Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers Report for Tuesday September 5th through Sunday September 10th.
The full moon for the month of September will occur late on the night of Tuesday the 5th and we'll have a waning gibbous moon for the remainder of the week. The full moon for the month of September is known as the Fruit Moon and the Corn Moon. The full moon in October will be closer to the Autumnal Equinox, so it will be the one known as the Harvest Moon this year.
Jupiter is still visible low in the west-southwest shortly after sunset and is setting at 9:30 p.m. this week, so time is running out for early evening observing of the gas giant.
Saturn is now just a little west of due south at sundown and is setting just before 1 a.m., giving observers a few hours of darkness to see it.
The remaining planets visible to the unaided eye are up in the morning skies with Venus rising at 4:50 a.m., followed by Mercury at 5:55 a.m. and Mars rounding out the group at 6:05 a.m.
The two non-naked-eye planets, Uranus and Neptune, will be moving into place for good early evening observing soon. Neptune is at opposition on Tuesday September 5th and Uranus will be at opposition in October.
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. Logon to TexasSports.com to check the football schedule.
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.