Advanced Search

IPY Blogs

Atlas of the Cryosphere


John Maurer, from the World Data Center for Glaciology in Boulder, is pleased to announce his new Atlas of the Cryosphere, providing interactive maps of major features of the frozen world. This should be a great tool for both scientists and educators.

John writes:

The National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) “Atlas of the Cryosphere” Web site ( allows visitors to explore and dynamically map the Earth’s frozen regions. Viewed from a polar perspective, the available scenes include snow cover, sea ice extent and concentration, glaciers, permafrost, and other critical components of the Earth’s cryosphere. Users can zoom in to a specific region on the Earth as well as overlay country borders, major cities, and other geographic information. This site should act as a useful tool in science and education efforts surrounding the International Polar Year (IPY) (2007-2008) and beyond by providing a geographic tool for viewing snow and ice on the planet.

In addition to providing an interactive web interface, maps and data sources contained in the Atlas of the Cryosphere are also accessible via the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) Web Map Service (WMS), Web Feature Service (WFS), and Web Coverage Service (WCS). These international specifications provide a framework for sharing maps and geospatial data over the internet.

We welcome your feedback on this project. If you have questions, comments, or suggestions, please contact NSIDC User Services (). The development of this map server application was supported by NASA’s Earth Observing System (EOS) Program and was developed using MapServer, an Open Source development environment for building spatially-enabled Internet applications.

Add A Comment

Please use these fields to leave a public comment on this entry. For direct correspondence with the IPY International Programme Office, please see Get Involved or email the IPY Programme Office.





Please enter the word you see in the image below: