skywatchers report

Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for Monday July 9th to Monday July 16th.

The moon is new for the month of July on Saturday the 14th.

Venus and Saturn are still visible side-by-side in the western skies after the sun sets. But, you’ll have to catch them quick because Saturn sets at around 10:35 p.m. at midweek and Venus sets just 10 minutes later. On the night of Monday the 16th, look for the crescent moon in between Venus and Saturn.

Juptier is shining brightly in the southeast as the sky darkens. Look for the top of the constellation Scorpius just to Jupiter’s right. Mars is still a morning object, rising at 2:15 a.m. at midweek.

The Dawn mission to the asteroids Vesta and Ceres that was supposed to launch over the past weekend has been delayed until September. The next planetary mission, the Mars Phoenix lander, has a more limited launch window and was given priority over the launch for Dawn. The Phoenix mission will study the northern polar region of Mars. You can learn about the mission online at their website: http://phoenix.lpl.arizona.edu

Public viewing at the 16-inch reflector on top of Robert Lee Moore Hall is on Wednesday nights from 9 to 10:30 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 9 to 10:30 p.m. Painter Hall is located on 24th street about halfway between Speedway and Guadalupe and is northeast of the UT Tower.

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 viewing start time on nights when public viewing is cancelled.

Thank you for calling the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report.