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Two Eclipses Across Texas

Over the next year, Americans will have the opportunity to experience not one, but two solar eclipses. On October 14, 2023, an annular solar eclipse will travel from Oregon to Texas, encircling the Moon with a brilliant “ring of fire.” And on April 8, 2024, a total solar eclipse will travel from Texas to Maine, with the Moon surrounded by the Sun’s delicate corona.

Learn about these solar eclipses, where and how to view them, events, training, and more.

McDonald Observatory Invites Ecological Research as a Texas Field Station

McDonald Observatory is proud to become the newest member of The University of Texas at Austin Texas Field Station Network. This Network represents a collection of sites spread across the state that are used by the University for scientific research, environmental monitoring, and conservation efforts.

Department of Energy Awards Wootton Center Grant for Research and Education

The U.S. Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has awarded The University of Texas at Austin’s Wootton Center for Astrophysical Plasma Properties (WCAPP) a $6 million grant to continue its research and help train the next generation of scientists. This is the second time the WCAPP has received the award, bringing the total amount of NNSA funding to $13 million to date.

West Texas Businesses Preserve Night Sky–One Light Bulb at a Time

McDonald Observatory’s Dark Skies Initiative recognizes five West Texas businesses and public organizations for adopting night sky friendly lighting practices. The Alpine Visitor Center, Alpine Public Library, Marfa Visitor Center, RoadRunner Travelers RV Park in Terlingua, and Ghost Town Casitas hotel in Terlingua all worked with the Observatory to reduce disruptive lighting on their properties and help protect the region’s famous night skies.

Astronomers Confirm Maisie’s Galaxy is Among Earliest Ever Observed

Thanks to the James Webb Space Telescope, astronomers racing to find some of the earliest galaxies ever glimpsed have now confirmed that a galaxy first detected last summer is in fact among the earliest ever found. The findings are in the journal Nature. Follow-up observations since first detection of Maisie’s galaxy have revealed that it is from 390 million years after the Big Bang. Although that’s not quite as early as the team led by University of Texas at Austin astronomer Steven Finkelstein first estimated last summer, it is nonetheless one of the four earliest confirmed galaxies observed.

Work with the Stars! McDonald Observatory is hiring.

Work with McDonald Observatory

McDonald Observatory is currently hiring for positons located in Austin and at the Observatory near Fort Davis, Texas. Join our team!