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      英語世界
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      Five Reasons to Explore Mars
      發布時間:2021年03月01日     趙晨輝 譯  
      來源: 英語世界
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      Five Reasons to Explore Mars

      探索火星的五大理由


      By Darrell M. West

      文/達雷爾·M. 韋斯特


      The recent launch of the Mars rover Perseverance is the latest U.S. space mission seeking to understand our solar system.


      近期,美國發射了毅力號火星車,這是美國最新開展的太空探索活動,旨在了解我們所在的太陽系。


      Mars is a valuable place for exploration because it can be reached in 6? months, is a major opportunity for scientific exploration, and has been mapped and studied for several decades. The mission represents the first step in a long-term effort to bring Martian samples back to Earth, where they can be analyzed for residues of microbial life. Beyond the study of life itself, there are a number of different benefits of Mars exploration.


      從地球飛行6個半月即可抵達火星,因此火星極具考察價值,探索火星也是進行科學探索的重要機會,而人類繪制火星地圖和研究火星已經有幾十年時間?;鹦翘剿鞯拈L期任務是將火星樣本帶回地球,在地球上進行分析以搜尋火星微生物的殘留物,此次活動就是這一任務的第一步。除了研究生命本身,火星探索還有許多其他益處。


      Understand the origins and ubiquity3 of life

      了解生命的起源及普遍性


      The question of the origins of life and its ubiquity around the universe is central to science, religion, and philosophy. For much of our existence, humans have assumed that even primitive life was unique to Planet Earth and not present in the rest of the solar system, let alone the universe. We have constructed elaborate religious and philosophical narratives around this assumption and built our identity along the notion that life is unique to Earth.


      生命的起源及其在宇宙中的普遍存在是科學、宗教和哲學關注的核心問題。在人類存在的大部分時間里,我們一直認為,即使是原始生命也是地球獨有,在太陽系的其他地方沒有生命存在,更不用說宇宙了。我們圍繞這一假設構建了復雜的宗教和哲學體系,并根據生命是地球獨有這一理念構建了人類的身份。


      If, as many scientists expect, future space missions cast doubt on that assumption or outright disprove it by finding remnants of microbial life on other planets, it will be both invigorating and illusion-shattering. It will force humans to confront their own myths and consider alternative narratives about the universe and the place of Earth in the overall scheme of things.


      如果像許多科學家預期的那樣,未來的太空探索在其他星球上發現微生物生命的遺跡,以此對這一假設提出質疑或徹底否定,那將既令人振奮,又讓人幻覺破碎。人類將被迫面對他們自己編織的神話,考慮換一種方式去描述宇宙和地球在大千世界中的位置。



      Develop new technologies

      開發新技術


      The U.S. space program has been an extraordinary catalyst for technology innovation. Everything from Global Positioning Systems and medical diagnostic tools to wireless technology and camera phones owes at least part of their creation to the space program. Space exploration required the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to learn how to communicate across wide distances, develop precise navigational tools, store, transmit, and process large amounts of data, deal with health issues through digital imaging and telemedicine, and develop collaborative tools that link scientists around the world. The space program has pioneered the miniaturization7 of scientific equipment and helped engineers figure out how to land and maneuver a rover from millions of miles away.


      美國的航天計劃一直是技術創新極佳的催化劑。從全球定位系統和醫療診斷工具到無線技術和可視電話,所有這些創新都至少部分歸功于航天計劃??臻g探測要求NASA了解如何實現遠距離通信,開發精確的導航工具,存儲、傳輸和處理大量數據,通過數字成像和遠程醫療處理健康問題,以及開發將世界各地科學家聯系起來的合作工具。航天計劃開創了科學設備小型化的先河,幫助工程師們找到了從億萬英里外讓探測車著陸并加以操控的方法。


      Going to Mars requires similar inventiveness. Scientists have had to figure out how to search for life in ancient rocks, drill for rock samples, take high resolution videos, develop flying machines in a place with gravity that is 40 percent lower than on Earth, send detailed information back to Earth in a timely manner, and take off from another planet. In the future, we should expect large payoffs in commercial developments from Mars exploration and advances that bring new conveniences and inventions to people.


      去火星需要類似的創造力??茖W家們必須找到方法在遠古巖石中尋找生命,鉆取巖石樣本,拍攝高分辨率視頻,開發在重力只有地球上的40%的地方使用的飛行器,及時向地球發回詳細信息,并從另一個星球起飛。未來,我們可以期待從火星探索中獲得巨大的商業開發回報,以及給人們帶來新便利和新發明的科技進步。

       火星探索

      Encourage space tourism

      促進太空旅游



      The Mars program will help with space tourism by improving engineering expertise with space docking, launches, and reentry and providing additional experience about the impact of space travel

      on the human body. Figuring out how weightlessness and low gravity situations alter human performance and how space radiation affects people represents just a couple areas where there are likely to be positive by-products for future travel.


      火星探索計劃將通過改善空間對接、發射和再入的工程專業技術,以及提供更多關于太空旅行對人體影響的經驗,來促進太空旅游。弄清失重和低重力環境如何改變人的表現,以及太空輻射如何對人產生影響——對未來的太空旅行來說,這只是可能附帶產生有益影響的兩個領域而已。


      The advent of space tourism will broaden human horizons in the same way international travel has exposed people to other lands and perspectives. It will show them that the Earth has a delicate ecosystem that deserves protecting and why it is important for people of differing countries to work together to solve global problems. Astronauts who have had this experience say it has altered their viewpoints and had a profound impact on their way of thinking.


      正如國際旅行能讓人們接觸到其他地域的風土人情,太空旅游的出現將拓寬人類的視野。人們會明白,地球的生態系統是多么脆弱,多么需要保護,以及不同國家的民眾攜手解決全球問題為何如此重要。有過太空旅行經歷的宇航員說,太空旅行改變了他們的觀點,對他們的思維方式產生了深遠的影響。


      Facilitate space mining

      促進太空采礦


      Many objects around the solar system are made of similar minerals and chemical compounds that exist on Earth. That means that some asteroids, moons, and planets could be rich in minerals and rare elements. Figuring out how to harvest those materials in a safe and responsible manner and bring them back to Earth represents a possible benefit of space exploration. Elements that are rare on Earth may exist elsewhere, and that could open new avenues for manufacturing, product design, and resource distribution. This mission could help resource utilization through advances gained with its Mars Oxygen Experiment (MOXIE) equipment that converts Martian carbon dioxide into oxygen. If MOXIE works as intended, it would help humans live and work on the Red Planet.


      太陽系的許多天體都是由礦物質和化合物組成的,這些物質與地球上存在的礦物質和化合物類似。這意味著一些小行星、衛星和行星可能富含礦物質和稀有元素。想出安全、可靠的方法來收集這些物質并將它們帶回地球,這是太空探索可能具有的一個有益之處。地球上罕見的元素或存在于其他星球,這可能為制造活動、產品設計和資源分配開辟新的途徑。這項任務攜帶的“火星氧氣實驗”(MOXIE)設備可以將火星上的二氧化碳轉化為氧氣,這樣的科技成果可用于助力資源利用。如果MOXIE如愿正常工作,它將幫助人類在火星上生活和工作。


      Advance science

      促進科學發展


      One of the most crucial features of humanity is our curiosity about the life, the universe, and how things operate. Exploring space provides a means to satisfy our thirst for knowledge and improve our understanding of ourselves and our place in the universe.


      人類最重要的特征之一是我們對生命、宇宙和事物運行方式懷有好奇心。探索太空提供了渠道來滿足我們對知識的渴望,同時讓我們更加了解自身和我們在宇宙中的位置。


      Space travel already has exploded centuries-old myths and promises to continue to confront our long-held assumptions about who we are and where we come from. The next decade promises to be an exciting period as scientists mine new data from space telescopes, space travel, and robotic exploration. Ten or twenty years from now, we may have answers to basic questions that have eluded8 humans for centuries, such as how ubiquitous life is outside of Earth, whether it is possible for humans to survive on other planets, and how planets evolve over time.


      太空旅行已經打破了延續千百年的神話,并有望繼續挑戰長期以來我們對自己是誰和來自哪里的假設。隨著科學家從太空望遠鏡、太空旅行和機器人探索中挖掘新數據,未來10年將是一個激動人心的時期。從現在起,10年或20年后,我們可能會找到千百年來人類一直未能找到的基本問題的答案,例如生命在地球之外有多普遍,人類是否有可能在其他星球上生存,以及星球是如何隨著時間的推移而演化的。


      (譯者為“《英語世界》杯”翻譯大賽獲獎者)


      注釋:

       

      3. ubiquity 到處存在,普遍存在。

      7. miniaturization 小型化,微型化。

      8. elude 把……難倒。

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