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Extracting site specific surface temperature data from NOAA high resolution daily SST files

Author: Alasdair.J.Edwards, University of Newcastle, UK.


The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the United States provide a range of global sea surface temperature (SST) datasets. A list of these and related freely available datasets can be found on:

This lesson shows how to download multiyear sea surface temperature data for specific sites of interest from NOAA global daily, weekly or monthly SST files, and explains how to extract time series data from locations of interest using Bilko in batch mode.

News See Brown et al., 2019: Long-term impacts of rising sea temperature and sea level on shallow water coral communities over a ~40 year period, Nature Scientific Reports, 9, 8826, for an example application.


  1. To learn how to access and download NOAA SST datasets.
  2. To open and view these files in Bilko.
  3. To learn how to set up a table with the coordinates of specific sites of interest.
  4. To extract SSTs for the sites of interest and paste them into an Excel spreadsheet.
  5. To learn how to use Bilko batch mode to do this for multiple SST files at a time.

How to download the lesson

If you have already registered as a Bilko user you can download the PDF lesson and the images you will need by entering your e-mail address in the box below. If you are new to Bilko, please register first, using the link on the top menu bar.

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Image examples from the lesson

SST image

Tropical and Subtropical Indo-Pacific sea surface temperature (SST) image of the world's oceans for mid July 1998.

Transect for regions of interest

1998 transect extracted for three regions of interest.


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