White dwarf-companion star binaries can have explosive relationships. They begin with a hibernation phase, where the companion sends a whisper of mass to the white dwarf as a stream of hydrogen. The white dwarf cyclically brightens and dims and then awakes, erupting in a nova, a stellar nuclear explosion on its surface causing the white dwarf to get far brighter, and the companion sends even more mass over. The process slows and eventually starts all over again.
A team of Polish scientist