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Title: Companion-driven evolution of massive stellar binaries
ABSTRACT At least $70\, {\rm per\, cent}$ of massive OBA-type stars reside in binary or higher order systems. The dynamical evolution of these systems can lend insight into the origins of extreme phenomena such as X-ray binaries and gravitational wave sources. In one such dynamical process, the Eccentric Kozai–Lidov (EKL) mechanism, a third companion star alters the secular evolution of a binary system. For dynamical stability, these triple systems must have a hierarchical configuration. We explore the effects of a distant third companion’s gravitational perturbations on a massive binary’s orbital configuration before significant stellar evolution has taken place (≤10 Myr). We include tidal dissipation and general relativistic precession. With large (38 000 total) Monte Carlo realizations of massive hierarchical triples, we characterize imprints of the birth conditions on the final orbital distributions. Specifically, we find that the final eccentricity distribution over the range of 0.1–0.7 is an excellent indicator of its birth distribution. Furthermore, we find that the period distributions have a similar mapping for wide orbits. Finally, we demonstrate that the observed period distribution for approximately 10-Myr-old massive stars is consistent with EKL evolution.  more » « less
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Date Published:
Journal Name:
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Page Range / eLocation ID:
2480 to 2492
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
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