A carbon nanotube (CNT) thermometer that operates on the principles of electrical shot noise is reported. Shot noise thermometry is a self-calibrating measurement technique that relates statistical fluctuations in dc current across a device to temperature. A structure consisting of vertical, top, and bottom-contacted single-walled carbon nanotubes in a porous anodic alumina template was fabricated and used to measure shot noise. Frequencies between 60 and 100 kHz were observed to preclude significant influence from 1/f noise, which does not contain thermally relevant information. Because isothermal models do not accurately reproduce the observed noise trends, a self-heating shot noise model has been developed and applied to experimental data to determine the thermal resistance of a CNT device consisting of an array of vertical single-walled CNTs supported in a porous anodic alumina template. The thermal surface resistance at the nanotube-dielectric interface is found to be 1.5 × 108 K/W, which is consistent with measurements by other techniques. © 2006 IEEE.