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New island may tell us about life on Mars 火山生成的新島可能提供火星生命的證據

文字稿

一座位于太平洋中的小島可能會為科學家提供火星上存在生命的證據。這座島嶼其實是一座水下火山露出水面的部分,恰恰是這座火山的活動為一些簡單生物的形成提供了可能性。而火星上也有類似的火山殘留痕跡。請聽報道。

Our planet's youngest island has a tongue-twister of a name: Hunga Tonga Hunga Ha'apai. It exploded out of a huge submerged volcanic mountain in spectacular style, throwing ash and rock into the air.

Since the drama of its birth passed, though, scientists have been fascinated by the story of its survival. As Pacific waves lashed at it, researchers expected the island to erode away in months. But almost three years on, it's still there – a windswept volcanic cone of about two-and-a-half square kilometres.

Its entire life so far has been recorded on satellite images, and the researchers studying it have since been able to visit the island, collecting rock and soil samples. Jim Garvin from Nasa has been there and explained that it was a rare template for understanding how similar looking volcanoes on the surface of the Red Planet may have evolved.

But scientists don't expect it to stick around forever: storm action should eventually dismantle it. But they estimate they'll have about two to three decades to watch it very closely before its demise.  

詞匯表

tongue-twister 繞口令,像繞口令般的
submerged 沒入水中的
lashed 沖擊
erode 侵蝕,腐蝕
windswept 受強風侵襲的
template 樣板,模板
evolved 逐漸演變的
stick around 逗留,停留
dismantle 摧毀
demise 消亡

測驗

請聽報道并回答下列問題。

1. Was the volcano that the island emerged from above or below the ocean?

2. Are scientists surprised the island is still there?

3. Which word in the article shows that scientists are using the island as a model for understanding Mars?

4. True or false? The island will last forever.

答案

1. Was the volcano that the island emerged from above or below the ocean?
Below. It was submerged.

2. Are scientists surprised the island is still there?
Yes. They expected it to erode away in a matter of months.

3. Which word in the article shows that scientists are using the island as a model for understanding Mars?
‘Template’. It's a template for understanding how similar looking volcanoes on the surface of the Mars may have developed.

4. True or false? The island will last forever.
False. Scientists don't think it will stick around.

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