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posted by takyon on Thursday December 14 2017, @06:38PM   Printer-friendly
from the where's-planet-nine? dept.

Google's research team Google AI has applied machine learning to data from NASA's Kepler space observatory, finding an 8th exoplanet orbiting Kepler-90 (2,545 ly away). The team also found a sixth exoplanet orbiting Kepler-80 (1,100 ly away):

Our solar system now is tied for most number of planets around a single star, with the recent discovery of an eighth planet circling Kepler-90, a Sun-like star 2,545 light years from Earth. The planet was discovered in data from NASA's Kepler Space Telescope.

The newly-discovered Kepler-90i – a sizzling hot, rocky planet that orbits its star once every 14.4 days – was found using machine learning from Google. Machine learning is an approach to artificial intelligence in which computers "learn." In this case, computers learned to identify planets by finding in Kepler data instances where the telescope recorded signals from planets beyond our solar system, known as exoplanets.

[...] Kepler-90i wasn't the only jewel this neural network sifted out. In the Kepler-80 system, they found a sixth planet. This one, the Earth-sized Kepler-80g, and four of its neighboring planets form what is called a resonant chain – where planets are locked by their mutual gravity in a rhythmic orbital dance. The result is an extremely stable system, similar to the seven planets in the TRAPPIST-1 system.

Their research paper reporting these findings has been accepted for publication in The Astronomical Journal. [Christopher] Shallue and [Andrew] Vanderburg plan to apply their neural network to Kepler's full set of more than 150,000 stars.

The size of Kepler-90i is estimated at 1.32 ± 0.21 Earth radii. Surface temperature is estimated at 435°C (709 K).

Kepler-80g is likely smaller at 1.13 ± 0.14 Earth radii, with a cooler surface temperature of 144°C (418 K).

The outermost known exoplanet in the Kepler-90 system, Kepler-90h, has a mass under 1.2 Jupiter masses and a temperature of around 292 K (19 °C; 66 °F), so it may be a good candidate for hosting life on a moon.

NASA will host a Reddit AMA at 3 PM EST to discuss the findings.

Also at University of Texas at Austin.

Related: Seven Earth-Sized Exoplanets, Including Three Potentially Habitable, Identified Around TRAPPIST-1

Previously: Google and NASA to Reveal Mysterious New Space Find

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  • (Score: 2) by Freeman on Friday December 15 2017, @03:52PM

    by Freeman (732) on Friday December 15 2017, @03:52PM (#610321) Journal

    Wouldn't it be potentially more beneficial to focus on our Solar System and finding everything there is here? Not that it's not cool to know we can detect planets orbiting star systems that are 2,000 light years away. Unless someone invents a warp drive equivalent, anything outside our solar system is too far for us to be much interested in at this point. At least as far as potential interaction with said systems is concerned. I'm Christian and as such definitively believe that Aliens do exist. My ideas about Aliens differ quite a bit from most people's ideas about Aliens, though. Still, it would be cool to be able to visit planets and / or establish outposts / bases in our own Solar System. That's something that we could potentially do in my Life time. Which would be rather cool. Current means of propulsion would take many life times to get anywhere near a system that could potentially be hospitable. Assuming, a hospitable planet could be found in the system we aim at. 'cause unless I'm mistaken, pretty much all of the potentially habitable planets are purely theoretical. It could turn out that 100% of the ones we have detected are inhospitable. Personally, I think it would be awesome, if each system had it's own sentient species. The unique thing about us, is that we were made in the image of God. Again, random Christian thinking about potential possibilities. God, didn't create Humans first. He at least created the Angels first. What if, every other star system in the universe contains it's own sentient life. That would be mindbogglingly Awesome. Just my two cents.

    Joshua 1:9 "Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee"
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