A breathtaking solar eclipse image, believed to have been snapped from the International Space Station (ISS), went viral on the Internet recently. The image, however, turned out to be fake. The picture was a 3D rendering made by the artist A4size-ska on the website DeviantArt.

The image is not also new. It was created in 2009 with the help of a software known as Terragen 2. The Milky Way in the background was merely added later on with the help of PhotoShop.

The fake image made its rounds on the Internet on Friday, March 20, and it was shared by many on social media websites Facebook and Twitter.

The artist who created the image is not happy that the solar eclipse picture was used on social media websites without appropriate permission. The artist has also expressed concerns on the viral content on DeviantArt.

"It's extremely regrettable that my ECLIPSE was used here on Facebook without my permission," stated A4Size-ska. "I can't say what I have in mind since I'm not good [in] English."

The artist has also requested netizens to send through email any information on the websites that continue to use the said rendered image without permission.

The fake image may also strike viewers as being too good to be true.

Experts who analyzed the solar eclipse image pointed out that the Milky Way is located just above the horizon of the Earth, so it is impossible to view it with high clarity even from low Earth orbit, which is where the ISS is positioned. They also said that the alignment of the sun and the moon in the image does not make it appear as an eclipse of the Earth.

In truth, the astronauts aboard the ISS do enjoy an awesome view of space. The images they produce, however, seem less than magnificent, especially when set against an image like A4Size-ska's eclipse. The snapshots are nowhere near in beauty when compared to the fake rendered image.

NASA has recently shared some pictures taken by Samantha Cristoforetti, an Italian astronaut sent to the ISS by the European Space Agency (ESA), of the latest solar eclipse.

"Orbital sunrise and the #SolarEclipse... could it go any better?" said Cristoforetti, a crew member of Expedition 43.

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