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托福TPO-31 Lecture 2(下)

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Well, over that length of time, forecasts become more uncertain.

经过那么长的时间,预测就更加不准确了。

But lots of geologists predict that eventually all the continents, including Antarctica, will merge and become one giant land mass, a super continent, one researchers calling Pangaea Ultima, which more or less means the last super continent.

但很多地质学家预测,最终所有的大陆, 包括南极洲在内,会融合为一体,形成一个巨大的大陆块,一片超级大陆,研究人员称为“终极盘古大陆”,意思差不多是指最后的超级大陆。

Now, how that might happen is open to some debate.

怎么可能发生那种事,人们仍无定论。

Some geologists believe that the Americas will continue to move westward and eventually merge with East Asia.

一些地质学家认为,美洲会继续向西移动,最终于东亚合为一体。

板块漂移学说.jpg

This hypothesis is based on the direction the Americas are moving in now.

这个假说是建立在目前美洲移动方向的基础上的。

But others hypothesize that a new super continent will form in a different way.

其他人也提出假设,一片新的超级大陆会以不同的方式形成。

They think that a new subduction zone will might occur at the western edge of the Atlantic Ocean.

他们认为,也许在大西洋西边会形成一条新的俯冲带。

Paul, can you remind us what a subduction zone is?

保罗,你能提醒一下我们什么是俯冲带吗?

Student: Yeah. Um...basically, a subduction zone is where two tectonic plates collide.

好。基本上,俯冲带就是两个构造板块碰撞的地方。

So if an ocean floor tectonic plate meets the edge of a continent and they push against each other, the heavier one sinks down and goes under the other one.

一旦一个洋底构造板块和大陆板块边缘相碰,两个板块会相互挤压,较重的板块会下沉到另一个板块的底部。

So the...um...the oceanic plate is made of denser and heavier rock, so it begins to sink down under the continental plate and into the mantle.

海洋板块由更紧密,更重的石块构成,所以海洋板块开始下沉到大陆板块之下,沉到地幔表面。

Professor: Right. So the ocean floor would kind of slide under the edge of the continent.

对。海洋底部某种程度上会滑到大陆边缘之下。

And once the ocean plate begins to sink, it would be affected by another force—slab pull.

一旦海洋板块开始下沉,另一股力量也会对此产生影响——岩板拉力。

Slab pull happens at the subduction zone.

在俯冲带会产生岩板拉力。

So to continue with our example... As the ocean floor plate begins to sink down into the mantle, it would drag or pull the entire plate along with it.

继续说我们的例子……在洋底板块开始下沉到地幔上时,它会把整个板块一起拖或拉下来。

So more and more of this plate, the ocean floor, would go down under the continent into the mantle. OK?

所以,此洋底板块越来越多地沉到大陆之下地幔之上,明白了吗?

So, as I said, currently the Atlantic Ocean floor is spreading, getting wider, but some researchers speculate that eventually a subduction zone will occur where the oceanic plate meets the continental plate of the Americas.

正如我所说的,最近大西洋海底正在扩张,变得越来越宽,但一些研究人员猜测,最终在海洋板块和美洲大陆板块相遇之处,会形成一条俯冲带。

If that happens, slab pull could draw the oceanic crust under the continent, actually causing the Americas to move eastward toward Europe and the ocean floor to get smaller.

若果真如此,岩板拉力会将海洋地壳拽到大陆之下,真的会使美洲大陆向东移动靠近欧洲,且海底也会缩小。

That is, the Atlantic Ocean would start to close up, narrowing the distance between the eastern edge of the Americas and Europe and Africa.

这意味着,大西洋会开始闭合,美洲东边和欧非大陆之间的距离正在缩小。

So they form a single super continent.

接着这些大陆就形成了一片单一超级大陆。

重点单词   查看全部解释    
affected [ə'fektid]

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adj. 受影响的,受感动的,受疾病侵袭的 adj. 做

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hypothesis [hai'pɔθisis]

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n. 假设,猜测,前提

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mass [mæs]

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n. 块,大量,众多
adj. 群众的,大规模

 
continental [.kɔnti'nentl]

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adj. 大陆的

 
predict [pri'dikt]

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v. 预知,预言,预报,预测

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slide [slaid]

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vi. 滑,滑动,滑入,悄悄地溜走
vt. 使

 
slab [slæb]

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n. 平板,厚的切片 v. 切成厚板,以平板盖上

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speculate ['spekjuleit]

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vt. 推测,好奇
vi. 深思,投机

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debate [di'beit]

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n. 辩论,讨论
vt. 争论,思考

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eventually [i'ventjuəli]

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adv. 终于,最后

 

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