer in more than a century, parts of Southern California are warmer than usual at 38°C (100°F) and Saudi Arabia is experiencing searing heat at more than 46°C (115°F). In Japan so far, 65 people have died from the heat and more than 22,000 have been sent to the hospital after Tokyo recorded highs of 41.1°C (105°F).
Experts have stated that the record high temperatures that started late last month across the world are expected to continue till the end of August. This phenomenon is caused by constant high pressures globally.
Weather patterns have been stopped from moving towards the east because of stationary regions of high pressure. The cause of this is an unusually weak jet stream, high Atlantic ocean temperatures, and the constant rise in temperatures which are a result of climate change. Scientists have said that it is because of this that the northern hemisphere will be plagued by many more weeks of heat.
The professor of Climate Science at the University of Reading, Professor Len Shaffrey, told the Daily Mail: "The high pressure means that the storms we occasionally get at this time of year are being steered much further northwards towards Iceland.
The high-pressure system is unusually persistent and has been building up over Europe throughout spring and early summer."
According to advanced computer models, the recent surge in heat which started in late June and is expected to continue into the second half of July and August is caused by the combination of a few weather phenomena happening at the same time.
The Earth gets its share of high air pressure periods that cause the temperatures to shoot up way above the average amount but it is very rare that these periods of heat last for so long and that too across a large stretch of the planet. The reason for the pressure lasting for so long is that the jet stream has become weak.
The jet stream is a column of strong winds that are around five to seven miles (8-11km) above the surface of the planet that drives the weather patterns around the world.
Experts have said that the jet stream that we are experiencing right now is extremely weak and it is taking longer to move the high-pressure air that formed over parts of the northern hemisphere to the south. The recent heatwave that has affected so many parts of the globe can be attributed to not only a weakened jet stream but also climate change.
Professor Peter Stott, who is a Met Office science fellow in attribution, has said that there has been an increased chance of heatwaves affecting the Earth for longer periods of time.
He said: "What we’ve seen this summer is repeated throws throwing up a six in different parts of the world. If you get a six over and over again you start to think 'This is not normal, somebody has given me a loaded dice'."
An interactive map, known as earth.nullschool.net, shows how the recent spike in temperature has hit the northern hemisphere hard. The site was created by Tokyo-based software engineer Cameron Beccario because he wanted to test out his coding skills. The animation visualizes the global weather and wind conditions that have been forecast by supercomputers. Latest weather patterns are updated every three hours and the ocean surface currents are updated every five days.