The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is an American scientific government agency that focuses on the conditions of things like worldwide oceans and waterways as well as Earth’s atmosphere.
The group has a product called “Science On a Sphere” which displays some of its data onto a large, room-sized sphere. It’s typically found in museums. If you’ve ever looked at something like wind patterns on a massive globe projection in a museum, it was likely Science On a Sphere.
Now you can get a similar experience on your iPad or phone.
SOS Explorer is a mobile version of NOAA’s “Science of a Sphere.” Available for free for iOS and Android, with it you can see animated images portraying everything from atmospheric storms and climate change to Saturn’s rings.
You know, complicated environmental topics that are better understood with a little bit of a visual aid.
Here are some of the sample datasets available:
- Recent Hurricane Seasons
- Bird Migration
- Earthquake Activity
- Snow and Ice
- Ocean Currents
- Historical Tsunamis
- Facebook Friendships
- Air Traffic
- Planets of the Solar System
- Climate Change Models
- 360 Underwater Imagery
With the app, you essentially pick what you’d like to see, and then have that displayed on a virtual globe within the app. You can zoom in on different parts if you’d like, and customise your experience based on your interests.
It’s not exactly a replacement for the museum experience, but if you’re interested in earth science it can be a fun thing to play around with for a bit and potentially learn something in the process.