pygmt.datasets.load_earth_age(resolution='01d', region=None, registration=None)[source]

Load Earth seafloor crustal ages in various resolutions.

The grids are downloaded to a user data directory (usually ~/.gmt/server/earth/earth_age/) the first time you invoke this function. Afterwards, it will load the grid from the data directory. So you’ll need an internet connection the first time around.

These grids can also be accessed by passing in the file name @earth_age_res[_reg] to any grid plotting/processing function. res is the grid resolution (see below), and reg is grid registration type (p for pixel registration or g for gridline registration).

The default color palette table (CPT) for this dataset is @earth_age.cpt. It’s implicitly used when passing in the file name of the dataset to any grid plotting method if no CPT is explicitly specified. When the dataset is loaded and plotted as an xarray.DataArray object, the default CPT is ignored and GMT’s default CPT (turbo) is used. To use the dataset-specific CPT, you need to explicitly set cmap="@earth_age.cpt".

Refer to for more details.

  • resolution (str) – The grid resolution. The suffix d and m stand for arc-degrees and arc-minutes. It can be "01d", "30m", "20m", "15m", "10m", "06m", "05m", "04m", "03m", "02m", or "01m".

  • region (str or list) – The subregion of the grid to load, in the form of a list [xmin, xmax, ymin, ymax] or a string xmin/xmax/ymin/ymax. Required for grids with resolutions higher than 5 arc-minutes (i.e., "05m").

  • registration (str) – Grid registration type. Either "pixel" for pixel registration or "gridline" for gridline registration. Default is "gridline".


grid (xarray.DataArray) – The Earth seafloor crustal age grid. Coordinates are latitude and longitude in degrees. Age is in millions of years (Myr).


The registration and coordinate system type of the returned xarray.DataArray grid can be accessed via the GMT accessors (i.e., grid.gmt.registration and grid.gmt.gtype respectively). However, these properties may be lost after specific grid operations (such as slicing) and will need to be manually set before passing the grid to any PyGMT data processing or plotting functions. Refer to pygmt.GMTDataArrayAccessor for detailed explanations and workarounds.


>>> from pygmt.datasets import load_earth_age
>>> # load the default grid (gridline-registered 1 arc-degree grid)
>>> grid = load_earth_age()
>>> # load the 30 arc-minutes grid with "gridline" registration
>>> grid = load_earth_age(resolution="30m", registration="gridline")
>>> # load high-resolution (5 arc-minutes) grid for a specific region
>>> grid = load_earth_age(
...     resolution="05m",
...     region=[120, 160, 30, 60],
...     registration="gridline",
... )