We obtain accurate estimates for the individual masses of the components of the tight binary system T Tau S to settle the ongoing debate on the nature of T Tau Sa, a so-called infrared companion. We take advantage of the fact that T Tau S belongs to a triple system composed of two hierarchical orbits to simultaneously analyze the motion of T Tau Sb in the rest frames of T Tau Sa and T Tau N. With this method, it is possible to pinpoint the location of the center of mass of T Tau S and, thereby, to determine individual masses for T Tau Sa and T Tau Sb with no prior assumption about the mass/flux ratio of the system. This improvement over previous studies of the system results in much better constraints on orbital parameters. We find individual masses of 2.73±0.31M☉ for T Tau Sa and of 0.61±0.17M☉ for T Tau Sb (in agreement with its early-M spectral type), including the uncertainty on the distance to the system. These are among the most precise estimates of the mass of any Pre-Main Sequence star, a remarkable result since this is the first system in which individual masses of T Tauri stars can be determined from astrometry only. This model-independent analysis confirms that T Tau Sa is an intermediate-mass star, presumably a very young HerbigAe star, that may possess an almost edge-on disk.
stars: individual: T Tau - stars: pre-main sequence - binaries: close - astrometry