Astronomers have been tirelessly working to understand our planetary system. They use different technologies that help them understand the universe in a better way. They are now using a new artificial intelligence algorithm to find more about it. With the help of artificial intelligence, they have discovered 366 new exoplanets. It has been developed by a postdoctoral scholar at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Among the important finding made so far is a planetary system with a star and at least two gas giant planets. Each of them is around the same size as Saturn. They are located abnormally close to one another. It must be noted that Kepler Space Telescope has helped in the discovery of around 2800 exoplanets. It was in service for around 10 years.
The discovery has been mentioned in the paper that was recently published in the Astronomical Journal. The exoplanet is a term that is used to describe planets outside the solar system of Earth. So far there are less than 5,000 in all. And this makes the discovery of hundreds of new such planets a significant development. The study of these large numbers of exoplanets can help our researchers and scientists understand how exactly they are formed. Also, it will help them find out how orbits evolve. This will also explain several mysteries of our own solar system. “This is a significant accomplishment in many ways. But the most important is how it will illuminate features of the exoplanet population as a whole,” Erik Petigura said. Petigura is co-author of the research and astronomy professor UCLA.
The lead author of the paper Jon Zink along with other astronomers identified the exoplanets using data from the K2 mission of the Kepler Space Telescope. The discovery was possible because of the new algorithm that has been developed by Zink. The biggest challenge that researchers face in discovering new planets is reductions in staller brightness. The problem is that it may originate either from the instrument or from an alternative astrophysical source. This staller brightness mimics a planetary signature. Differentiating between them has been a very time-consuming process. It has been traditionally accomplished only through visual inspection. But the new algorithm is capable of identifying them. It can identify and indicate which signal is from the planet and which one is merely noise. The planet detection algorithm is a major breakthrough in understanding the population of planets. “I am sure this will sharpen our understanding of the process behind the formation of planets and how they evolve.”