Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for July 28th through August 3rd.
The moon will be new on Tuesday the 29th. Just after sunset on the 30th, the moon will be just above the western horizon with Jupiter to its lower right. Mercury and Regulus, the brightest star in the constellation Leo the Lion, will be to the left of the barely visible moon.
Mars is now rising a little after 10 p.m. this week and has brightened to magnitude -2.3 and is now only about 39 million miles from the Earth.
The Delta Aquarid meteor shower peaks on the nights of the 28th and 29th. This shower is not a major one and usually produces between 10 and 20 meteors an hour. The next major meteor shower will be the Perseids, which peaks in two weeks and will unfortunately be hampered by a full moon.
The telescope at Robert Lee Moore Hall is open to the public on Wednesday nights starting at 9:00 p.m. RLM is located on the southeast corner of Dean Keeton and Speedway. Take the elevators 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 to 10 p.m. and Saturdays for the general public from 9 to 11 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.