Defending ourselves from meteorites 保護地球免受太空隕石的侵害

462
本集內容

Defending ourselves from meteorites 保護地球免受太空隕石的侵害

學習要點

有關 「space(太空)」 的詞彙

邊看邊答

Why are meteorites easy to see on the Antarctic ice?

文字稿

Do you want to find a meteorite? Well, here is where to look – out on the Antarctic ice. The pristine white surface makes meteorites easier to see.

你想找一顆隕石嗎?你可以在南極的冰面上試試!這裡一塵不染的白色表面讓隕石更容易被看到。

Alexander Gerst is part of a team hunting for rocks from space, which makes sense because he has spent a lot of his time up here.

亞歷山大‧格斯特是一個尋找太空隕石的團隊的一員。這件事情說得通,因為他在太空中呆過很長的時間。

He is a former commander of the International Space Station and has spent more time in orbit than any other European. But he is back on Earth searching for clues about the origin of our Solar System.

他是國際空間站的前指令長,在軌道上停留的時間比任何一位歐洲宇航員都多。但他已返回地球,尋找有關太陽系起源的線索。

His boss on the ice gives me a lesson in how to find a meteorite.

他的上司在冰面上,給我上了一堂如何找到隕石的課。

So John has found more meteorites than anyone else. So we’re going to simulate finding a meteorite – we’ve placed one on the snow over there, right? So we’ve been driving on the Ski-Doo. We’ve spotted it over there. What happens next?

約翰發現的隕石數量比任何人都多。我們要模擬找到一顆隕石的過程,我們已經在那邊的雪地上放了一顆隕石,我們一路騎著雪地摩托車過來。我們已經發現那邊有一塊石頭。接下來怎麼辦?

John Schutt, Antarctic Search for Meteorites
Well, the next thing we’ll do is walk over to confirm whether it is a meteorite or not.

約翰‧舒特     南極隕石搜尋計畫
「我們接下來要做的事情是走過去確認它是不是一顆隕石。」

So you’re not allowed to touch it, are you?

你們不能觸摸它,對嗎?

John Schutt, Antarctic Search for Meteorites
You don’t want to touch it – and we’re upwind of it too – I don’t want to drip my nose on it!

約翰‧舒特     南極隕石搜尋計畫
「你可不想直接觸摸它,而且我們現在是頂著風,我不想把鼻涕滴在石頭上!」

No, snot is the least of it. There are strict rules to ensure nothing contaminates the meteorites.

石頭上不能有鼻涕是最基本的注意事項。有嚴格的規定,確保隕石不被污染。

Most meteorites date back billions of years, right to the birth of the Solar System, so the research here helps us understand how the Earth itself was formed and it could also protect our planet.

大多數隕石形成的時間都可追溯到數十億年前,正是太陽系形成的時候,所以這項研究有助於我們理解地球本身是如何形成的,這項研究也可以保護我們的星球。

Alexander Gerst, European Space Agency
Everybody knows that the dinosaurs came to extinction because of the big, big asteroid crashing into Earth and that was long ago but nowadays, still we have asteroids hitting Earth. Sooner or later, a bigger one is going to hit us. They’re made of, in principle, the same stuff as some of these rocks that we find out there on the Polar plateau. If ever one comes straight at us and we realise that – well, we can only do something about that if we know exactly what it’s made of.

亞歷山大‧格斯特     歐洲航天局
「眾所周知,恐龍滅絕是因為有一顆巨大的小行星撞擊地球,那是很久以前的事情了,但如今仍有小行星撞擊地球。遲早會有一顆更大的小行星撞上我們。小行星的構成,原則上講,和我們在極地高原上發現的這些岩石的構成相同。如果我們意識到有一顆小行星向我們直衝過來,那麼只有知道它是由什麼構成的,我們才能作出相應的處理。」

For astronaut Alex, the rocks hold a personal significance.

對於宇航員亞歷山大來說,這些岩石具有個人意義。

Alexander Gerst, European Space Agency
You see things coming from outer space, zipping past you into the Earth’s atmosphere and that’s the weird thought when you, for the first time in your life, see a shooting star from above realising, hey, that thing just flew past me.

亞歷山大‧格斯特     歐洲航天局
「你看到來自外太空的東西從你身邊呼嘯而過,進入地球的大氣層,這是當你有生以來第一次看到一顆流星飛過上空時,產生的一種奇怪的想法,嘿,那個東西剛從我身邊飛過去。」

So his Antarctic trip kind of closes a circle. The astronaut has recovered the remains of shooting stars on Earth so we can understand our planet a bit better.

所以,他在南極尋找隕石的探索之旅暫時畫上了句號。這名宇航員在地球上找到了流星的殘骸,這樣一來,我們就能更好地瞭解我們的星球。

詞彙

meteorite 隕石

orbit (天體圍繞行星或恆星運行的)軌道

Solar System 太陽系

asteroid 小行星

shooting star 流星

問題答案

The Antarctic’s pristine white surface makes meteorites easier to see.