Ever you thought of a new zone of life beyond the stars or ever you thought of travelling far away from earth with the hope of new life somewhere else?
Well, these thoughts are not as new as you wonder. Artificial Intelligence’s approach is beyond our reach and maybe it would make it possible to resolve these questions related to likelihood at some other place far from earth. For many years, NASA is engaging in the search of these possibilities using AI and prominently finding the signs of life on planets other than Earth. As there is no need to remind you that the Universe is huge having a large number of planets revolving around there. Can you wonder that there are probably more than billions of planets in the universe from which how difficult it would be to analyze which planet or which body might have a likelihood environment? AI is making it possible for the researchers at NASA and with the help of AI, they are doing enumerable attempts regarding life on other planets in the Universe out of which Machine Learning is playing its major role. Let us take you to the quick recap of the progress of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning applications for NASA to visualize it better…
Here are few marvelous attempts of NASA using AI in search of the probability of life:
One of them is SELF-DRIVING ROVERS, something sounds like a self-driving vehicle? Exactly it is like that. The self-driving rover was landed by NASA on Mars, as early as 2004. Did you know, this technology was created for Mars, almost a decade back whose navigation is completely based on Machine Learning. It was further named as AutoNav as it was an autonomous navigation rover for Mars. It is observed that the AutoNav rover is still exploring mars, in search of water (as the only need for survival of any species is water) and the other factors that would make Mars compatible for life in future, and captures millions of images of there but communication is done hardly so the extraordinary Machine Learning analyses those stuff and send back few useful & informative pictures from them that are further inspected by researchers and scientists. But we have found no life on Mars but AI lit a lamp of hope that it might be possible someday as the NASA got some pictures through that rover (exploring there) that depicts the rocky structure of Mars. Now, you may think that what if a rover got hit by the rock? Well, if it is so then it would trap there permanently but NASA is managing all these.
Isn’t it sound cool that a machine is roaming and exploring a planet other than Earth and having no worries about human traffic over there!! This is what AI’s aim that is to create technologies, that are harmless and interesting. The data they have got through different planets are analyzed through the Artificial Neural Network that comes under AI. Plymouth University is working on it.
Let’s jump to one more attempt in this project i.e., ‘Probability Of Life’. You can imagine that there could be more than 100 billion stars revolving or being static in the galaxy out of which probably 40 billion may have life. NASA has a belief that one day they might reach the aliens. Till now, these are some of the planets that are known to be exoplanets and are in the compatible and habitable zone: Earth, Proxima Centauri b, Gliese 677 Cc. The recently discovered exoplanet by NASA is Kepler-452b (a rocky Earth-sized planet) which is in a habitable zone and with compatible known data. These planets are discovered using the transit method that scans thousands of stars for planets.
Now, what if you are told that it is not necessary that astronauts can be humans only?!! Don’t think to be fooled. The thing that you couldn’t even imagine is now turning to successful actions through AI. That’s why AI cannot be the soul of the body but it can be the hope, right? Here, NASA took that advantage of hope using AI and developed an unbelievable Robotic Astronaut that was known to be ROBONAUT. This was designed to travel in space with human astronauts and to help them in accomplishing the task that was found quite risky and dangerous for humans, more accurately. This robonaut uses Machine Learning to catch data and think itself and act accordingly. The remarkable efforts were made to design this astrobot to make it comfortable to deal with everything that may trouble it or will be the obstacle in their path of researches. The things that AI is marvelously doing, creates an enthusiasm in mind to study more about technologies, and according to the vision I have, “sky is not the limit of Artificial Intelligence, the only limit of AI is human virtual imagination and eventually interface with technologies, which are endless.” Here the deep learning and machine learning concepts are cooperating with the efforts of finding a new zone of life.
Have you ever observed in studies that if you got lost somewhere on Earth will get back to your place through GPS and doesn’t seem that you find any difficulty in it, but what if you lost the way of you destination on the moon? Is there any GPS to help you or an instructor to take you or guide you to your destination? The answer is no as there is no GPS or virtual guide on the moon to help a lost fellow. Got worried!! Where is AI, there is hope. A project is in progress that aims to provide a GPS facility even in the areas where it couldn’t be possible. This will not use multiple satellites or machines to support. It’s not as easy as you think but possible as several minds are working on it, the minds that created AI (that created technologies). That project has a Machine Learning concept as its base that feeds millions or trillions of data and then creates a virtual region of ANNs (Artificial Neural Networks), further it is analyzed and outcomes are taken. This is because a machine learning concept can make it possible to summarize data and optimize it well to provide a better outcome by comparing the newly found data from other regions in the space to the previously stored data. Researchers are still working on this project as it is not so perfect yet. Once it gets finalized it can be used on Mars to catch anybody if lost over there, someday (the day when there will be life). They have the support of AI that provides them the hope of getting the aspired outcome/result.
Now, hoping for the day when a new likelihood will be somewhere on the other planets in the universe.
About the author: Miss Palak Gupta, an alumni of 2nd year B.Tech-CS (AIML) at GLA University.