Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers Report for Monday July 22nd through Sunday the 28th.
The full moon for the month of July is on Monday the 22nd so we will have a waning gibbous moon for the remainder of the week. This full moon is known as the Hay Moon and the Thunder Moon.
Venus continues to shine brightly in the west after sunset and is setting at 10:10 p.m. Saturn is still up high in the south-southwest as night falls and is setting at 1:10 a.m.
Jupiter and Mars will be close together in the morning skies this week although they will start moving away from one another after starting the week a little less than a degree apart. Both planets are rising at about 4:45 a.m., which is two hours before sunrise. Early risers can catch a preview of the constellations of winter with Orion the Hunter rising to the right of Jupiter and Mars.
Mercury is up at 5:30 a.m., so you should be able to pick it out from the morning twilight.
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. this summer. 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. this summer. 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 512-232-4265 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.