|Observation data: J2000.0 epoch|
|Right ascension||6h 41m|
|Apparent magnitude (V)||3.9|
|Apparent dimensions (V)||20′|
- the Cone Nebula,
- the Christmas Tree Cluster,
Two other objects are within this designation but not officially included:
NGC 2264 is sometimes referred to as the Christmas Tree Cluster and the Cone Nebula. However, the designation of NGC 2264 in the New General Catalogue refers to both objects and not the cluster alone.
NGC2264 is the location where the Cone Nebula, The Stellar Snowflake Cluster and the Christmas Tree Cluster are all included in this emission nebula. The Stellar Snowflake Cluster is located 2,700 light years away in the constellation Monoceros. The Monoceros constellation is not typically visible by the naked eye due to its lack of colossal stars.
The Snowflake Cluster was granted its name due to its unmistakeable pinwheel-like shape and its assortment of bright colors. The Christmas Tree star formation consists of young stars obscured by heavy layers of dust clouds. The combination of dense clouds and an array of colors creates a color map filled with varying wavelengths.
With varying youthful stars, comes vast changes to the overall structure of the cluster and nebula. For a cluster to be considered a Snowflake, it must remain in the original location the star was formed.
When referring to this nebula, there are detailed aspects that contribute to the prominent configuration of a snowflake or christmas tree, there is a diverse arrangement of brilliant colors, and an evolving process of structure.
- "SIMBAD Astronomical Database". Results for NGC 2264. Retrieved 2007-05-09.
- Image sig05-028 Archived 2006-09-07 at the Wayback Machine.
- Tom’s Astronomy Blog » Blog Archive » The Christmas Tree Cluster
- Nemiroff, R.; Bonnell, J., eds. (1 July 2002). "The Fox Fur Nebula". Astronomy Picture of the Day. NASA.
- NGC 2264 @ SEDS NGC objects pages
- NGC 2264 on WikiSky: DSS2, SDSS, GALEX, IRAS, Hydrogen α, X-Ray, Astrophoto, Sky Map, Articles and images