SAN ANTONIO -- Understanding weather in space might have gotten a little bit easier thanks to the work of one San Antonio scientist.
"It's not just one paper, it's a project we've been doing here for the last 10 years," scientist George Livadiotis said.
Livadiotis is a scientist at Southwest Research Institute. About a decade ago he and his family moved from Greece to San Antonio so he could continue his work.
His recently published findings shed light on the role of thermodynamics -- the branch of physics dealing with heat and temperature and how it can be measured in space.
"We can apply thermodynamics not only as we know it here on Earth, but in space," he said.
Livadiotis says things are different in space -- not empty, but instead filled with plasma which consists of electrically charged particles that behave like a gas. His research can help predict the physics behind space weather events.
"Like solar flares, which are large explosions of electromagnetic radiation. Extreme space weather events can cause huge damage to our infrastructure for example the electric grid or yes the communication satellites. This could fry Earth, but what's protecting us, the magnetic shield," he said.
Southwest Research Institute has developed instruments that have been on spacecrafts to help monitor weather and conditions in space, but now with this latest research, he hopes they can be better prepared from down here.
"It provides the physical interpretation of more than half a century of space weather and observations that could not be explained with the standard classical physics," Livadiotis said.
More than a decade of work, shedding light into space.