Astrometric orbits of S stars
Institut d'Astronomie et d'Astrophysique, Université Libre de Bruxelles, CP 226, Boulevard du Triomphe, 1050 Bruxelles, Belgium
Accepted: 8 July 2005
Hipparcos Intermediate Astrometric Data (IAD) have been used to derive astrometric orbital elements for spectroscopic binaries from the newly released Ninth Catalogue of Spectroscopic Binary Orbits (). This endeavour is justified by the fact that (i) the astrometric orbital motion is often difficult to detect without the prior knowledge of the spectroscopic orbital elements, and (ii) such knowledge was not available at the time of the construction of the Hipparcos Catalogue for the spectroscopic binaries which were recently added to the catalogue. Among the 1374 binaries from which have an HIP entry (excluding binaries with visual companions, or DMSA/C in the Double and Multiple Stars Annex), 282 have detectable orbital astrometric motion (at the 5% significance level). Among those, only 70 have astrometric orbital elements that are reliably determined (according to specific statistical tests), and for the first time for 20 systems. This represents a 8.5% increase of the number of astrometric systems with known orbital elements (The Double and Multiple Systems Annex contains 235 of those DMSA/O systems). The detection of the astrometric orbital motion when the Hipparcos IAD are supplemented by the spectroscopic orbital elements is close to 100% for binaries with only one visible component, provided that the period is in the 50-1000 d range and the parallax is >5 mas. This result is an interesting testbed to guide the choice of algorithms and statistical tests to be used in the search for astrometric binaries during the forthcoming ESA Gaia mission. Finally, orbital inclinations provided by the present analysis have been used to derive several astrophysical quantities. For instance, 29 among the 70 systems with reliable astrometric orbital elements involve main sequence stars for which the companion mass could be derived. Some interesting conclusions may be drawn from this new set of stellar masses, like the enigmatic nature of the companion to the Hyades F dwarf HIP 20935. This system has a mass ratio of 0.98 but the companion remains elusive.
Key words: astrometry / stars: binaries: spectroscopic / stars: fundamental parameters
© ESO, 2005