Using surface temperature data from NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies, a University of Minnesota undergrad created a cello performance that traces the warming of our planet.
The temperature data were mapped over a range of three octaves, with the coldest year on record (1909) set to the lowest note on the cello (open C). Each ascending halftone is equal to roughly 0.03°C of planetary warming.
In Crawford’s composition, each note represents a year, ordered from 1880 to 2012. The pitch reflects the average temperature of the planet relative to the 1951–80 base line. Low notes represent relatively cool years, while high notes signify relatively warm ones.
The result is a haunting sequence that traces the warming of our planet year by year since the late 19th century.
What an incredible way to portray the change in our planet's climate, beyond the standard charts and graphs.