Evidence for prolonged main sequence stellar evolution of F stars in close binaries *
Space Telescope Science Institute, NASA, Baltimore, MD 21218, USA
Accepted: 22 January 2001
Binary F stars exhibit large brightness anomaly, which is defined here as the difference between the absolute magnitude from the uvby photometry and the actual absolute magnitude of the star. We have found that the anomaly inversely correlates with the binary components separation. There is evidence that the correlation reflects actual population differences between close and wide binary pairs, in which case it indicates that the anomaly is somehow associated with the interaction of binary's components. The anomaly has also been found to correlate with both kinematics and metallicity. The sense of the correlations implies that the anomaly increases as the star evolves, suggesting a peculiar evolution of a primary F star in a tight binary pair. This conclusion has further been supported by the study of the age-velocity relation (AVR) of F stars that are cataloged in the HIPPARCOS as single. Among these stars, those with brightness anomaly were previously shown to be most likely unidentified close binaries. We have found that the AVR of these binary candidates is different from that of the "truly single" F stars. The discrepancy between the two AVRs indicates that the putative binaries are, on average, older than similar normal single F stars at the same effective temperature and luminosity, which is consistent with the inferred peculiar evolution in close binaries. It appears that this peculiarity is caused by the impact of the components interaction in a tight pair on stellar evolution, which results in the prolonged main sequence lifetime of the primary F star.
Key words: binaries: close / stars: evolution
© ESO, 2001