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Huge canyon under the Antarctica? 南极冰层下可能发现巨大峡谷

在南极冰层下可能藏着一个尚未被证实的巨大峡谷。科学家们正在进行多种试验以进一步核实捕集到的数据,他们计划在 2016 年晚些时候公布试验的结果。科学家希望这些试验能帮他们了解冰层对未来气候变化的反应。以下是 Jonathan Amos 的报道。

For more than five decades scientists have been trying to draw an accurate map of what lies under the Antarctic ice sheet, which is more than 2.5 miles thick in places. Only a couple of regions remain unexplored, what the experts refer to as the 'Poles of Ignorance'.

One of these is a vast expanse in the east of the continent known as Princess Elizabeth Land. It's now the target of intense study and satellites have detected subtle shapes in the ice surface that suggest there could be a network of canyons hiding down below. If correct, the system would be more than 600 miles long and over 0.5 mile deep. There may be a buried lake as well.

Stewart Jamieson from Durham University led the research: "Knowing what lies beneath the ice sheet is important because we know that the shape of the landscape determines how the ice flows and responds over time. And so we'll be better able to predict how the ice sheet will respond to climate change in the future."

Airplanes are currently flying over Princess Elizabeth Land with sensors that can accurately survey the shape of the rock bed. They should confirm the presence of the canyon system.

词汇表

accurate 精确的,准确的
unexplored 未勘探的,未探索的
expanse 广阔的区域
satellites 卫星
subtle 不明显的,不易察觉的
determines 决定,形成,影响
sensors 传感器

测验

请听报道并回答下列问题。

1. How much of Antarctica is known to scientists?

2. What made scientists think there might be a network of canyons under the surface?

3. Why could the existence of canyons help scientists predict what will happen to the ice sheet?

4. How do sensors find out if there is a canyon beneath the surface?

答案

1. How much or Antarctica is known to scientists?
All of it apart from two regions they call 'Poles of Ignorance'.

2. What made scientists think there might be a network of canyons under the surface?
Satellites have detected subtle shapes in the ice surface suggesting the existence of canyons.

3. Why could the existence of canyons help scientists predict what will happen to the ice sheet? The shape of the landscape determines how the ice flows and responds overtime.

4. How do sensors help find out if there is a canyon beneath the surface?
They survey the shape of the rock bed.

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