Example of Contour Plot

A food scientist wants to determine the optimal time and temperature for heating a frozen dinner. The scientist prepares 14 samples at various times and temperatures, and then has professional food tasters rate each sample for overall quality. The scientist creates a contour plot to examine the results.

  1. Open the sample data, FrozenDinnerPrep.MTW.
  2. Choose Graph > Contour Plot.
  3. In Z variables, enter Quality.
  4. In Y variable, enter Temp.
  5. In X variable, enter Time.
  6. Click OK.

Interpret the results

In this graph, darker regions indicate higher z-values. These higher z-values seem to form a ridge running from the upper left of the graph to the middle right. The valleys in the lower part of the graph and the upper right represent time-temperature combinations that result in under-cooked or over-cooked entrees, respectively.