MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WBOY) — Power grids, big or small, can run into failures for plenty of reasons, from weather to even cyber attacks. Recently, California experienced failing power grids amid record heat and devastating wildfires. One West Virginia University professor is putting in his time and effort to research how to prevent these potential failures.

WVU Lane Department of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering Chair Anurag Srivastava is doing multiple different studies to try and find the solution.

“The power grid here is the biggest manmade machine ever,” Srivastava said.

Srivastava sees certain power grids to be interconnected throughout the United States, so one grid’s failures could affect another grid in the country.

“In the grid, we have the butterfly effect,” Srivastava said in a WVU Today press release. “This means that if a butterfly flutters its wings in Florida, that will cause a windstorm in Connecticut because things are synchronously connected, like dominos. In the power grid, states like Florida, Connecticut, Illinois and West Virginia are all part of the eastern interconnection and linked together.”

Srivastava’s solution will take some time. He is getting assistance from WVU and other schools like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

“What we do is still scratching the surface because we will make some progress,” Srivastava said. “It will be four years, then [we’ll] put it in the field to make it happen.”