Planets: K2-293b, K2-294b
Discovered by: Dattilo et al. using NASA's Kepler space telescope and a neural network, AstroNet-K2
Date: March 2019
Key Facts: Two new "super Earths" – planets larger than Earth but smaller than Neptune – were discovered using artificial intelligence.
Details: The new planets are called K2-293b and K2-294b. The first is about 2.5 times as big around as Earth, the second about 1.7 times. K2-293b orbits a star about 1,300 light years away, K2-294b orbits a star a little over 1,200 light years distant.
What’s new: The planets were spotted by a machine-learning algorithm called AstroNet-K2, a neural network modified to hunt through data from the Kepler space telescope's K2 campaign. The "deep learning" algorithm is able to separate real exoplanet signals from false positives.