skywatchers report

Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for July 15th through the 21st .

The moon is at first quarter early in the morning hours of the 17th.

Venus is the bright star-like object in the west after sunset. The bright star below and to the right of Venus is Regulus, the brightest star in the constellation Leo the Lion.

Antares, the brightest star in Scorpius the Scorpion is almost due south at 10 p.m. this week. The stars that appear to be in a line above and to the right of Antares are the top part of the constellation, with the body and tail of the scorpion trailing below and to the left. Antares name translates to 'the rival of Mars' and can be mistaken for our fourth planet due to its similar coloring and brightness. Of course, one look in a telescope will tell you quickly which is the planet and which is the star. In our skies right now, Mars is very close to the sun and not visible.

The telescope at Robert Lee Moore hall is open to the public on Wednesday nights at 9 p.m. The building is located on the southeast corner of Dean Keeton (formerly 26th street) and Speedway. Take the elevator to the 17th floor and follow the signs to the telescope.

The telescope at Painter hall is open on Fridays for UT students, faculty and staff from 9:00 to 10:00 p.m. and Saturdays are open to the general public from 9:00 to 11:00 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.

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