|NGC 2304: Open Star Cluster (Gemini) RA: 06h 55.2m / DEC: +17° 59'.3|
Instrument: 10-inch Starfinder
The sketch at left presents NGC 2304, a 10.0 magnitude open cluster situated about halfway between Gamma and Zeta Geminorum. The drawing is based on a 129X view in my 10-inch, f/4.5 reflector. NGC 2304 is offset to the north. 6.8 magnitude HD 50974 anchors the southeast edge and a star of roughly equal brightness anchors the southwest edge. NGC 2304 does not host any stars brighter than about 13th magnitude. It appears as a 5'x3' irregular fog under direct gaze. The cluster emerges as a tightly packed collection of 20 to 30 faint stars using averted vision. Another 40 stars dot the field in my drawing. If you begin your star hop to NGC 2304 at 4.0 magnitude Zeta (43) Geminorum, slew southwest about 3.5 degrees to find this little gem.
Layout, design & revisions © W. D. Ferris
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Revised: January 27, 2003 [WDF]