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Binary Stars and Stellar Masses

  • Hannu Karttunen
  • Pekka Kröger
  • Heikki Oja
  • Markku Poutanen
  • Karl Johan Donner

Abstract

Quite often, two stars may appear to be close together in the sky, although they are really at very different distances. Such chance pairs are called optical binary stars. However, many close pairs of stars really are at the same distance and form a physical system in which two stars are orbiting around each other. Less than half of all stars are single stars like the Sun. More than 50% belong to systems containing two or more members. In general, the multiple systems have a hierarchical structure: a star and a binary orbiting around each other in triple systems, two binaries orbiting around each other in quadruple systems. Thus most multiple systems can be described as binaries with several levels.

Keywords

Orbital Period Spectral Line Triple System Proper Motion Semimajor Axis 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Further Reading

  1. Aitken: The Binary Stars,Dover 1935, 1964.Google Scholar
  2. Heinz: Double Stars,Reidel 1978.Google Scholar
  3. Sahade, Wood: Interacting Binary Stars, Pergamon Press 1978.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hannu Karttunen
    • 1
  • Pekka Kröger
    • 2
  • Heikki Oja
    • 3
  • Markku Poutanen
    • 4
  • Karl Johan Donner
    • 5
  1. 1.Tuorla ObservatoryUniversity of TurkuPiikkiöFinland
  2. 2.HelsinkiFinland
  3. 3.Observatory and University of HelsinkiHelsinkiFinland
  4. 4.Finnish Geodetic InstituteMasalaFinland
  5. 5.Finnish Geodetic InstituteHelsinkiFinland

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