Two New Planets Discovered through Artificial Intelligence


Photo by: Stas1995 via Wikimedia Commons


Technology giant Google and the University of Texas at Austin announced on Thursday, October 14, that they have discovered two new planets with the help of artificial intelligence.

The researchers explained that they have used one of Google’s algorithms to examine the thousands of signals sent by National Aeronautics and Space Administration’s Kepler space telescope and they have found two new planets which they have not yet seen before.

According to the researchers, they first have to train the algorithm on about 15,000 labeled signals from the Kepler space telescope data provided by the team of NASA. This assisted the technology to recognize a planet. During the test, the AI identified the signals that reflected planets and which did not with a 96-percent accuracy.

After they have conducted a series of tests on the algorithm, the researchers then focused on locating the signals covering 670 stars which they know to have existing planets. Then, that is where they located two new plants that they said to have not seen before. 

Google AI’s senior engineer Chris Shallue said:  “It’s like needles in a haystack.” Shallue and University of Texas at Austin’s astronomer Andrew Vanderburg claimed that they will continue the research to analyze more of the Kepler data on about 150,000 other stars.

“Machine learning really shines in situations where there is so much data that humans can’t search it for themselves,”Shallue adds.