Antonio Manaytay – Fourth Estate Contributor
Austin, TX, United States (4E) – A Sun-like star system some 2,545 light-years away have an eighth planet circling it every 14.4 days. The discovery came after an artificial intelligence discovered it from the data of NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope.
Google’s machine learning, an artificial intelligence where computers “learn,” was instrumental in identifying a planet when Kepler data indicated changes in starlight due to exoplanets.
“Just as we expected, there are exciting discoveries lurking in our archived Kepler data, waiting for the right tool or technology to unearth them,” Paul Hertz, director of NASA’s Astrophysics Division in Washington, said.
The recent finding of a new planet, named Kepler-90i, orbiting Kepler-90 had demonstrated that Kepler data is “a treasure trove available to innovative researchers for years to come.”
The discovery of Kepler-90i, a sizzling hot, rocky planet, had brought the number of planets orbiting a star system to eight tying the number of planets the solar system has.
Researchers Christopher Shallue and Andrew Vanderburg used the machine learning to read the light readings by Kepler. The artificial intelligence sifted through the data and analyzed the minuscule change in brightness captured when an exoplanet passes in front of a star that led to the discovery of the new planet.
“The Kepler-90 star system is like a mini version of our solar system. You have small planets inside and big planets outside, but everything is scrunched in much closer,” Vanderburg, an astronomer at the University of Texas Austin and a Sagan post-doctoral fellow at NASA, said.
The use of machine learning to “learn” something from the massive Kepler data has been increasing and marked a shift how researchers could be aided by artificial intelligence.
Other systems are more promising for life to exist than Kepler-90. Kepler-90i, however, is not habitable. Its surface temperature is estimated at 800 degrees Fahrenheit, a temperature that is at par with Mercury in the solar system. The outermost member of the star system, Kepler-90h, orbits around its star at a distance similar to Earth’s distance from the Sun.
Article – All Rights Reserved.
Provided by FeedSyndicate