|NGC 2286: Open Star Cluster (Monoceros) RA: 06h 47.7m / DEC: -03° 08'.9|
Instrument: 10-inch Starfinder
The winter sky is a haven for graceful and delicate open star clusters. Monoceros, the unicorn, is home to several, including this one. NGC 2286 is featured in the sketch at left, which captures a wintry gem at 129X in the 10-inch Starfinder Newtonian. The 7.5 magnitude cluster is nearly centered. The star that is centered is 11th magnitude GSC 4804:1766. Immediately to the southwest of this ember, a gauzy 5' diameter glow visible. This is the light from countless unresolved stars and it lies at the center of the cluster. Some 5'.5 south of GSC 4804:1766, two bright stars mark one extreme of the cluster. These are 9.7 magnitude PPM 703124, southernmost of the pair, and 10.2 magnitude Tycho 4804:3112:1, about 40" to the north. In all, about 30 cluster members are shown in my drawing. An equal number frame the view. You'll find NGC 2286 about halfway between 4.2 magnitude Delta (22) Monocerotis and 4.6 magnitude Beta (11) Monocerotis.
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Revised: January 27, 2003 [WDF]