Theoretical and Applied Climatology

, Volume 41, Issue 1, pp 11–21

Mean seasonal and spatial variability in global surface air temperature

  • D. R. Legates
  • C. J. Willmott

DOI: 10.1007/BF00866198

Cite this article as:
Legates, D.R. & Willmott, C.J. Theor Appl Climatol (1990) 41: 11. doi:10.1007/BF00866198


Using terrestrial observations of shelter-height air temperature and shipboard measurements, a global climatology of mean monthly surface air temperature has been compiled. Data were obtained from ten sources, screened for coding errors, and redundant station records were removed. The combined data base consists of 17 986 independent terrestrial station records and 6 955 oceanic grid-point records. These data were then interpolated to a 0.5° of latitude by 0.5° of longitude lattice using a spherically-based interpolation algorithm. Spatial distributions of the annual mean and intra-annual variance are presented along with a harmonic decomposition of the intra-annual variance.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. R. Legates
    • 1
  • C. J. Willmott
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Geography, College of GeosciencesUniversity of OklahomaNormanUSA
  2. 2.Center for Climatic Research, Department of GeographyUniversity of DelawareNewarkUSA