Just recycling this text from the research page for now.

White dwarf (WD) stars are the final stage of evolution for stars like our Sun, and over 97% of stars in our Galaxy will eventually become WDs. These stars are compact, and can exhibit different kinds of "variable" behavior. Also, WDs can also exist in binary systems with various companions such as main sequence stars, giant stars, and even other WDs. For some systems, the orbital period — the time it takes one star to complete one orbit around the other — can be as fast as only a few minutes! The population of binaries with orbital period of less than 80 minutes is referred to as "ultracompact binaries" (or UCBs) since they have uniquely compact orbits. A majority of these systems contain two, low-mass (a few tenths the mass of the Sun) WDs; however, some of them are composed of a WD and another kind of evolved star called a hot subdwarf.

Part of my research involves active monitoring of known UCBs in an effort to track any changes to their orbital period (much like timing MSPs). Since UCBs have such tight orbits and have objects with strong gravitational fields, they produce gravitational waves that will cause the orbital period to get faster and the stars to get closer over time. Measuring this shrinkage is important for missions such as the upcoming Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (LISA). Currently we only know of about a dozen UCBs that could exhibit a change in orbital period due to the gravitational waves, so I also perform observations to find and characterize new UCBs that can be added to the list of timeable systems.