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Paper: Features of Nova Outburst Light Curves as Derived from Modeling
Volume: 490, Stella Novae: Past and Future Decades
Page: 309
Authors: Hillman, Y.; Prialnik, D.; Kovetz, A.; Shara, M. M.; Neill, J. D.
Abstract: The database for this study is an extended grid of nova outburst calculations, spanning several cycles, for a wide range of basic parameters: the mass of the accreting white dwarf (WD), its internal temperature and the mass transfer rate. For each case, one full typical outburst cycle is singled out and analyzed in detail. We find that, while the evolutionary timescales differ greatly among different parameter combinations, they share common features; all of our novae with low mass WDs (0.65 M) exhibit a sharp rise followed by a more gradual decline in the UV luminosity, prior to the eruption in the visual luminosity. This is because the expansion of the outer layers lags behind the rise in bolometric luminosity. This UV-flash may last between a few hours and a few days, and the magnitude change is between ∼1 and ∼3 mags. It should be easily observable, provided the nova event is detected early enough. A common feature we found for most of our nova models, is the well-known pre-maximum halt detected in many observed novae. We found these in the visual as well as in the UV band, for various time spans and magnitude changes. These features are due to restructuring of the envelope when convection starts and spreads outwards, and later recedes from the photosphere.
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