UTSA hosts "Friday Nights, Celestial Lights" and partial solar eclipse viewing May 18 & May 20



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(May 15, 2012) -- UTSA faculty astronomers invite the community to attend "Friday Nights, Celestial Lights" at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, May 18 in Science Building (Room 2.02.02) on the UTSA Main Campus. The family-friendly astronomy event is free and open to the public.

This month's theme "Venus," features a presentation by Mark Jurena of UTSA who will discuss the latest updates from the European Venus Express mission as well as the upcoming Venus transit in June.

At 8:30 p.m., weather permitting, attendees will have the opportunity to view the night sky using UTSA's telescopes including a 15-inch telescope and several 8-inch Cassegrain telescopes. Night viewing will be from the fourth-floor patio of the Science Building, which is wheelchair accessible. If the sky is clear, Saturn will be visible as well as the Beehive, a star cluster in Cancer.

At 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, May 20, UTSA faculty astronomers invite the community to campus to view a partial eclipse of the Sun, until sundown. Weather permitting, solar telescopes will allow for viewing of the sun and will be set up on the top of the Tobin Avenue Parking Garage (the parking garage closest to 1604). Visit UTSA Campus Map at http://www.utsa.edu/maps/main-map.html

Sponsored by the UTSA Department of Physics and Astronomy, the monthly "Friday Nights, Celestial Lights" began in 2009 as a celebration of the International Year of Astronomy, commemorating the 400th anniversary of Galileo Galilei using a telescope to observe the heavens.

For more information, contact Eric Schlegel, UTSA Vaughan Family Professor, at 210-458-6425 or Mark Jurena, UTSA astronomy lecturer, at 210-458-4922.