The reason for presenting this review at this Joint Meeting, in spite of the fact that there was, a few days ago, a special Joint Discussion on recent UV observations is partially that somehow the general subject of close binaries was overlooked at the Joint Discussion, although unique close binaries, such as cataclysmic binaries and X-ray binaries, were included. There exist a large number of vigorous research projects being carried out with UV telescopes in the field of close binaries. I shall concentrate on IUE results, although other satellite and balloon-borne telescopes have continued to produce interesting UV observations of close binaries.
There are a number of active IUE programs on this theme. In the time allocated to this review I shall only be able to present highlights of selected programs in the hope of giving a glimpse of what is going on. The programs on close binaries from the first year of IUE operations include those by P. Conti, M. Hack, J.B. Hutchings, R.H. Koch, Y. Kondo and G.E. McCluskey, M. Plavec, and J. Sahade. In the second year, additional astronomers are also observing close binaries with the IUE.