Multiplicity of the massive stars in the Orion Nebula cluster
and implications on their formation mechanism
Th. Preibisch, H. Zinnecker, G. Weigelt, K.-H. Hofman, D. Schertl,
Contribution at the 33rd ESLAB Symposium
Star Formation from the Small to the Large Scale
ESA, Nordwijk, November 1999
ESA Special Publications series
(SP-445), in press (2000)
We present the results of a bispectrum speckle interferometric survey
binaries among the massive stars in the Orion~Nebula~cluster.
Observations of 13 bright cluster members of spectral
type O or B reveal 8 visual companions in total.
Using the flux ratios of the resolved systems to estimate the masses of
the companions, we find that the systems generally have mass ratios
Extrapolation with correction for the unresolved systems
suggests that there are at least 1.5 companions per primary star on
average. This number is clearly higher than the corresponding number
for low-mass primaries, suggesting
that a different mechanism is at
work in the formation of high-mass multiple systems
than for low-mass multiple systems.
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