Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for May 22nd through the 29th.
The moon is new early in the hours of Saturday the 27th. Look for a slim crescent moon in the east in the hour or so before dawn, sliding up next to the brilliant Venus on the 24th.
Mars and Saturn are still visible in the west after sunset this week. Saturn is the higher and brighter of the two planets. Jupiter is bright and hard to miss in the southeastern skies in the early evening.
The well-known winter constellation of Orion the Hunter is now on the horizon as the sky begins to darken. Sirius, the brightest star in our skies after the sun, is low in the haze of the atmosphere in evening twilight, so it may appear to intensely twinkle in many different colors.
On the other side of the sky, the summer constellations are starting to come into view. By 9:30, Hercules along with its famous star cluster is above the horizon and Lyra, with the bright star Vega are low in the northeast. By about 11 p.m., the stars Deneb and Altair have risen, completing what is commonly called the Summer Triangle.
There is currently no public viewing on the UT campus telescopes. Summer viewing will start in June. Please call back in the next few weeks for more information.
Thank you for calling the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report and have a happy and safe Memorial Day weekend.