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Scientist Admits Fraud: Invalidates 'Distant Star' Supposedly Photographed by $10 Billion Telescope

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A French scientist is apologizing after admitting that he shared a fake image of a star that was actually a piece of chorizo.

Étienne Klein, a physicist at France’s Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission shared a photo on Twitter of what he said was the star Proxima Centauri.

Klein claimed the image had been taken by the James Webb Space Telescope.

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That device was launched into Earth’s orbit late last year, after construction that cost more than $10 billion, according to NPR.

The star is the closest star to Earth’s sun. But the reality behind the photo Klein shared isn’t light-years away from the human eye.

To the casual viewer, it looks like Klein could be sharing a photo of the star.

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However, some of his followers questioned the veracity of a purported space photo that looked almost like a piece of pepperoni.

Klein raised some questions about his own tweet when he responded to the image with a reference to “Spanish charcuterie” existing only on Earth.

Klein later clarified that the ground-breaking photo was nothing but a slice of chorizo.

The scientist finally issued an apology for the “hoax” on Wednesday, claiming he had staged the prank to prove a point about similar cases of fraud.

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Klein went on to distinguish between what he called a hoax and fake news in a subsequent tweet.

The real Proxima Centauri is further away than anything you’ll find in a food truck.

It’s around 4.2 light years away from the sun, according to National Geographic — although that’s close enough to earn it the place of the sun’s closest neighbor.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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