skywatchers report

Welcome to the University of Texas Skywatchers' Report for Monday October 22nd through Sunday the 28th.

The moon is full late on Thursday the 25th going by central daylight time. This full moon, being the first after the Harvest Moon, is known as the Hunter’s Moon.

Jupiter is getting lower each night in the southwestern skies after sunset and will be dipping below the horizon by 9:30 p.m. at midweek. Mars is now rising at around 11 p.m. alongside the constellation Orion the Hunter. The moon will be next to the Pleiades star cluster on Saturday the 27th.

Mercury is at inferior conjunction with the sun, which means it is crossing between the Earth and the sun and is not currently visible in our twilight skies. Mercury will re-appear in the morning skies in a few weeks.

Saturn and Venus are drifting farther apart in the morning skies. Saturn is now above Venus and is rising at 3:20 a.m. at midweek. Venus, still very bright in our morning skies, is rising at about 4 a.m. On Sunday, Venus will be at its greatest elongation west, meaning it reaches its farthest point from the sun in our morning skies. On that day, Venus will be 46.5 degrees from the sun.

Public viewing at the 16-inch reflector on top of Robert Lee Moore Hall is on Wednesday nights 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 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 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.

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