skywatchers report

Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for August 25th through September 1st

The new moon for the month of August occurs in the evening hours of Wednesday the 27th, leaving nice dark skies for Mars observing.

As most people have already heard, Mars will be at its closest point to earth in about 60,000 years this Wednesday. The Red Planet has been steadily growing larger and brighter in telescopes all year and has been very favorable for observing all month. Although the date of closest approach has been trumpeted in the media, Mars will still be nearly as big and bright for several weeks following and will be a good object to observe all autumn. Mars rises at about 8:15 p.m. at mid-week and is visible in the east-southeast in the evening hours.

For more skywatching tips for the week check out stardate.org

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 11 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 call 232-4265 for up-to-date cancellation information.

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

Thank you for calling the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report and have a pleasant and safe Labor Day weekend.