Awards & Nominations

Frosted Snakes has received the following awards and nominations. Way to go!

Local Peoples' Choice Winner

The Challenge | Find My Cryosphere!

Design an app that lets a user pick a location and learn about the parts of Earth's cryosphere that impact that location.


HIGH SCHOOL: Unearthing the Cryosphere educates the public about the importance of the cryosphere and uses an interactive map to help users visualize how the cryosphere affects their lives.

Frosted Snakes




The cryosphere is all of the earth that contains frozen water, though most don’t know much about it. This frozen water is an integral part of the Earth’s climate, and humans have had a hand in hurting it. The melting of ice negatively impacts the water cycle, water supply, permafrost, sea level, and the habitats of polar animals.

In order to help educate the general public on the threat to our cryosphere, our team needed to developed a technique to visualize data and make it meaningful to people around the world. Our solution is “Unearthing the Cryosphere,” a webpage focused on informing the public about the Earth’s cryosphere and why it’s important to them. The webpage has a built-in app that utilizes the user’s location to display perennial cyrosphere components (mostly permafrost and glaciers) closest to them, and helps to educate them on how these features affect their lives and surrounding area.

This could be used to inform a user on the coast how his life could be affected by rising sea levels due to melting ice caps, or how a user in the midwest may have to worry about drought due to rising surface temperatures. The webpage accomplishes all of this by looking through NASA glacier data and finding the closest glacier to your current location. The data is then shown on a map using a JavaScript API called Leaflet.

future of project

Our webpage is currently capable of displaying data in North America, but our team plans to widen our data pool and expand the features to display a larger area of data in the future. We would want to add map functions that display all main components of the cryosphere:

  • Snow fall (annual rate in your area)
  • Ice
  • Sea ice (density and thickness)
  • Glaciers
  • Ice shelves (height and area)
  • Ice bergs (density)
  • Frozen ground (annual rate in your area, closest areas of permafrost)

We would also like to add satellite images that correspond with the location of the closest cryosphere components.

To improve the storytelling of the map we would want to by add information on the animals, plants, insects, and industries affected by the cryosphere. Example: The cryosphere disappears in Michigan, apple trees will no longer be able to grow because their seeds require prolonged cold to germinate, weasels will not be able to create borrows in the winter snow or be camouflaged by their white winter coats , and the snow plow industry will die.

We want “Unearthing the Cryosphere” to empower users with the knowledge to join the cause and protect our cryosphere before it’s too late.


We began thinking about our problem and how to solve it by using python, but python had a steep learning curve and we couldn't learn how to use the tools within such a short amount of time. Additionally, the Internet caused delays because so many people were using the bandwidth, and we lost a lot of time trying to download tools.

Our first challenge was that our data was too big. The API we were using couldn't handle so much data and we had to learn how to filter the data to only use what we needed for our project.

This was a small part of our biggest challenge, which was shifting our mindset about how to deal with data. The term "data" is a general term, and we didn't have any experience manipulating such large swaths of data for a very specific purpose. We had to learn about utilizing data efficiently and effectively to produce a working project, and it taught us about data manipulation.


NASA Resources and Data




SpaceApps is a NASA incubator innovation program.