The importance of high-resolution meteorological time-series data for detection of transformative changes in the climate system is unparalleled. These data sequences allow for a comprehensive study of natural and forced evolution of warming and cooling tendencies, recognition of distinct structural changes, and periodic behaviors, among other things. Such inquiries call for applications of cutting-edge analytical tools with powerful computational capabilities. In this regard, we documented the application potential of visual analytics (VA) for climate change detection in meteorological time-series data. We focused our study on long- and short-term past-to-current meteorological data of three Central European cities (i.e., Vienna, Munich, and Zürich), delivered in different temporal intervals (i.e., monthly, hourly). Our aim was not only to identify the related transformative changes, but also to assert the degree of climate change signal that can be derived given the varying granularity of the underlying data. As such, coarse data granularity mostly offered insights on general trends and distributions, whereby a finer granularity provided insights on the frequency of occurrence, respective duration, and positioning of certain events in time. However, by harnessing the power of VA, one could easily overcome these limitations and go beyond the basic observations.
climate change; meteorological time-series; global warming; visual analytics; visual computing