Fountainwood OBSERVATORY

Southwestern’s large research-quality reflecting telescope was donated to the Physics Department by Max Allen, a local engineer and builder who was also an amateur astronomer. This instrument is used by faculty and students for research, and programs of general interest to the public are conducted each month during the academic year.

Spring 2016 Observatory Events

Sun and Moon data from the USNO website.

January 16th, 2016

  • Fountainwood Observatory Public Night
    8:00pm - 10:30pm

    Sun and Moon data: Sunset 5:52 PM CST. Astronomical twilight ends 7:17 PM CST. Lunar Phase: First Quarter, the Moon is above the horizon for the entire event.

    The evening viewing begins with a first quarter Moon on the meridian at sunset. Bright winter constellations laced with star clusters and nebulae wheel overhead. These and other celestial wonders will be available for public viewing through a variety of telescopes.

    On hand to guide viewing will be S.U. Physics Department faculty and talented observers from the Williamson County Astronomy Club. Regular Fountainwood Viewing Nights are always FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. The Observatory is located on the northeast side of campus adjacent to the Rockwell Baseball Field. For weather-related updates call the Fountainwood Observatory Hotline at 512/ 863-1242.

February 14th, 2016

  • Valentine’s Sunday Public Night at the Observatory
    8:00pm - 10:30pm

    Sunset 6:18 PM CST. Astronomical twilight ends 7:39 PM CST. Lunar Phase: 44% waxing crescent, the Moon above the horizon for the entire event.

    This is a weather related announcement for the Sunday February 14, 2016 Public Night at the Fountainwood Observatory. The National Weather Service is predicting mostly cloudy skies over the region. We are therefore recommending that you have a look at the sky cover just prior to your planned visit to the observatory. If the sky is heavily overcast then you should cancel your plans to come to the observatory because it is not possible view celestial objects through overcast skies. A crew will be on hand just in case of partially cloudy skies or hazy skies. However the viewing conditions will not be optimal. 

    Visit the Fountainwood Observatory on Valentine’s Day, Sunday February 14, for a romantic stroll under starry skies! The evening viewing begins with a lovely waxing crescent Moon high in the southwestern sky at sunset. On this evening bright winter constellations laced with star clusters and nebulae wheel overhead. These and other celestial wonders will be available for public viewing through a variety of telescopes.

    On hand to guide viewing will be S.U. Physics Department faculty and talented observers from the Williamson County Astronomy Club. Regular Fountainwood Viewing Nights are always FREE and OPEN TO THE PUBLIC. The Observatory is located on the northeast side of campus adjacent to the Rockwell Baseball Field. For weather-related updates call the Fountainwood Observatory Hotline at 512/ 863-1242.

April 15th, 2016

  • Yoga Under the Stars Fundraiser Event and Public Night - CANCELLED
    8:00pm - 10:30pm

    NOTICE: The Friday April 15, 2016 Fountainwood Observatory Yoga Under the Stars and Public Night Is cancelled. SU Men’s Baseball is playing a double header baseball conference and the field lights will interfere with observing. The first game is at 2 PM and the second is scheduled at 8 PM. Please consider attending our next Public Night Event. In the meantime, Go - Pirates!

May 14th, 2016

  • City of Georgetown Movie Night at the Fountainwood Observatory
    8:00pm - 10:30pm

    Sunset 8:18 PM CDT. Astronomical twilight ends 9:50 PM CDT. Lunar Phase: 60% waxing gibbous, above the horizon for the entire event.