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“第二个地球”要出现了?

2017-02-23    来源:scientificamerican    【      美国外教 在线口语培训

如果有一天,地球真的要毁灭了,那么我们就能用一下备胎行星了——以前只有太阳系的几颗,现在又找到了7颗!哪天科学家带我们去逛逛吧!

For planet-hunting astronomers seeking twins or even cousins of Earth around other stars, the universe has just become much less lonely.
对于那些一直在寻找围绕其他恒星的地球的双子星,甚至兄弟星的的航天学家们来说,宇宙现在没有那么孤单了。

Writing in Nature, an international group of researchers details the discovery of seven worlds comparable with our own, orbiting a star 40 light-years away in the constellation Aquarius called TRAPPIST-1. Three of the planets orbit in TRAPPIST-1’s habitable zone and the other four could also conceivably sustain liquid water and life under certain atmospheric conditions. All appear to be roughly the same size, mass and composition as Earth.
在《自然》杂志上发表的一篇文章称,一个国际研究小组详细描述了一个与地球差不多,环绕着宝瓶座中一颗40光年外的恒星的7颗小行星,并命名为TRAPPIST-1。其中3颗星在适宜人类居住的轨道上运行,另外4颗的大气环境中也可能还有液态水以及生命。这些星的大小基本相同,质量和组成与地球也类似。
 



For now the planets of TRAPPIST-1 are known only by their catalogue notations—TRAPPIST-1 b, c, d, e, f, g and h, labeled in order of their distance from their star. Soon that may change—the worlds will cry out for names as astronomers revel in their study and come to know them. TRAPPIST-1 is so cosmically close to us, so rich with promising worlds, that it is destined to be a touchstone for all future searches for habitable planets. And within a decade, some optimists say, studies of TRAPPIST-1 could provide compelling evidence for the existence of life beyond our solar system.
如今 我们对TRAPPIST-1 中的行星们的了解还仅限于它们的目录符号:TRAPPIST-1 b, c, d, e, f, g 和 h,这些标注是按照它们与恒星距离的远近来标注的。TRAPPIST-1离我们也挺进的,因此很有可能有另一番天地存在,这注定要成为后续的对适宜人类居住的星球的寻找的检验标准。有些乐观的宝宝们说,用不了10年,关于TRAPPIST-1的研究能够为太阳系外生命的存在提供充足的证据。

“This is the first time so many Earth-sized planets have been found in the habitable zone of a star,” says astronomer Michaël Gillon of the University of Liège in Belgium, leader of the TRAPPIST—for TRAnsiting Planets and Planetesimals Small Telescope—survey from which the star draws its name. (The survey itself is named for Belgium’s distinct variety of monk-brewed beer.) “For the first time, we won’t have only four terrestrial planets that we can study in detail—Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars. We now have seven more… We could be on the edge of answering the most fundamental question ever from a philosophical point of view, of how frequent life is in the universe.”
“这是我们头一次找到在这么多跟地球差不多大的星球,而且它们还在恒星的宜居带上,”比利时列日大学的航天学家、TRAPPIST(用于观察行星以及微行星的小望远镜)研究的带头人Michaël Gillon说道。该项研究能够让他们名垂青史。(该项研究由比利时多种的僧人酿造的啤酒而命名。)“我们头一次不再只有4个能够具体研究的类地行星——水星,金星,地球和火星了。我们现在有了另外7个……即使从哲学家的角度来看,我们快要能够解答最重要的问题:宇宙的其他地方存在生命的几率有多大。”
 

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