BALTIMORE (WJZ)– Since the demotion of Pluto from planet to dwarf planet, our solar system is made up of eight planets. It turns out that number is no longer unique.
Another eight-planet solar system has been discovered orbiting a star 2,500 light years away called the Kepler-90 System. It was first believed to be made up of seven planets. Like all other exo-planets discovered, these have never been directly seen.
Instead the Kepler Space Telescope infers their existence by measuring the slight dimming of stars as planets pass in front of them; observations referred to as signals.
Kepler has collected 35,000 such signals, most of that data is still waiting to be analyzed, so an artificial intelligence program at Google took a look and was able to sift out the eighth planet in the Kepler-90 System.
Like earth, it is the third planet out from its star. But that’s as far as any similarities to Earth go.
“The temperature on the surface of this planet is about 800 degrees Fahrenheit, which is far too hot for the possible development of life as we know it,” astronomer Dr. Derrick Pitts said.