Northern Territory in September 2022: very warm across the Top End

September daytime temperatures for the Northern Territory were the warmest on record across most of the Top End, but average to below average in the south. Night-time temperatures were above average across northern two-thirds of the Northern Territory. Cloud bands at the start and end of the month resulted in a wetter than average end to the dry season across most of the Northern Territory.

Wetter than usual

  • September rainfall across the Northern Territory was above average, bringing a wetter than average end to the dry season period.
  • For the Northern Territory as a whole, it was the wettest September since 2016.
  • At the start of the month, a cloud band cross the southern half of the Northern Territory brought daily rainfall totals of 10–25 mm on the 1st and 2nd.
  • A cloud band crossed the Territory late in the month, with daily rainfall totals of 10–25 mm recorded in the Barkly District in the 24 hours to 9am on the 28th.
  • The first storms of the season developed over the Darwin rural area on the afternoon of the 2nd.
  • Storms developed across the northern Top End again on the 27th and 28th as humidity increased and a south-easterly surge moved in.
  • Some sites had their highest September daily rainfall on record from storms late in the month.
  • Although not shown on the monthly map, rainfall totals from the storms in Arnhem Land were more than 8 times the September monthly average.
  • Some sites had their highest total September rainfall on record or for at least 20 years.
  • Very warm across the Top End

    • September mean maximum temperatures were the warmest on record (since 1910) for most of the Top End.
    • A number of sites in the Top End had their highest September mean daily maximum temperature on record.
    • For the Northern Territory as a whole, the mean maximum temperature was 1.14 °C above the 1961–1990 average, although cool conditions in the south meant that this was the coolest September since 2016.
    • Mean minimum temperatures were above to very much above average for most of the Northern Territory except for parts of the south.
    • Mean minimum temperatures were 2.07 °C above average for the Northern Territory overall, and more than 3 °C above average for much of the Gregory District.
    • Some sites had their highest September mean temperature on record or for at least 20 years.
    • Darwin Airport

      • Total rainfall for Darwin Airport was 12.6 mm, which is 76% of the long-term average of 16.5 mm.
      • The mean daily maximum temperature for Darwin Airport was 33.8 °C, which is 1.1 °C above the long-term average of 32.7 °C.
      • The mean maximum temperature was the 5th highest for September on record.
      • The warmest day was 37.4 °C on the 14th, and the coolest day was on the 28th when the temperature reached 32.0 °C.
      • The 37.4 °C on the 14th was the fourth-warmest September day on record at Darwin Airport.
      • The mean daily minimum temperature for Darwin Airport was 24.8 °C, which is 1.8 °C above the long-term average of 23.0 °C.
      • The mean minimum temperature was the 2nd-highest for September on record, behind only 1992.
      • The coldest morning was 22.4 °C on the 8th, and the warmest morning was on the 25th when the minimum temperature was 27.4 °C.
      • The minimum temperature of 27.4 °C on the 25th exceeded the previous September record at Darwin Airport of 27.2 °C on 22 September 2009.

      Alice Springs Airport

    • Total rainfall for Alice Springs Airport was 22.6 mm, which is 254% of the long-term average of 8.9 mm, the wettest September since 2016.
    • The mean daily maximum temperature for Alice Springs Airport was 26.8 °C, which is 0.6 °C below the long-term average of 27.4 °C, the coolest September since 2016.
    • The warmest day was 35.7 °C on the 20th, and the coolest day was on the 1st when the temperature reached 13.5 °C.
    • The mean daily minimum temperature for Alice Springs Airport was 10.1 °C, which is 0.2 °C above the long-term average of 10.3 °C.
    • The coldest morning was 2.4 °C on the 5th, and the warmest morning was on the 20th when the minimum temperature was 21.8 °C.

    A prolonged warm period in the Top End

  • Following a cooler start to the month, many sites in the Top End had their first 40 °C day on the 15th.
  • The heat persisted until the end of the month when humidity increased and a south-easterly surge moved in.
  • A number of sites, including Victoria River Downs and Tindal RAAF, had their highest September temperature on record during this period.
  • The highest temperature recorded was 41.8 °C at Bradshaw – Angallari Valley on the 17th, 0.2 °C below the Northern Territory September record.
  • Victoria River Downs had 14 consecutive days above 39.0 °C from the 14th to the 27th, the previous longest sequence in September was 6 days in 1971.
  • Some sites, including Darwin Airport, had their warmest September night on record.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057

Extremes in September 2022
Hottest day 41.8 °C at Bradshaw - Angallari Valley (Defence) on the 17th
Warmest days on average 38.7 °C at Bradshaw
Coolest days on average 25.7 °C at Curtin Springs
Coldest day 13.5 °C at Alice Springs Airport on the 1st
Coldest night 2.4 °C at Alice Springs Airport on the 5th
Coolest nights on average 10.1 °C at Alice Springs Airport
Warmest nights on average 25.5 °C at McCluer Island
Warmest night 28.4 °C at Victoria River Downs on the 22nd
Warmest on average overall 31.4 °C at Bradshaw
Coolest on average overall 18.5 °C at Alice Springs Airport
Wettest overall 138.6 mm at Warruwi Airport
Wettest day 92.7 mm at Charles Darwin University on the 29th
Strongest wind gust 81 km/h at Central Arnhem Plateau on the 19th

Maps
ObservedAnomalyDecile rank
Total
rainfall
Map of Rainfall totals Map of Percentage of normal rainfall Map of Rainfall deciles
Mean
daily
maximum
temperatures
Map of Mean maximum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean maximum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean maximum temperature
Mean
daily
minimum
temperatures
Map of Mean minimum temperature Map of Anomaly in mean minimum temperature Map of Decile rank of mean minimum temperature

Click on a map to show it full size in a pop-up window


Record highest September daily rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Warruwi Airport 86.8 on the 28th 26.6 on the 20th in 2016 99
Inverway 55.0 on the 1st 33.0 on the 23rd in 1998 62
Tipperary 45.0 on the 30th 44.5 on the 15th in 1943 51
Nightcliff Pool 54.6 on the 29th 45.0 on the 29th in 1981 35
Wagait Beach 45.8 on the 29th 43.0 on the 23rd in 2010 35
Karama 71.0 on the 28th 45.0 on the 4th in 2010 33
Leanyer 54.6 on the 29th 42.2 on the 30th in 2010 33
Thorak Cemetery 58.0 on the 29th 29.4 on the 14th in 2021 28
Point Fawcett 28.8 on the 29th 27.0 on the 23rd in 1998 26
Milingimbi Airport 61.4 on the 28th 26.8 on the 20th in 2010 20



Record highest September total rainfall
New record
(mm)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
September
Warruwi Airport 138.6 41.6 in 2016 100 2.7
Inverway 60.8 56.0 in 1975 63 5.2
Tipperary 50.0 45.0 in 2016 51 7.8
Karama 71.0 69.0 in 2020 32 15.1
Thorak Cemetery 83.0 52.6 in 2016 26 13.7
Milingimbi Airport 91.0 45.2 in 2010 20 7.9

Highest September total rainfall for at least 20 years
Observed
(mm)
Most recent
higher
Average for
September
Adelaide River Post Office 89.5 207.6 in 1981* 16.0
Howard Springs Nature Park 72.6 123.4 in 1988 19.5
Elliott 13.4 37.8 in 1998* 5.6

* note: there are gaps in the historical record at this site, so it is possible a higher value has gone unreported




Record highest September temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
September
Victoria River Downs 41.4 on the 26th 41.3 on the 30th in 2021 57 35.7
Jabiru Airport 40.4 on the 21st 40.0 on the 29th in 2003 45 36.3
McArthur River Mine Airport 40.9 on the 21st 40.6 on the 26th in 2003 44 35.5
Tindal RAAF 40.8 on the 21st 40.0 on the 27th in 2012 35 35.9
Douglas River Research Farm 40.7 on the 21st 40.6 on the 28th in 1997 34 36.9
Borroloola Airport 40.6 on the 23rd 40.5 on the 29th in 1996 29 35.1
Lajamanu Airport 41.5 on the 26th 41.1 on the 23rd in 2012 29 34.7
Delamere Weapons Range 40.3 on the 21st 40.0 on the 15th in 2003 26 35.8
Bradshaw 41.5 on the 17th = 41.5 on the 23rd in 2009 24 37.5
McCluer Island 32.4 on the 27th 31.9 on the 22nd in 2013 22 29.1



Record lowest September daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
September
Groote Eylandt Airport 25.8 on the 3rd 26.3 on the 10th in 2011 24 32.5



Record highest September mean daily maximum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
September
Warruwi Airport 32.4 32.2 in 2010 56 30.9
Jabiru Airport 38.0 37.6 in 2020 44 36.3
Gove Airport 31.7 31.5 in 2017 43 30.4
McArthur River Mine Airport 37.2 37.1 in 2020 43 35.5
Tindal RAAF 37.5 = 37.5 in 2020 34 35.9
Borroloola Airport 36.5 36.2 in 2017 28 35.1
Delamere Weapons Range 37.2 36.8 in 2020 25 35.8
McCluer Island 30.0 = 30.0 in 2016 21 29.1



Record highest September daily minimum temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
September
Darwin Airport 27.4 on the 25th 27.2 on the 22nd in 2009 82 23.0
Victoria River Downs 28.4 on the 22nd 28.0 on the 30th in 1988 56 18.2
Lajamanu Airport 27.8 on the 27th 27.5 on the 21st in 2009 29 16.7
Channel Point 27.5 on the 22nd 27.0 on the 30th in 2017 28 21.6
Delamere Weapons Range 28.2 on the 22nd 27.3 on the 20th in 2020 26 20.7
McCluer Island 27.4 on the 20th = 27.4 on the 27th in 2016 22 24.8



Highest September mean daily minimum temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
higher
Average for
September
Darwin Airport 24.8 24.9 in 1992 23.0



Record highest September mean temperature
New record
(°C)
Old
record
Years of
record
Average for
September
Darwin Airport 29.3 29.2 in 2010 81 27.8
Victoria River Downs 30.2 30.1 in 2016 55 27.0
Jabiru Airport 30.8 = 30.8 in 2010 44 29.0
Douglas River Research Farm 29.8 29.7 in 2010 33 27.9
Delamere Weapons Range 30.2 30.1 in 2016 25 28.2
Bradshaw 31.4 = 31.4 in 2020 23 29.8
Middle Point 29.4 29.3 in 2016 21 27.8

Highest September mean temperature for at least 20 years
Observed
(°C)
Most recent
higher
Average for
September
Tindal RAAF 30.2 30.6 in 1992 27.9



Summary statistics for September 2022
Maximum temperatures
(°C)
Minimum temperatures
(°C)
Rainfall
(millimetres)
Mean for
September
2022
Diff
from
average
Highest for
September
2022
Mean for
September
2022
Diff
from
average
Lowest for
September
2022
Total for
September
2022
Average
for
September
Rank of
September
2022
Fraction of
September
average
Darwin-Daly (district 14GA)
Batchelor Airport 36.4 +0.3 38.7 21st 22.6 +2.0 19.4 5th 42.4 10.3 v high 412%
Central Arnhem Plateau 35.6 +1.7 38.0 26th 21.3 +2.1 14.4 6th 34.8 6.4 v high 544%
Channel Point 31.5 +0.3 34.0 29th 23.5 +1.9 19.5 5th 5.8 11.7 average 50%
Charles Point 31.1   32.6 20th 25.2   23.1 7th 53.8
Croker Island Airport 33.9 +1.6 35.7 23rd 23.6 +0.5 20.1 6th 13.4
Darwin Airport 33.8 +1.1 37.4 14th 24.8 +1.8 22.4 8th 12.6 16.5 average 76%
Delamere Weapons Range 37.2 +1.4 40.3 21st 23.2 +2.5 17.9 3rd 0 3.1 lowest 0%
Douglas River Research Farm 38.1 +1.2 40.7 21st 21.4 +2.7 16.6 5th 4.6 5.2 high 88%
Dum In Mirrie Airstrip 33.1 +1.1 36.1 30th 24.0 +1.1 21.6 7th 19.8 18.4 high 108%
Jabiru Airport 38.0 +1.7 40.4 21st 23.4 +1.8 19.1 6th 55.0 12.4 v high 444%
Kangaroo Flats (Defence) 36.6   39.3 21st 23.4   20.9 5th 31.6
Knuckey Lagoon 35.1   38.2 21st 22.4   19.6 8th 57.4
McCluer Island 30.0 +0.9 32.4 27th 25.5 +0.7 23.5 6th 21.6 2.1 v high 1029%
Middle Point 37.2 +0.7 39.3 24th 21.6 +2.6 18.0 7th 3.8 15.6 average 24%
Mount Bundey North (Defence) 37.6   39.8 21st 24.1   20.8 6th 19.6
Mount Bundey South (Defence) 37.6   39.8 21st 23.8   19.6 6th 37.0
Murganella Airstrip 34.4   37.6 25th 20.9   15.5 6th 75.0 24.4 high 307%
Noonamah Airstrip 36.4   39.3 21st 23.4   20.3 7th 25.0 19.7 high 127%
Oenpelli Airport 37.6 +0.7 39.8 24th 22.5 +2.1 17.6 6th 97.2 19.1 v high 509%
Pirlangimpi Airport 34.2 +0.8 36.0 22nd 22.7 +1.3 18.8 6th 119.8 28.9 v high 415%
Point Fawcett 32.6 +0.3 34.8 21st 22.3 +1.2 18.0 7th 46.2 10.4 v high 444%
Point Stuart 34.3 +0.9 35.8 30th 23.4 +1.9 19.5 7th 0.4 10.3 average 4%
Port Keats Airport 34.1 +0.5 36.9 21st 22.8 +1.9 16.4 5th 0.6 7.7 average 8%
Tindal RAAF 37.5 +1.6 40.8 21st 22.9 +3.0 14.9 6th 17.4 8.3 high 210%
Arnhem (district 14BC)
Cape Wessel 32.7 +0.8 34.9 24th 25.0 +0.8 23.4 18th 15.4 6.7 high 230%
Gove Airport 31.7 +1.3 34.0 17th 22.1 +2.3 17.5 6th 60.6 7.6 v high 797%
Groote Eylandt Airport 33.1 +0.6 36.1 19th 20.2 +2.3 12.0 6th 33.8 8.2 high 412%
Milingimbi Airport 32.8 +0.8 34.6 20th 22.7 +1.3 15.7 6th 91.0 7.9 highest 1152%
Ngayawili 32.9 +1.0 35.5 22nd 22.4 +1.8 17.5 6th 12.2 6.0 high 203%
Warruwi Airport 32.4 +1.5 35.5 25th 24.7 +1.0 20.6 6th 138.6 2.7 highest 5133%
Roper-Mcarthur (district 14DE)
Borroloola Airport 36.5 +1.4 40.6 23rd 19.8 +2.3 11.9 5th 0.2 3.2 average 6%
Bulman 37.6 +1.3 40.5 21st 21.1 +2.9 12.5 6th 0.8 13.5 high 6%
Centre Island 31.4 +0.8 35.0 23rd 23.6 +1.4 19.7 7th 0 1.8 lowest 0%
Daly Waters Airstrip 37.1 +2.2 40.5 17th 19.2 +2.4 11.3 5th 0 1.8 lowest 0%
McArthur River Mine Airport 37.2 +1.7 40.9 21st 19.4 +2.1 11.1 5th 0 4.5 lowest 0%
Ngukurr Airport 37.4 +1.1 40.8 17th 21.4 +2.7 13.6 6th 0 5.7 v low 0%
Victoria (district 14F)
Bradshaw 38.7 +1.2 41.5 17th 23.9 +1.8 18.8 5th 2.0 2.2 high 91%
Bradshaw - Angallari Valley (Defence) 38.5   41.8 17th 23.3   18.5 6th 25.2
Bradshaw - Koolendong Valley (Defence) 38.0   41.3 21st 20.9   13.9 5th 0
Lajamanu Airport 36.1 +1.4 41.5 26th 20.3 +3.6 14.2 5th 0.2 5.1 average 4%
Victoria River Downs 38.0 +2.3 41.4 26th 22.5 +4.3 15.0 5th 0 4.4 lowest 0%
Barkly (district 15A)
Elliott 35.9 +0.6 40.4 26th 19.7 +2.2 12.8 4th 13.4 5.6 high 239%
Tennant Creek Airport 32.2 +0.4 39.1 26th 19.1 +0.6 11.9 4th 15.6 7.6 high 205%
Alice Springs (district 15B)
Alice Springs Airport 26.8 -0.6 35.7 20th 10.1 -0.2 2.4 5th 22.6 8.9 high 254%
Curtin Springs 25.7 -2.3 35.5 19th 11.3 +1.2 5.0 5th 21.6 9.9 high 218%
Jervois 28.5 -1.3 38.8 20th 12.3 +0.9 6.2 4th 9.0 10.3 high 87%
Rabbit Flat 34.9 +0.4 40.8 26th 15.8 +1.7 7.9 9th 1.2 4.8 average 25%
Territory Grape Farm 29.6 -0.7 36.6 20th 12.3 +0.4 6.5 3rd 14.6 10.5 high 139%
Walungurru Airport 29.9 -2.0 37.7 25th 16.6 -0.2 10.8 5th 12.6 7.0 v high 180%
Watarrka 27.3 -2.3 36.2 19th 12.3 -0.8 4.3 9th 14.0 9.7 high 144%
Yulara Airport 26.2 -2.7 35.6 19th 11.7 +0.9 5.4 5th 22.4 8.7 high 257%

Notes

The Monthly climate summary, usually published in the first week of the following month, lists the main features of the weather in Northern Territory using the most timely and accurate information available on the date of publication; it will generally not be updated. More extensive discussion of significant weather events, along with later information and data that has had greater opportunity for quality control, will be presented in the Monthly Weather Review.

This statement has been prepared based on information available at 12 pm on Monday 3 October 2022. Some checks have been made on the data, but it is possible that results will change as new information becomes available.

In some situations, some or all of the rainfall is in the form of hail or snow. In these cases the totals given are for the water equivalent: the depth of liquid water that results from melting any frozen precipitation. There can be significant 'undercatch' of snow in strong winds, meaning the true precipitation can be higher than that reported.

Averages for individual sites are long-term means based on observations from all available years of record, which vary widely from site to site. They are not shown for sites with less than 10 years of record, as they cannot then be calculated reliably.
The median is sometimes more representative than the mean of long-term average rain.

The Rank indicates how rainfall this time compares with the climate record for the site, based on the decile ranking (very low rainfall is in decile 1, low in decile 2 or 3, average in decile 4 to 7, high in decile 8 or 9 and very high is in decile 10).
The Fraction of average shows how much rain has fallen this time as a percentage of the long-term mean.

Where temperature area averages are mentioned, they are derived from the ACORN-SAT dataset.

Information about Australian Indigenous seasonal calendars is available at the Indigenous Weather Knowledge website.

Further information

Media
(03) 9669 4057

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