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white dwarf outburst

Dying Stars Suffer from 'Irregular Heartbeats'

Astronomers at The University of Texas at Austin and the University of Warwick have discovered never-before-seen outbursts in stars whose light pulses are usually reliable as a ticking clock.

McDonald Observatory: Brain Motor

Click to visit our YouTube channel to view this new 15-minute video overview of McDonald Observatory. Narrated by StarDate's Sandy Wood, it discusses our history and the cutting-edge science happening here today.

Pushing Toward Earth 2.0

McDonald Observatory astronomers working with NASA’s Kepler mission have helped to discover the first near-Earth-sized planet around a Sun-like star in the “habitable zone,” the range of distances where liquid water could pool on a planet’s surface.

GMT mirrors

Giant Magellan Telescope Construction Approved

The Giant Magellan Telescope's 11 international partners, including UT Austin, have unanimously approved its construction, securing the future of the project with more than $500 million to begin work on the world’s most powerful optical telescope. GMT is expected to see first light in 2021.

Fantastic New Photos!

We've just posted a lot of beautiful new images of McDonald in our gallery. The images by Ethan Tweedie Photography are available for personal use or by news media. Take a look!