Ellipsoidal Variability of Red Giants in the Large Magellanic Cloud

We used the OGLE-II and OGLE-III photometry of red giants in the Large Magellanic Cloud to select and study objects revealing ellipsoidal variability. We detected 1546 candidates for long period ellipsoidal variables and 121 eclipsing binary systems with clear ellipsoidal modulation. The ellipsoidal red giants follow a period-luminosity (PL) relationship (sequence E), and the scatter of the relation is correlated with the amplitude of variability: the larger the amplitude, the smaller the scatter.

We note that some of the ellipsoidal candidates exhibit simultaneously OGLE Small Amplitude Red Giants pulsations. Thus, in some cases the Long Secondary Period (LSP) phenomenon can be explained by the ellipsoidal modulation.
We also select about 1600 red giants with distinct LSP, which are not ellipsoidal variables. We discover that besides the sequence D in the PL diagram known before, the LSP giants form additional less numerous sequence for longer periods. We notice that the PL sequence of the ellipsoidal candidates is a direct continuation of the LSP sequence toward fainter stars, what might suggest that the LSP phenomenon is related to binarity but there are strong arguments against such a possibility.

About 10% of the presented light curves reveal clear deformation by the eccentricity of the system orbits. The largest estimated eccentricity in our sample is about 0.4.
All presented data, including individual BVI observations and finding charts are available from the OGLE Internet archive.
Full resolution paper is available from the OGLE Internet archive.

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PLEASE cite the following paper when using the data or referring to these OGLE results:
Soszyński et al., 2004, Acta Astron., 54, 347.