skywatchers report

Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers Report for Monday September 8th through Sunday September 14th.

The moon is full on the night of Monday the 8th, 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, and as the full moon closest to the northern hemisphere autumnal equinox, this moon is also traditionally called the Harvest Moon.

Mercury is low in the west at sunset and is setting about an hour after the sun.

Mars and Saturn are still visible low in the southwest at nightfall. Saturn is setting at 10:40 p.m., followed by Mars at 11:00 p.m.

Jupiter is rising at 4:25 a.m. at midweek, about three hours before the sun. Venus continues to sink towards the sun and is up about an hour before sunrise.

With the naked-eye planets clustered around sunrise and sunset, you might want to try to take a look at Uranus and Neptune, which are currently up for most of the night. Neptune is rising at 7:00 p.m., followed by Uranus at 8:50 p.m. You will need a binoculars or at least a small telescope to see these planets.

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 texassports.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 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.