My research involves the observation and study of WDs. For the most part, I conduct ground-based optical observations in order to study the different properties of WDs and obtain measurements of their fundamental parameters such as their surface temperature, gravity, and chemical composition. I'm also interested in pulsating WDs, WDs in various types of binary systems and WDs that harbor circumstellar debris disks.
As a postdoctoral researcher, I worked extensively on the discovery and analysis of extremely low mass (ELM) WDs. Contrary to their more massive brethren, these WDs are necessarily the product of the evolution of compact binary systems since the Universe is not yet old enough for ELM WDs to have been produced through normal single-star evolution. In fact, virtually all ELM WDs are found in short-period (P < 1 day) binary systems. This is a relatively new area of research and we are discovering many of the same phenomena seen in normal WDs but in an essentially unexplored mass regime. We have also observed several new phenomena that could only arise in such close binary systems. As such, the study of ELM WDs is really exciting as we try to understand the origin and evolution of a whole new population of WDs.