Monthly notices of the royal astronomical society vol:362 issue:2 pages:619-625
We present the results of a detailed analysis of 121 ground-based high-resolution, high signal-to-noise ratio spectroscopic measurements spread over 3 yr for the beta Cephei star theta Ophiuchi. We discovered theta Oph to be a triple system. In addition to the already known speckle B5 companion of the B2 primary, we showed the presence of a low-mass spectroscopic companion and we derived an orbital period of 56.71 d with an eccentricity of 0.1670. After removing the orbit we determined two frequencies for the primary in the residual radial velocities: f(1)= 7.1160 c d(-1) and f(2)= 7.4676 c d(-1). We also found the presence of f(3)= 7.3696 c d(-1) by means of a two-dimensional frequency search across the Si III 4567-angstrom profiles. We identified the m-value of the main mode with frequency f(1) by taking into account the photometric identifications of the degrees l. By means of the moment method and the amplitude and phase variations across the line profile, we derived (l(1), m(1)) = (2, -1). This result allows us to fix the mode identifications of the whole quintuplet for which three components were detected in photometry. This is of particular use for our forthcoming seismic modelling of the primary. We also determined stellar parameters of the primary by non-local thermodynamic equilibrium hydrogen, helium and silicon line profile fitting and we obtained T-eff= 24 000 K and log g= 4.1, which is consistent with photometrically determined values.