Publications of Yaël Nazé
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See detailIntriguing X-ray and optical variations of the γ Cassiopeiae analog HD 45314
Rauw, Grégor ULiege; Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Smith, M. A. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2018), 615(A44), 1-19

Context. A growing number of Be and Oe stars, named the γ Cas stars, are known for their unusually hard and intense X-ray emission. This emission could either trace accretion by a compact companion or ... [more ▼]

Context. A growing number of Be and Oe stars, named the γ Cas stars, are known for their unusually hard and intense X-ray emission. This emission could either trace accretion by a compact companion or magnetic interaction between the star and its decretion disk. <BR /> Aims: To test these scenarios, we carried out a detailed optical monitoring of HD 45314, the hottest member of the class of γ Cas stars, along with dedicated X-ray observations on specific dates. <BR /> Methods: High-resolution optical spectra were taken to monitor the emission lines formed in the disk, while X-ray spectroscopy was obtained at epochs when the optical spectrum of the Oe star was displaying peculiar properties. <BR /> Results: Over the last four years, HD 45314 has entered a phase of spectacular variations. The optical emission lines have undergone important morphology and intensity changes including transitions between single- and multiple-peaked emission lines as well as shell events, and phases of (partial) disk dissipation. Photometric variations are found to be anti-correlated with the equivalent width of the Hα emission. Whilst the star preserved its hard and bright X-ray emission during the shell phase, the X-ray spectrum during the phase of (partial) disk dissipation was significantly softer and weaker. <BR /> Conclusions: The observed behaviour of HD 45314 suggests a direct association between the level of X-ray emission and the amount of material simultaneously present in the Oe disk as expected in the magnetic star-disk interaction scenario. Based on observations collected with XMM-Newton, an ESA Science Mission with instruments and contributions directly funded by ESA Member States and the USA (NASA), and with the TIGRE telescope (La Luz, Mexico). [less ▲]

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See detailA doctoral dissertation on a geocentric flat earth - "zetetic" astronomy at the university level
Nazé, Yaël ULiege

Article for general public (2018)

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See detail1543 : Des révolutions des orbes célestes
Nazé, Yaël ULiege

Article for general public (2018)

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See detailA Changing Wind Collision
Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Koenigsberger, Gloria; Pittard, Julian M. et al

in Astrophysical Journal (2018), 853

We report on the first detection of a global change in the X-ray emitting properties of a wind–wind collision, thanks to XMM-Newton observations of the massive Small Magellenic Cloud (SMC) system HD 5980 ... [more ▼]

We report on the first detection of a global change in the X-ray emitting properties of a wind–wind collision, thanks to XMM-Newton observations of the massive Small Magellenic Cloud (SMC) system HD 5980. While its light curve had remained unchanged between 2000 and 2005, the X-ray flux has now increased by a factor of ∼2.5, and slightly hardened. The new observations also extend the observational coverage over the entire orbit, pinpointing the light-curve shape. It has not varied much despite the large overall brightening, and a tight correlation of fluxes with orbital separation is found without any hysteresis effect. Moreover, the absence of eclipses and of absorption effects related to orientation suggests a large size for the X-ray emitting region. Simple analytical models of the wind–wind collision, considering the varying wind properties of the eruptive component in HD 5980, are able to reproduce the recent hardening and the flux-separation relationship, at least qualitatively, but they predict a hardening at apastron and little change in mean flux, contrary to observations. The brightness change could then possibly be related to a recently theorized phenomenon linked to the varying strength of thin-shell instabilities in shocked wind regions. Based on XMM-Newton and Chandra data. [less ▲]

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See detailMagnetic fields in intermediate- and high-mass binary systems with short periods
Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Alecian, E.

in Contributions of the Astronomical Observatory Skalnaté Pleso (2018), 48

Most stars of the upper HRD live in multiple systems. When the separation is small, interactions may occur, affecting the stellar evolution and feedback. The presence of magnetic fields here opens the ... [more ▼]

Most stars of the upper HRD live in multiple systems. When the separation is small, interactions may occur, affecting the stellar evolution and feedback. The presence of magnetic fields here opens the door to phenomena beyond the "usual" ones (mass transfer, wind collisions, tidal interactions,...) but it also put strong constraints on models of stellar evolution and magnetic field generation. This is why surveys of intermediate- and high-mass binaries with short periods have been undertaken. We will review results in this domain, including the properties of the (rare) detected cases such as Plaskett's star. [less ▲]

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See detailThe Of?p stars of the Magellanic Clouds: Are they strongly magnetic?
Munoz, M.; Wade, G. A.; Nazé, Yaël ULiege et al

in Contributions of the Astronomical Observatory Skalnaté Pleso (2018), 48

All known Galactic Of?p stars have been shown to host strong, organized, magnetic fields. Recently, five Of?p stars have been discovered in the Magellanic Clouds. They posses photometric (Nazé et al ... [more ▼]

All known Galactic Of?p stars have been shown to host strong, organized, magnetic fields. Recently, five Of?p stars have been discovered in the Magellanic Clouds. They posses photometric (Nazé et al., 2015) and spectroscopic (Walborn et al., 2015) variability compatible with the Oblique Rotator Model (ORM). However, their magnetic fields have yet to be directly detected. We have developed an algorithm allowing for the synthesis of photometric observables based on the Analytic Dynamical Magnetosphere (ADM) model by Owocki et al. (2016). We apply our model to OGLE photometry in order to constrain their magnetic geometries and surface dipole strengths. We predict that the field strengths for some of theses candidate extra-Galactic magnetic stars may be within the detection limits of the FORS2 instrument [less ▲]

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See detailA detailed X-ray investigation of ζ Puppis. IV. Further characterization of the variability
Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Ramiaramanantsoa, Tahina; Stevens, Ian R. et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2018), 609

Context. One of the optically brightest and closest massive stars, ζ Pup, is also a bright X-ray source. Previously, its X-ray emission was found to be variable with light curves harbouring "trends" with ... [more ▼]

Context. One of the optically brightest and closest massive stars, ζ Pup, is also a bright X-ray source. Previously, its X-ray emission was found to be variable with light curves harbouring "trends" with a typical timescale longer than the exposure length, i.e. >1 d. The origin of these changes was proposed to be linked to large-scale structures in the wind of ζ Pup, but further characterization of the variability at high energies was needed to investigate this scenario. <BR /> Aims: Since the previous papers of this series, a number of new X-ray observations have become available. Furthermore, a cyclic behaviour with a 1.78 d period was identified in long optical photometric runs, which is thought to be associated with the launching mechanism of large-scale wind structures. <BR /> Methods: We analysed these new X-ray data, revisited the old data, and compared the X-ray light curves with the optical data, notably those taken simultaneously. <BR /> Results: The behaviour of ζ Pup in X-rays cannot be explained in terms of a perfect clock because the amplitude and shape of its variations change with time. For example, ζ Pup was much more strongly variable between 2007 and 2011 than before and after this interval. Comparing the X-ray spectra of the star at maximum and minimum brightness yields no compelling difference beyond the overall flux change: the temperatures, absorptions, and line shapes seem to remain constant, well within errors. The only common feature between X-ray datasets is that the variation amplitudes appear maximum in the medium (0.6-1.2 keV) energy band. Finally, no clear and coherent correlation can be found between simultaneous X-ray and optical data. Only a subgroup of observations may be combined coherently with the optical period of 1.78 d, although the simultaneous optical behaviour is unknown. <BR /> Conclusions: The currently available data do not reveal any obvious, permanent, and direct correlation between X-ray and optical variations. The origin of the X-ray variability therefore still needs to be ascertained, highlighting the need for long-term monitoring in multiwavelengths, i.e. X-ray, UV, and optical. [less ▲]

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See detailN. Copernic, De revolutionibus orbium coelestium
Nazé, Yaël ULiege

in Oger, Cécile; Simon, Stéphanie; Thirion, Paul (Eds.) Empreintes, patrimoine ecrit temoin de l'histoire (2018)

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See detailB stars seen at high resolution by XMM-Newton
Cazorla, Constantin ULiege; Nazé, Yaël ULiege

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017), 608(A54), 1-15

We report on the properties of 11 early B stars observed with gratings on board XMM-Newton and Chandra, thereby doubling the number of B stars analysed at high resolution. The spectra typically appear ... [more ▼]

We report on the properties of 11 early B stars observed with gratings on board XMM-Newton and Chandra, thereby doubling the number of B stars analysed at high resolution. The spectra typically appear soft, with temperatures of 0.2-0.6 keV, and moderately bright (log [L[SUB]X[/SUB]/L[SUB]BOL[/SUB]] -7) with lower values for later type stars. In line with previous studies, we also find an absence of circumstellar absorption, negligible line broadening, no line shift, and formation radii in the range 2-7 R[SUB]⋆[/SUB]. From the X-ray brightnesses, we derived the hot mass-loss rate for each of our targets and compared these values to predictions or values derived in the optical domain: in some cases, the hot fraction of the wind can be non-negligible. The derived X-ray abundances were compared to values obtained from the optical data, with a fair agreement found between them. Finally, half of the sample presents temporal variations, either in the long-term, short-term, or both. In particular, HD 44743 is found to be the second example of an X-ray pulsator, and we detect a flare-like activity in the binary HD 79351, which also displays a high-energy tail and one of the brightest X-ray emissions in the sample. Based on observations collected with the ESA science mission XMM-Newton, an ESA science mission with instruments and contributions directly funded by ESA member states and the USA (NASA). [less ▲]

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See detailA 3U CubeSat to Collect UV Photometry of Bright Massive Stars
Desselle, Richard ULiege; Kintziger, Christian ULiege; Rochus, Pierre ULiege et al

in Journal of Small Satellites (2017), 6(3), 635-650

Following the amazing progresses in miniaturizing essential components of spacecraft, the last decade has witnessed an important development of nano- and micro-satellites. Beyond the mere technological ... [more ▼]

Following the amazing progresses in miniaturizing essential components of spacecraft, the last decade has witnessed an important development of nano- and micro-satellites. Beyond the mere technological experiment, these small satellites are now considered as important complements of much larger and more sophisticated probes to do scientific research. In this context we have conducted a feasibility study of a near-UV telescope on-board a 3U CubeSat. The scientific purpose of this payload will be to collect time series of photometric measurements of bright, mainly massive, stars down to an optical magnitude of V=5. This paper presents the optimized optical design of the payload and its associated detector. We further discuss the system accommodation and integration as well as a preliminary mission analysis. A photometric budget taking into account the characteristics of the target stars and the payload performances is also presented. With this feasibility study we demonstrate that it is possible to do a robust science mission using a very small satellite and for a limited cost. [less ▲]

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See detailX-rays from colliding winds in massive binaries
Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Rauw, Grégor ULiege

in The Lives and Death-Throes of Massive Stars (2017, November 01)

In a massive binary, the strong shock between the stellar winds may lead to the generation of bright X-ray emission. While this phenomenon was detected decades ago, the detailed study of this emission was ... [more ▼]

In a massive binary, the strong shock between the stellar winds may lead to the generation of bright X-ray emission. While this phenomenon was detected decades ago, the detailed study of this emission was only made possible by the current generation of X-ray observatories. Through dedicated monitoring and observations at high resolution, unprecedented information was revealed, putting strong constraints on the amount and structure of stellar mass-loss. [less ▲]

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See detailUp and downs of a magnetic oblique rotator viewed at high resolution
Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Zhekov, S. A.; Ud-Doula, A.

in The Lives and Death-Throes of Massive Stars (2017, November 01)

In 2006, the Of?p star HD191612 became the second O-star where a magnetic field was discovered. It provided a benchmark to understand the Of?p phenomenon as a whole. Ten years later, an X-ray monitoring ... [more ▼]

In 2006, the Of?p star HD191612 became the second O-star where a magnetic field was discovered. It provided a benchmark to understand the Of?p phenomenon as a whole. Ten years later, an X-ray monitoring performed at high-resolution reveals the behaviour of the hottest magnetospheric plasma: it is located at ~ 2R [SUB]⊙[/SUB], hot but not extreme (log(T) ~ 7), producing unshifted lines, and displaying a very repetitive variability. A direct comparison with simulations yields an overall good agreement, with only a few further improvements needed. [less ▲]

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See detailAn X-ray view of HD 166734, a massive supergiant system
Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Gosset, Eric ULiege; Mahy, Laurent ULiege et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017), 607(A97), 1-10

The X-ray emission of the O+O binary HD 166734 was monitored using Swift and XMM-Newton observatories, leading to the discovery of phase-locked variations. The presence of an f line in the He-like ... [more ▼]

The X-ray emission of the O+O binary HD 166734 was monitored using Swift and XMM-Newton observatories, leading to the discovery of phase-locked variations. The presence of an f line in the He-like triplets further supports a wind-wind collision as the main source of the X-rays in HD 166734. While temperature and absorption do not vary significantly along the orbit, the X-ray emission strength varies by one order of magnitude, with a long minimum state (Δ(φ) 0.1) occurring after a steep decrease. The flux at minimum is compatible with the intrinsic emission of the O-stars in the system, suggesting a possible disappearance of colliding wind emission. While this minimum cannot be explained by eclipse or occultation effects, a shock collapse may occur at periastron in view of the wind properties. Afterwards, the recovery is long, with an X-ray flux proportional to the separation d (in hard band) or to d[SUP]2[/SUP] (in soft band). This is incompatible with an adiabatic nature for the collision (which would instead lead to F[SUB]X[/SUB] ∝ 1 /d), but could be reconciled with a radiative character of the collision, though predicted temperatures are lower and more variable than in observations. An increase in flux around φ 0.65 and the global asymmetry of the light curve remain unexplained, however. Based on observations collected with Swift and the ESA science mission XMM-Newton, an ESA Science Mission with instruments and contributions directly funded by ESA Member States and the USA (NASA). [less ▲]

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See detailThe supergiant O + O binary system HD 166734: a new study
Gosset, Eric ULiege; Mahy, Laurent ULiege; Damerdji, Yassine ULiege et al

in The Lives and Death-Throes of Massive Stars (2017, November 01)

We present here a modern study of the radial velocity curve and of the photometric light curve of the very interesting supergiant O7.5If + O9I(f) binary system HD 166734. The physical parameters of the ... [more ▼]

We present here a modern study of the radial velocity curve and of the photometric light curve of the very interesting supergiant O7.5If + O9I(f) binary system HD 166734. The physical parameters of the stars and the orbital parameters are carefully determined. We also perform the analysis of the observed X-ray light curve of this colliding-wind binary. [less ▲]

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See detailInvestigating the Magnetospheres of Rapidly Rotating B-type Stars
Fletcher, C. L.; Petit, V.; Nazé, Yaël ULiege et al

in The Lives and Death-Throes of Massive Stars (2017, November 01)

Recent spectropolarimetric surveys of bright, hot stars have found that ~10% of OB-type stars contain strong (mostly dipolar) surface magnetic fields (~kG). The prominent paradigm describing the ... [more ▼]

Recent spectropolarimetric surveys of bright, hot stars have found that ~10% of OB-type stars contain strong (mostly dipolar) surface magnetic fields (~kG). The prominent paradigm describing the interaction between the stellar winds and the surface magnetic field is the magnetically confined wind shock (MCWS) model. In this model, the stellar wind plasma is forced to move along the closed field loops of the magnetic field, colliding at the magnetic equator, and creating a shock. As the shocked material cools radiatively it will emit X-rays. Therefore, X-ray spectroscopy is a key tool in detecting and characterizing the hot wind material confined by the magnetic fields of these stars. Some B-type stars are found to have very short rotational periods. The effects of the rapid rotation on the X-ray production within the magnetosphere have yet to be explored in detail. The added centrifugal force due to rapid rotation is predicted to cause faster wind outflows along the field lines, leading to higher shock temperatures and harder X-rays. However, this is not observed in all rapidly rotating magnetic B-type stars. In order to address this from a theoretical point of view, we use the X-ray Analytical Dynamical Magnetosphere (XADM) model, originally developed for slow rotators, with an implementation of new rapid rotational physics. Using X-ray spectroscopy from ESA's XMM-Newton space telescope, we observed 5 rapidly rotating B-types stars to add to the previous list of observations. Comparing the observed X-ray luminosity and hardness ratio to that predicted by the XADM allows us to determine the role the added centrifugal force plays in the magnetospheric X-ray emission of these stars. [less ▲]

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See detailThe quest for magnetic massive stars in the Magellanic Clouds
Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Bagnulo, S.; Walborn, N. R. et al

in The Lives and Death-Throes of Massive Stars (2017, August 01)

The Of?p category was introduced more than 40 years ago to gather several Galactic stars with some odd properties. Since 2000, spectropolarimetry, high-resolution spectroscopy, long-term photometry, and X ... [more ▼]

The Of?p category was introduced more than 40 years ago to gather several Galactic stars with some odd properties. Since 2000, spectropolarimetry, high-resolution spectroscopy, long-term photometry, and X-ray observations have revealed their nature: magnetic oblique rotators - they all have magnetic fields that confine their winds. Several Of?p stars have now been detected in the Magellanic Clouds, likely the prototypes of magnetic massive stars at low metallicity. This contribution will present the most recent photometric, spectroscopic, and spectropolarimetric data, along with the first modeling of these objects. [less ▲]

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See detailChemical abundances of fast-rotating massive stars. II. Interpretation and comparison with evolutionary models
Cazorla, Constantin ULiege; Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Morel, Thierry ULiege et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017), 604(A123),

Aims: Past observations of fast-rotating massive stars exhibiting normal nitrogen abundances at their surface have raised questions about the rotational mixing paradigm. We revisit this question thanks to ... [more ▼]

Aims: Past observations of fast-rotating massive stars exhibiting normal nitrogen abundances at their surface have raised questions about the rotational mixing paradigm. We revisit this question thanks to a spectroscopic analysis of a sample of bright fast-rotating OB stars, with the goal of quantifying the efficiency of rotational mixing at high rotation rates. Methods: Our sample consists of 40 fast rotators on the main sequence, with spectral types comprised between B0.5 and O4. We compare the abundances of some key element indicators of mixing (He, CNO) with the predictions of evolutionary models for single objects and for stars in interacting binary systems. Results: The properties of half of the sample stars can be reproduced by single evolutionary models, even in the case of probable or confirmed binaries that can therefore be true single stars in a pre-interaction configuration. The main problem for the rest of the sample is a mismatch for the [N/O] abundance ratio (we confirm the existence of fast rotators with a lack of nitrogen enrichment) and/or a high helium abundance that cannot be accounted for by models. Modifying the diffusion coefficient implemented in single- star models does not solve the problem as it cannot simultaneously reproduce the helium abundances and [N/O] abundance ratios of our targets. Since part of them actually are binaries, we also compared their chemical properties with predictions for post-mass transfer systems. We found that these models can explain the abundances measured for a majority of our targets, including some of the most helium-enriched, but fail to reproduce them in other cases. Our study thus reveals that some physical ingredients are still missing in current models. [less ▲]

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See detailChemical abundances of fast-rotating massive stars. I. Description of the methods and individual results
Cazorla, Constantin ULiege; Morel, Thierry ULiege; Nazé, Yaël ULiege et al

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017), 603(A56),

Aims: Recent observations have challenged our understanding of rotational mixing in massive stars by revealing a population of fast- rotating objects with apparently normal surface nitrogen abundances ... [more ▼]

Aims: Recent observations have challenged our understanding of rotational mixing in massive stars by revealing a population of fast- rotating objects with apparently normal surface nitrogen abundances. However, several questions have arisen because of a number of issues, which have rendered a reinvestigation necessary; these issues include the presence of numerous upper limits for the nitrogen abundance, unknown multiplicity status, and a mix of stars with different physical properties, such as their mass and evolutionary state, which are known to control the amount of rotational mixing. Methods: We have carefully selected a large sample of bright, fast-rotating early-type stars of our Galaxy (40 objects with spectral types between B0.5 and O4). Their high-quality, high-resolution optical spectra were then analysed with the stellar atmosphere modelling codes DETAIL/SURFACE or CMFGEN, depending on the temperature of the target. Several internal and external checks were performed to validate our methods; notably, we compared our results with literature data for some well-known objects, studied the effect of gravity darkening, or confronted the results provided by the two codes for stars amenable to both analyses. Furthermore, we studied the radial velocities of the stars to assess their binarity. Results: This first part of our study presents our methods and provides the derived stellar parameters, He, CNO abundances, and the multiplicity status of every star of the sample. It is the first time that He and CNO abundances of such a large number of Galactic massive fast rotators are determined in a homogeneous way. [less ▲]

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See detailπ Aquarii is another γ Cassiopeiae object
Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Rauw, Grégor ULiege; Cazorla, Constantin ULiege

in Astronomy and Astrophysics (2017), 602

The γ Cas category is a subgroup of Be stars displaying a strong, hard, and variable thermal X-ray emission. An XMM-Newton observation of π Aqr reveals spectral and temporal characteristics that clearly ... [more ▼]

The γ Cas category is a subgroup of Be stars displaying a strong, hard, and variable thermal X-ray emission. An XMM-Newton observation of π Aqr reveals spectral and temporal characteristics that clearly make this Be star another member of the γ Cas category. Furthermore, π Aqr is a binary but, contrary to γ Cas, the nature of the companion to the Be star is known; it is a non-degenerate (stellar) object and its small separation from the Be star does not leave much room for a putative compact object close to the Be disk. This renders the accretion scenario difficult to apply in this system, and, hence, this discovery favors a disk-related origin for the γ Cas phenomenon. Based on observations collected with the ESA science mission XMM-Newton, an ESA Science Mission with instruments and contributions directly funded by ESA Member States and the USA (NASA). [less ▲]

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See detailHow unique is Plaskett's star? A search for organized magnetic fields in short period, interacting or post-interaction massive binary systems★
Nazé, Yaël ULiege; Neiner, Coralie; Grunhut, Jason et al

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2017), 467

Amongst O-type stars with detected magnetic fields, the fast rotator in the close binary called Plaskett's star shows a variety of unusual properties. Since strong binary interactions are believed to have ... [more ▼]

Amongst O-type stars with detected magnetic fields, the fast rotator in the close binary called Plaskett's star shows a variety of unusual properties. Since strong binary interactions are believed to have occurred in this system, one may wonder about their potential role in generating magnetic fields. Stokes V spectra collected with the low-resolution FORS2 and high-resolution ESPaDOnS and Narval spectropolarimeters were therefore used to search for magnetic fields in 15 interacting or post-interaction massive binaries. No magnetic field was detected in any of them, with 0 G always being within 2σ of the derived values. For 17 out of 25 stars in the systems observed at high resolution, the 90 per cent upper limit on the individual dipolar fields is below the dipolar field strength of Plaskett's secondary; a similar result is found for five out of six systems observed at low resolution. If our sample is considered to form a group of stars sharing similar magnetic properties, a global statistical analysis results in a stringent upper limit of ∼200 G on the dipolar field strength. Moreover, the magnetic incidence rate in the full sample of interacting or post-interaction systems (our targets + Plaskett's star) is compatible with that measured from large surveys, showing that they are not significantly different from the general O-star population. These results suggest that binary interactions play no systematic role in the magnetism of such massive systems. [less ▲]

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