The location of the hottest spot on the Earth's surface has long been a source of interest and curiosity. With images of blazing desert landscapes, several places have proudly claimed the title of ‘hottest place on Earth.’ Death Valley, California, the hottest place in North America, held the world record air temperature of 56.7°C from 1913 to 1922, until the current world record air temperature of 58.0°C was recorded in 1922 in El Azizia, Libya. Until recently, only point-based air temperature measurements in scattered locations were available to researchers trying to understand maximum temperatures. This incomplete picture, based largely on the locations of weather stations, clearly suggested that hotter air temperatures were occurring, but measurements on the scale needed to locate the hottest place simply were not practical.
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