skywatchers report

Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for January 26 through February 1.

The moon is at first quarter in the morning hours of Thursday the 29th.

Look for Mars just above and to the right of the moon on Tuesday the 27th in the west-southwest skies. A very bright Venus is still bright in the west during the early evening. Saturn is bright in the east around the same time, visible to the left of Orion. Jupiter is rising around 9 p.m. this week.

Over the weekend Opportunity, second Mars rover successfully landed on the red planet, coming to rest inside a small impact crater. Project scientists and engineers have also made steps toward diagnosing and repairing the communications problems that cropped up last week on the Spirit rover. You can follow the mission online at www.jpl.nasa.gov

For more skywatching tips for the week check out stardate.org

The telescope at Robert Lee Moore Hall is open to the public on Wednesday nights starting at 7:00 p.m. RLM is located on the southeast corner of Dean Keeton and Speedway. Take the elevators to the 17th floor and follow the signs to the telescope.

The telescope at Painter hall is open to the public on Fridays and Saturdays from 8:00 to 10:00 p.m. Painter Hall is located on 24th street about half way between Speedway and Guadalupe.

All events are free and open to all ages and no reservations are required. Observing events are weather permitting. Call 232-4265 for up-to-date cancellation information.

Please note that star party times change throughout the year. Please call this recording to check times before planning a visit to the telescopes.

Thank you for calling the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report.