Formation of massive close binaries I. Detached evolution

20 Aug 2018  ·  Sørensen Mads, Fragos Tassos, Meynet Georges, Haemmerlé Lionel ·

We explore the initial conditions that lead to detached binary evolution of massive pre-MS binaries and ask how large a fraction of the observed binary systems may have been initially formed as low-mass protobinaries and later undergone a significant accretion phase while remaining detached. We develop a family of analytic models to describe the orbital separation, $a$, and mass ratio, $q$, evolution... For a given mass accretion rate onto the binary system, we define a recipe for distributing this mass between the two components. For this we introduce a parameter $\eta$, such that $\frac{\dot{M}_2}{\dot{M}_1}=q^\eta$ at any time, to determine the binary mass ratio evolution. Depending on the choice of $\eta$, any type of mass ratio evolution is possible. Furthermore, we use MESA, a detailed stellar structure code, to calculate an extensive grid of binary sequences where a protobinary undergoes accretion, and we identify the initial conditions that separates detached from non-detached pre-MS binary evolution. A value of $\eta$ around 2 allows accretion growth in detached systems to form close massive binaries on the Zero Age Main-Sequence with minimum orbital periods down to about 1.2 days for $M_{\rm 1, ZAMS}=20-30M_{\odot}$ twin-binaries. $\eta=2$ can also reproduce the observed population of binary systems with primary stars above $6M_{\odot}$. The whole observed range of massive close binaries can form via accretion growth in detached systems, making the binary formation channel of accretion growth a strong contender to explain the formation of massive close binaries, including progenitors of coalescing binary black holes. read more

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Solar and Stellar Astrophysics