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Milky Way’s family tree

Date: 28 November 2020 Tags: Space


Artificial intelligence (AI) has been used in creating the first complete family tree of Earth’s home galaxy, the Milky Way.



The researchers used AI to analyse large groups of stars with as many as million stars, orbiting the Milky Way.



  • With the help of the latest models and observations, the researchers managed to use the clusters as “fossils” to generate the history of galaxies.

  • To simplify the complex system, the team developed advanced computer simulations called E-MOSAICS to capture the formation of Milky Way-like galaxies, and then used this knowledge on specific groups of globular clusters in the Milky Way.

  • By applying AI on these groups of globular clusters, the researchers were able to predict the merger times of the Milky Way’s ancestor galaxies with high precision. 

  • The process also revealed a previously unknown collision between the Milky Way and an enigmatic galaxy, which the researchers named ‘Kraken’.

  • Over the course of its history, the Milky Way has absorbed about five galaxies with more than 100 million stars, and about fifteen with at least 10 million stars.

  • The identified ancestor galaxies include Sagittarius, Sequoia, Kraken, Helmi streams, Gaia-Enceladus-Sausage, along with the Milky Way’s main originator.


 Artificial Intelligence

  • Artificial intelligence (AI) refers to the simulation of human intelligence in machines that are programmed to think like humans and mimic their actions.

  • The term may also be applied to any machine that exhibits traits associated with a human mind such as learning and problem-solving.

  • The ideal characteristic of artificial intelligence is its ability to rationalize and take actions that have the best chance of achieving a specific goal.

  • The technology can be applied to many different sectors and industries. AI is being tested and used in the healthcare industry for dosing drugs and different treatment in patients, and for surgical procedures in the operating room.

  • Other examples of machines with artificial intelligence include computers that play chess and self-driving cars.

  • Artificial intelligence also has applications in the financial industry, where it is used to detect and flag activity in banking and finance such as unusual debit card usage and large account deposits

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