skywatchers report

Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for Monday November 9th through Sunday the 15th.

The moon is at third quarter on Monday the 9th, so we will have a waning crescent moon all of this week.

Mercury is still very close to the sun, setting just 20 minutes after the sun at the end of the week. Jupiter is high in the south at 7 p.m. this week and Mars is rising at 11:15 p.m. The remainder of the planets visible to the unaided eye are up after midnight. Saturn is rising at about 3 a.m. Look for the crescent moon alongside Saturn on the morning of Thursday the 12th. Venus continues to sink back towards the sun and rises at 5:45 a.m. at midweek.

As we head in to the final months of the year, the familiar shape of the constellation Orion the hunter can now be seen over the eastern horizon by 10 p.m. Above Orion is the constellation Taurus the Bull with the well-known open star clusters of the Hyades and the Pleiades, which is often better known by the name of the Seven Sisters.

The next space shuttle mission to the International Space Station is due to launch next Monday. Atlantis will be delivering parts to the station and will have three spacewalks. You can learn more about the mission at nasa.gov

Public viewing at the 16-inch reflector on top of Robert Lee Moore Hall is on Wednesday nights now from 7 to 9 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 now from 7 to 9 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.

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.