The search giant collaborated with the space agency’s planet-hunting telescope to find new exoplanets
NASA has used advanced artificial intelligence technology developed by Google to help it discover potential alien worlds.
Scientists have found, for the first time, an eighth planet (called Kepler 90i) in the Kepler 90 system — tying that solar system with our own for the most known planets in a system.
Kepler has confirmed that other stars can have a large number of planets orbiting them, just like our own sun.
This discovery was made through the use of a “neural network” AI program developed by Google.
The space agency revealed on Thursday that data from the Kepler Space Telescope has been analysed by researchers using the technology giant’s machine learning algorithm.
«Machine learning is an approach to artificial intelligence, and demonstrates new ways of analysing Kepler data,» said NASA.
Kepler has been reporting back to Earth since it was launched in 2009 and has made many discoveries about the planets beyond our solar system.
The space telescope has spent years combing the galaxies looking for evidence of extra-terrestrial life.
It hunts for planets by detecting the minuscule drop in a star’s brightness that occurs when a planet crosses in front of it, called a transit.
So far, its has identified 4,034 planet candidates, 2,335 of which have been verified as exoplanets. Of those, 30 are similar in size to Earth and orbiting in their star’s habitable zone.
With Google’s number-crunching AI skills involved, the team can move much quicker to identify distant worlds — some that may potentially harbour alien life.