Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers Report for Monday July 25th through Sunday July 31st.
The moon is at third quarter on Tuesday the 26th and we'll have a waning crescent moon in the early morning skies for the remainder of the week.
Venus continues to slowly move away from the sun in the early evening skies and is setting about 45 minutes after the sun this week. Mercury follows a little later, setting about an hour after the sun.
Jupiter is now getting low in the west at sunset and you will have about two hours to observe it before it sets at 10:45 p.m.
Mars is high in the south at sunset and is setting at 1:50 a.m. this week.
The two bright objects to the left of Mars are Saturn and Antares, with Saturn being the higher of the two. Saturn is setting at 2:50 a.m. this week.
In space anniversaries this week, Tuesday July 26th marks 45 years since the launch of Apollo 15 to the moon. This mission had the first Lunar Roving Vehicle to be used on the Moon's surface, which would also be a part of the Apollo 16 and 17 missions. This mission also included the famous hammer and feather drop demonstration at the end of their last moon walk.
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 so please check the schedule before planning a visit. Observing events are weather permitting. Please call 512-232-4265 for weather cancellation information, which is updated 30 to 45 minutes before the scheduled viewing start time.
Thank you for calling the University of Texas Skywatchers Report.