The evolution of classical novae
(With Mark Somers, Koji Mukai and Fred Ringwald.)
When a white dwarf accretes hydrogen from another star, the material
can build up as a degenerate layer.
The degeneracy means that when nuclear fusion begins, the result is a
Observationally this is a classical nova explosion.
When I became interested in the field the standard model was that such
a nova explosion had profound effects on the binary, forcing mass
transfer to stop and the system to ``hibernate''.
In a then heretical paper
(Naylor et al 1992
I pointed out how weak the evidence for this was, and then went on to make the
case that the effect of the nova explosion on the binary appeared to
(Somers, Mukai & Naylor, 1996
Somers, Ringwald & Naylor, 1997
Ringwald, Naylor & Mukai, 1996
Somers & Naylor 1999
In fact, the debate remains alive as to which scenario is correct.