(ORDO NEWS) — A team of NASA astrophysicists has provided the fate of entire planetary systems in the hands of the AI algorithm.
The system, dubbed SPOCK — from NASA astrophysicist and Princeton University Daniel Tamayo — doesn’t really decide which worlds will live or die. But she can predict the orbits of exoplanets and determine which of them will remain stable and which will collide with other planets or stars.
Since the discovery of the first exoplanet in 1995, scientists have identified more than 4,000 worlds elsewhere. More than 700 of them are in stellar systems containing more than one planet, the press release said.
“We cannot categorically,” Tamayo said, adding, “This planetary system will explode soon”. “Instead, the purpose of this AI is to eliminate all planets that have already experienced a collision and do not exist at present.”
Traditionally, this is a problem that scientists would use to try to simulate the next billion orbits of exoplanets and look for danger. SPOCK is a bit more elegant: it stops after 10,000 orbits and then trains the algorithm using the dynamics of that orbit. Over time, the system learns to predict collisions in advance.
“We called the SPOCK model — the stability of planetary orbital configurations — partly because the model determines whether systems will thrive,” Tamayo said.
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