skywatchers report

Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for Monday July 21st through Sunday the 27th.

The moon is at third quarter on Friday the 25th, so we’ll have dark early evening skies this week.

Mars and Saturn are still near one another in the western skies after the sun sets, but are setting around 10:30 p.m. now. Venus can be glimpsed low in the west-northwest shortly after the sun sets, although it will be getting higher and higher each night for a while.

Jupiter is rising at 7:30 p.m. this week, so it is now much higher as the sky darkens in the early evening. Neptune and Uranus are now rising earlier, with Neptune up at 9:45 and Uranus up around 11.

Mercury is up just 45 minutes before the sun at the beginning of the week and only 15 minutes before the sun by Sunday.

Now that we’re well into summer, look for Scorpius the Scorpion due south at around 10 p.m. this week. The summer triangle of bright stars – Vega, Deneb and Altair are also well up in the east by 10 p.m.

Public viewing at the 16-inch reflector on top of Robert Lee Moore Hall is on Wednesday nights from 9:00 to 10:30 p.m. RLM is located on the southeast corner of Dean Keeton and Speedway. Take the elevator to the 17th floor and follow the signs to the telescope.

Public viewing at the 9-inch refractor at Painter Hall is on Friday and Saturday nights from 9:00 to 10:30 p.m. Painter Hall is located on 24th street about halfway between Speedway and Guadalupe and is northeast of the UT Tower. To get to the telescope, take the elevator to the 5th floor and exit to the left. Follow the 5th floor hallway to the end and take the staircase through the double doors on the left. Once you reach the 6th floor, go to your right and follow the signs up to the telescope.

All events are free and open to all ages and no reservations are required. Note that viewing times and availability change throughout the year. Observing events are weather permitting. Please call 232-4265 for weather cancellation information, which is updated 30 to 60 minutes before the scheduled start time when a viewing is cancelled.

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