skywatchers report

Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for September 2nd through the 8th.

The moon is at first quarter on Wednesday the 3rd.

Mars is still a wonderful object to watch this week and is still nearly as big and bright as it was last week during its historic close approach. It rises at about 7:45 this week and is visible high in the southeast by 10:30.

Saturn is slowly making its way back towards evening skies. It is currently rising at about 2:30 in the morning near the constellation Orion, a familiar shape in the winter skies. Saturn will be well placed for early evening observing by December.

The end is almost near for the Galileo spacecraft, which has been exploring Jupiter since December 1995. The spacecraft will plunge into Jupiter on September 21. To follow the countdown of Galileo's remaining days, log on to galileo.jpl.nasa.gov

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 and Saturdays are open for the general public, both currently running 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.