French scientist Etienne Klein apologizes after posting image of star that was actually sausage

French scientist Etienne Klein apologizes after posting image of star that was actually sausage

The closest star to the Sun, Proxima Centauri, was captured in this stunning image by the James Webb Space Telescope, according to eminent French scientist Etienne Klein.

Other Twitter users were astounded by the picture’s finer features, which appeared to have been captured by the telescope that has wowed the globe with photographs of far-off galaxies dating back to the beginning of the cosmos.

“This level of detail… A new world is revealed every day,” he gushed.

However, as Klein later showed, the image was actually of a far more modest slice of the mouthwatering Spanish sausage chorizo rather than the interesting star just over four light-years from the Sun.

According to contemporary cosmology, no object belonging to Spanish charcuterie exists anywhere but on Earth,” he said.

The joke, which Klein, who has more than 91,000 followers on Twitter, said was just meant to warn us “to be skeptical of arguments from individuals in positions of authority as well as the spontaneous eloquence of certain images,” was misunderstood by many users.

But many Twitter users said they weren’t amused by Klein, the director of research at France’s Atomic Energy Commission and a producer of radio shows, at a time when combating fake news is of utmost importance for the scientific community.

He apologized to people who were deceived on Wednesday.

“I come to present my apologies to those who may have been shocked by my prank, which had nothing original about it,” he said, describing the post as a “scientist’s joke.”

Soon after returning to more secure territory, he posted a picture of the well-known Cartwheel Galaxy captured by the James Webb Space Telescope on Twitter. He assured users that the image was authentic this time.

The death throes of a dying star, interacting galaxies, and a stellar nursery where massive young suns are forming while blazing with gale-force solar winds that sculpt vast clouds of gas and dust were all depicted in other stunning “first light” images from the telescope released by NASA last month.

Webb is designed to study longer-wavelength infrared radiation, as opposed to Hubble, which primarily studies light in the visible region of the spectrum. This enables it to collect light from the beginning of the universe that has been stretched out by the expansion of space itself over the past 13.8 billion years.

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