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宇宙中最奇怪的星 – 译学馆
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宇宙中最奇怪的星

The Strangest Star In The Universe

每个在这个星球上生活的人都见过流星
Every person who lives on this planet has seen a falling star,
其亦被称作陨落的恒星
also known as a shooting star.
我承认 我曾完全相信流星的发生
I confess, I sincerely believed such was the case that
实际上是因为流星就是恒星 就像我曾相信过圣诞老人的存在
these were in fact stars, much like I believed in Santa Claus.
但随即我听说了那个令人震惊的事实 流星实际上并不是恒星
But then I heard the shocking truth–these are not in fact stars.
当凝视着夜空中闪烁的虚无
When peering into the sparkling emptiness of the night sky,
我仿佛看到一个数十亿年前的流星体
I watched as another meteoric body for the umpteen billionth of time,
奋力撞击地球的大气层
try to ramp through the Earth’s atmosphere.
这种事情每天都有发生
This happens constantly day in and day out.
每天都有上百万的宇宙天体猛撞在我们星球的表面上
Millions of cosmic bodies hurl themselves towards the surface of our planet everyday.
但事实上,并没有任何极其特别的事情发生
Really, there is nothing very special going on here.
所以 尽管惯用语
So, despite the apparent absurdity of the phrase:
看啊 陨落的恒星 显然是荒唐的
look, look, a falling star!
却也证明了宇宙中确实存在着真正的陨落的恒星
it turns out that real falling stars do exist in our universe.
先生们女士们 请系紧您的安全带
Fasten your seatbelts, ladies and gentlemen.
我们将再一次启程进入外太空
Once again we set off into deep space.
邂逅米拉
Meet Mira
或亦可以称作
or, it is also called
鲸鱼星座
Omicron Ceti
这是一个直径比太阳的大700倍的巨大恒星
a sizeable star. It is 700 times larger than the diameter of our Sun.
比我们最新一期科学杂志中的英雄猎户座恒星
It is an even stranger and more surprising star than Betelgeuse,
更加奇怪和令人惊喜
the heroine from our last installment.
对这个美妙事物的最早记载是在公元前134年的希巴克斯
The first mention of this beauty is found in Hipparchus in 134 BC,
在1070年中国宇航员同样也有发现
as well as in the testimonies of Chinese astronomers later in the year 1070.
但是其几乎超自然的特性直到最近才被发现
But its almost supernatural properties were discovered only recently.
牧师 天文学家 大卫·法布里奇乌斯
Pastor, astronomer, David Fabricius,
非常机缘巧合且不可思议地
quite by chance and without realizing it,
在1596的八月13号的早上发现了一种新类型的恒星
discovered a new type of star on the morning of August 13th,1596.
当时他只是在看火星
At that time, he was just watching Mercury.
准确地说他正准备测量火星附近
Or rather, he was going to measure the angular distance
一颗闪耀在萨提斯星座中的
from the planet to the star glittering nearby
显然是三级星等的恒星的角度距离
at an apparent magnitude of 3 in the constellation of Satis.
有趣的是 他在这之前从未看到过
Interestingly, he had never come across it before,
而且引人注意的是这颗恒星不在任何星球仪和地图上
and it was also notably absent from all the stellar maps and globes.
尽管以前的地图和星球仪肯定是不如现今的精确
Though of course, maps and globes were not as accurate in ye olden days.
且普遍忽视一些不是那么亮的恒星
And the disregard for some not very bright star was commonplace.
法布里修斯开始密切注意这个陌生的天体
Fabricius began to keep an eye on the stranger,
却想不到最终它的亮度上升到了2级星等
and lo and behold its brilliance grew right up to a magnitude of 2,
并在那年的八月底成为了其星座中最亮的一颗星
and it became the brightest star in its constellation by the end of that August.
但在紧接着的九月份里 这颗恒星逐渐变暗了
But then in September, the star faded,
到十月中旬 它已经完全消失了
and by mid-October, it had disappeared completely.
法布里齐亚十分确信这是一个与众不同的新恒星
In full confidence that this was a different new star,
因此他停止了观察
Fabrizia stopped observing.
但出乎他意料的是 在13年后的1609年的二月15号
But to his great surprise, he came across this mysterious traveler,
他再次与这个神秘的旅行者相遇
thirteen years later on February 15th, 1609.
但说句公道话 天文学家约翰·贝尔早在六年前的1603年
But to be fair, astronomer Johann Beier managed to notice it
就注意到了它
about six years before this in 1603.
他在他最著名的地图集里加入了这部分资料
He entered the data into his famous star atlas,
却没有怀疑过
but had not yet suspected these super properties of his five.
顺带说一句 这个恒星在当时已经达到了四级星等
By the way, by that time, the star had already reached a stellar magnitude of 4.
世界各地的各类天文学家都在接下来的数十年
Various astronomers from around the world began to closely monitor
密切跟踪这个奥密克戎天体
Omicron Ceti for the next several decades.
就比如在1659年到1682年观察这个天体
So, for example, the Polish astronomer Jan Hevelius,
的波兰天文学家詹·赫维留
who observed the stellar body from 1659 to 1682,
称其为米拉 在拉丁文中解释为 令人惊叹的
called it Mira, which is from Latin, and translates as “amazing”.
显然他是正确的 这颗恒星确实令人惊叹
And he was absolutely right, this star is amazing.
它通常过于暗淡以至于用业余小望远镜都很难看清
Usually, it is so dim that is quite diffcult to see with even a small amateur telescope.
但因为其独特性 它会在特定的时段 寒峰 里
But due to its peculiarity, it becomes the brightest star in the constellation Cetus
成为星座中最亮的一颗星 接着又逐渐黯淡
at certain times,the so-cold peak. Then it fades again
变得几乎不可见
and becomes almost invisable,
一次又一次 一切都在重复
and then it again and again and again, everything repeats.
最终 科学家们在通过经历了很长一段时间的
Scientists finally, by the middle of the 17th century,
亮度和角度距离的庞大计算后
established that this miracle represented a new type of valuable star
于17世纪中期确定了这件奇事象征了一种重要的新型恒星
with a very long period of brightness and a very large amplitude.
简而言之 米拉是一颗不断变化亮度
To put it simply, Mira is a star that constantly changes its brightness,
且变化得较有规律的恒星
but it happens with a fair bit of irregularity.
对于不了解的人来说
The glitter of a star,
一颗恒星的星等
for those who do not know, is its apparent stellar magnitude, the same as luminosity,
或者更简单地说 辉度 代表了其亮度
or even simpler, brightness.
根据天文学的标尺 恒星愈小愈亮
Using the astronomical scale, smaller numbers are brighter.
米拉的亮度能在区区332天内
The brightness of Mira increases three and a half times
增加3.5倍
in just 332 days.
当它从十级星等升到二级星等 成为了其星座中最亮的一颗星时
From a brightness of magnitude 10, when it is almost invisable in the telescope,
已经几乎无法从望远镜中看到
up to a magnitude of 2, when it becomes the brightest in its constellation.
正如我说过的 它的表现没有固定模式 事实上
As I said, there is no pattern to her behavior. As a matter of fact,
其亮度变化的时期和区间变化莫测
the period and range of brightness changes and is completely unstable.
有一次 奥密克戎天体从相当黑的九级星等
One time, Omicron Ceti went from the relatively dark 9th magnitude,
上升到了五级星等然后又降了回去
and then increased to the 5th and then back again,
又有一次它逐渐降到了十级星等
anther time she faded to the 10th magnitude
下一刻却上升到了它最亮时的二星等
but then shut up to her maximum brightest magnitude of 2.
正如你所能看到的 其发光度的不稳定性简直是巨大的
As you can see, the fluctuations in luminosity are simply immense.
但这都意味着什么呢
But what does all this mean?
奥密克戎天体 亦称米拉 最暗时
The luminosity of Omicron Ceti aka Mira
其发光度也几乎与我们的太阳相同
at the minimum of its brightness almost corresponds,
即使会稍微暗一点
or is even slightly less than the luminosity of our Sun.
那就意味着 米拉的最高亮度
That means then, that at the maximum, the brightness of Mira
将会超过太阳的亮度700倍
will surpass that of our Sun by seven hundred times.
甚至有时会是太阳的1500倍
And sometimes, by as much as 1500 times the brightness of our Sun.
这一点的精髓是 当红色的巨无霸脉动变化
The whole point of this is this: when red giant pulsate, the temperature
其表面温度升高
of their surface also changes,
直接影响到恒星大气的光学性质
which immediately effects the optical properties of the stellar atmosphere;
伴随着温度的上升 化学化合物分解
as the temperature rises, the chemical compounds decompose,
而且大气变得更透明
and the atmosphere becomes more transparent.
大量的氢气也扮演了一个重要作用
Also, a considerable role is taken by hot hydrogen masses,
氢气在米拉最高亮度时爆发成大气
which erupt into the atmosphere during the periods of maximum brightness,
又进一步增强了恒星的亮度 至少这是我能够找出的
and further increase the brightness of the star. At least this is the most plausible explaination,
对于经常发生在米拉天体上的奇妙变化的最可信的解释了
which I managed to unearth of the amazing changes that regularly occur with Mira Ceti.
但仍然还有许多解释
And still, there is something more.
在1919年科学家们注意到了
Scientists noticed in 1919
另一种与米拉的光谱重叠的光谱
that a second spectrum was superimposed over the Mira sepctrum,
它属于一个非常非常炎热的白色恒星
and it belongs to a very very hot white star,
一颗卫星于四年后在离米拉非常近的地方被找到
A satellite was discovered very close to Mira four years later.
这颗炎热的小星星是一个被称作米拉B的白矮星
This hot little star is a white dwarf called Mira B,
顺便提一下 它可以说是靠着比它大多了的邻居为生
which, by the way, literally feeds on its much larger neighbour.
小米拉B每400年才绕着巨大的米拉A运行一次
Little Mira B orbits the giant Mira A only once every 400 years,
因此 这颗星星自从法布里修斯时期
and therefore the satellite has made just one complete revolution around Mira A
只完整地绕米拉A旋转过一次
since the time of Fabricius.
从主星到白矮星的运行轨道的平均距离
The average distance from the main star to the orbit of the white dwarf
大约为70个天文单位
is about 70 astronomical units.
换句话说
That is to say,
也就是地球到太阳的距离的七十倍
70 times the average distance from the Earth to the Sun.
最有意思的是 这个白矮星和它更加体态丰满的友邦
And the most interesting thing is that this little dwarf star has similar properties
有着相似的性质 白矮星也经常改变亮度
to her much more voluptuous friend——the white dwarf also changes its brightness regularly.
但这事情的发生也有几个原因
But this happens for several other reasons.
米拉B与主星的连系中有一个吸积盘
Mira B has an accretion disk through which the white dwarf interacts with the main star,
从比它大得多的姐姐那里吸走恒星物质
sucking away stellar matter from her much larger sister.
因为恒星物质供应量的不平衡
Because of the unevenness of the supply of this substance,
卫星的亮度也随之变化
the luminosity of the satellite also changes.
通常矮星的亮度值在9.5到12星等间波动
On average, the brightness value of the dwarf ranges from magnitude 12 to 9.5.
应注意的是 这种星星的亮度变化的计算
It should be noted that the measurement of changes in brightness
是一个极大量的天文学工作
and stars of this type is a monumental amount of astronomical work.
想象一下 为了求出一颗恒星13年内的
Just imagine, in order to obtain the amplitude of oscillations of the luminosity of a star,
亮度的波动幅度
for a period of 13 years,
科学家们需要重叠并考虑这段时间内
scientists need to take into account and superimpose all the fluctuations
星星的所有光的起伏变化和亮度 顺便提一句 这期间内
and the brightness of the star during this period. And their duration, by the way,
是以分钟计算的 最后我们终于迎来了最后一组趣闻
is measured in minutes. And finally, we come to our last couple of delicious tidbits.
星系演化探索卫星 亦被称作GALEX
The Galaxy Evolution Explorer satellite also known as the GALEX,
是一个在2003年被发射的绕着紫外线太空运动的望远镜
is an orbiting Ultraviolet Space Telescope launched in 2003.
GALEX发现了米拉A外逸层的彗星尾巴的详细信息
The GALEX discovered a tail of matters stripped from the outer sphere of Mira A,
就像是彗星的尾巴 一个庞大的物质的尾巴
like that from a comet, a gigantic tail of material,
其长度约有13光年
the length of which is about 13 light years.
我们的太阳到其最近的恒星的距离大约为4光年 因此你可以理解这到底有多长了
So that you understand how long this really is, the distance from our Sun to the closest star
这是一个巨大的尾巴
is about 4 light years. That’s a mighty long tail.
我们星系里的大部分星星都缓慢地绕着中心旋转
Most of the stars in our galaxy slowly rotate around the center,
和星际气体的移动速度和方向相同
moving about the same speed and the same direction as the interstellar gas.
相较于此 米拉以130公里每秒的速度
In contrast to this, Mira is shooting through the galactic gas clouds
穿过银河系的气体云
at the speed of 130 km a second.
因此 米拉造成的问题仅仅只有爆炸
As a result, the matter thrown out by Mira is simply blown back,
产生的压缩气体的波浪型尾巴
forming a bow wave tail of compressed gas.
正如计算所展示的 这个星星每十年下降与整个地球相同质量的重量
As calculation show, every 10 years, the star drops a mass equivalent to that
为了产生这样一条尾巴 这个星星用了至少30000年
of the entire Earth. To form such a tail, the star has taken
喔 我是多么想如此近距离地看这种东西
at least 30 thousand years. Oh, how I would like to see something like this up close.
很遗憾我得是上帝才能让它发生
It is a pity that I would need to be a god to make it happen.
位于这颗星星前方的一个银河系膨胀物在Gale X望远镜
A gigantic swelling located in front of the star is clearly visible in these pictures
拍出的照片里清晰可见 这是冲击波的区域
from the Gale X Telescope. This is the region of the shockwave.
当快速通过水时 类似的东西会产生在船的鼻子前
Something like this is formed in front of boat’s nose, when cutting through water at high speed.
又或者例如 当以超音速的速度移动时 产生在一颗子弹前
Or, for example, in front of a bullet, moving at supersonic speed.
这就是这颗恒星与星际气体粒子碰撞时产生的东西
This is matter thrown out by the star, experiencing a head-on collision
我今天的叙述就到这里结束了
with particles of interstellar gas. And here my story comes to an end for today.
最后 我想补充一下 如此变化无常的星星我们已经在银河内
In conclusion, I should like to add that currently, we have discovered more than 46,000
发现了超过46000颗以及其他星系内的1000颗左右
such variable stars in the Milky Way and about 10,000 in other galaxies.
而且这只是个开始 每年都有更多被发现
And this is only the beginning, as more are being discovered every year.
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and well behaved acquaintances until next time.

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译制信息
视频概述

宇宙之大,无奇不有。这里将给您介绍宇宙中最忽暗忽亮的恒星,米拉。

听录译者

Amy

翻译译者

Aileen

审核员

译学馆审核员B

视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XyuXBYWZegY

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