Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for Monday August 31st through Monday September 7th.
The full moon for the month of September is on Friday the 4th. This full moon is known as the Fruit Moon and the Corn Moon.
Saturn and Mercury are now setting about 45 minutes after the sun as they both head towards conjunction in a couple of weeks. Jupiter is bright in the southeast as the sky darkens. Look for the Moon and Jupiter close together on September 2nd. Mars is rising at 2 a.m. and Venus follows at 4:30 a.m.
After a couple of delays, the Space Shuttle Discovery finally launched last Friday on its mission to the International Space Station, where it docked on Sunday. Astronaut Nicole Stott will be joining the ISS crew and will be the last occupant to arrive via the space shuttle, although she will leave on a shuttle flight targeted for November. Future astronauts bound for the station will arrive by Russian Soyuz capsules. You can follow the mission online at nasa.gov
Public viewing on the UT campus telescopes resume this week.
Public viewing at the 16-inch reflector on top of Robert Lee Moore Hall is on Wednesday nights currently from 8 to 10 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 currently 8 to 10 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. Please note that there will be no Painter Telescope viewing on Saturday evenings when the UT football team has a night home game. To check the football schedule, logon to mackbrown-texasfootball.com An evening game is scheduled for this Saturday, so there will be no star party on the 5th.
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 viewing start time when a viewing is cancelled.
Thank you for calling the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report and have a great Labor Day weekend.