Did you see a shocking picture of Proxima Centauri taken by the James Webb Area Telescope on-line this week? Sorry, you’ve been duped. The photograph doesn’t depict the closest star to our Solar; it is only a piece of chorizo.
This previous weekend, French physicist Étienne Klein posted(Opens in a brand new window) a picture on Twitter, and claimed the area telescope had taken the picture of Proxima Centauri, which resides 4.2 mild years away.
The picture seemingly exhibits the close by star’s crimson floor in a close-up view no different telescope has ever achieved. “This degree of element… A brand new world is revealed day after day,” Klein wrote within the tweet. Nevertheless, the French scientist later adopted up the tweet with two different posts(Opens in a brand new window) to say the picture was a prank supposed to warn folks about “cognitive biases.”
“In accordance with modern cosmology, no object belonging to Spanish charcuterie exists wherever however on Earth,” he added.
Klein wasn’t the one one to put up the prank picture. Previous to Klein’s tweet, Astrophysicist Peter Coles made an identical joke with the identical picture: “These #JWST pictures simply get higher and higher…” he wrote in his personal tweet.
Nonetheless, not everybody realized they have been observing a slice of sausage as a substitute of a star. Klein’s purported picture of Proxima Centauri was retweeted 1,700 occasions and attracted over 12,500 likes.
To cease the misinformation, Klein on Wednesday posted one other tweet, clearly stating the picture is a pretend (although the unique tweet stays). “I come to current my apologies to these whom my hoax, which had nothing authentic about it, could have shocked,” Klein wrote(Opens in a brand new window). His objective was to induce the general public to be cautious round pretend information.
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“I additionally assume that if I hadn’t mentioned it was a James-Webb photograph, it would not have been so profitable,” he instructed(Opens in a brand new window) the French publication Le Level.
Not serving to the matter is how astronomers have been sharing(Opens in a brand new window) actual photographs taken from the James Webb Area Telescope on Twitter, which might make it onerous to decipher what’s official and what’s not. So it’s all the time a good suggestion to search for the unique supply of the photographs. You too can observe the official James Area Webb Telescope account(Opens in a brand new window) on Twitter for the most recent captured photographs.
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