The VLT-FLAMES Tarantula Survey: V. the peculiar B[e]-like supergiant, VFTS698, in 30 Doradus

P. R. Dunstall*, M. Fraser, J. S. Clark, P. A. Crowther, P. L. Dufton, C. J. Evans, D. J. Lennon, I. Soszyński, W. D. Taylor, J. S. Vink

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Aims. We present an analysis of a peculiar supergiant B-type star (VFTS698/Melnick 2/Parker 1797) in the 30 Doradus region of the Large Magellanic Cloud which exhibits characteristics similar to the broad class of B[e] stars. Methods. We analyse optical spectra from the VLT-FLAMES survey, together with archival optical and infrared photometry and X-ray imaging to characterise the system. Results. We find radial velocity variations of around 400 km s -1 in the high excitation Si iv, N iii and He ii spectra, and photometric variability of ∼0.6 mag with a period of 12.7 d. In addition, we detect long-term photometric variations of ∼0.25 mag, which may be due to a longer-term variability with a period of ∼400 d. Conclusions. We conclude that VFTS698 is likely an interacting binary comprising an early B-type star secondary orbiting a veiled, more massive companion. Spectral evidence suggests a mid-to-late B-type primary, but this may originate from an optically-thick accretion disc directly surrounding the primary.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberA50
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Be
  • Binaries: spectroscopic
  • Stars: early-type
  • Stars: emission-line
  • Stars: peculiar
  • Stars: variables: general

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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