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星系是从哪里来的?

Where Do Galaxies Come From?

对于我们来说 宇宙中大多数事物发展得极其缓慢 难以觉察
Most things in the universe happen too slowly for us to see them happening. Stars like the
恒星例如太阳要经历几千万年才能形成 另外还要经历几亿年才能形成星系
sun take tens of millions of years to form, and hundreds of millions of years to orbit
星系的碰撞要花费几十亿年才能融合
their galaxies; colliding galaxies take billions of years to merge. And yet we have a pretty
然而我们对这些事如何发生有着比较准确的理解
decent understanding of how all these things happen, because there are so many of them
因为在可观测的宇宙中我们可以看到许多类似的事件
in the observable universe that we can look out and see different versions of similar
以不同的形式在不同的地方发生因为光到达我们所观察的地点需要时间
events happening in different places, and because light takes time to get here we see
不同距离不同时刻下,我们看到的都是宇宙的历史
places at different distances at different times thoughout the history of the universe,
所以我们可以拼拼凑凑的了解恒星是如何产生又是如何消亡的
and from all that we can piece together an understanding of how stars are born and how
星系之间是如何演变如何相互影响等等这有点类似于
they die, how galaxies develop and interact, and so on. It’s kind of like if you only
如果你只有10分钟去学习人类如何发展:在那段时间内你不可能看清任何一个人是如何发展
had ten minutes to study how humans grow: you couldn’t see any one person grow very much
但是通过观察人类在地球上的不同时期
in that time, but by looking at humans of different ages all around the world, you can
你可以得到一个人类生命的完整面貌
get a pretty good picture of what a human life looks like.
然而 刚开始形成的星系非常小又极其昏暗以至于
However, the very first galaxies to ever form were so small and dim that we don’t have nearly
我们现在仍不知道新生星系是如何诞生的就像我们不知道它们将会如何演变如何相互影响
as good an idea of how baby galaxies are born as we do about how they behave and interact
在他们的未来进程中
later in life.
我们目前的理解是在早期的宇宙中 在星体形成之前
Our current understanding is that in the early universe, before any stars had formed, everything
任何事物都向外喷出气体和大量暗物质 重力以不可觉察的速度
was just spread-out gas and a lot of dark matter. Gravity would have caused slightly
将暗物质密度高的部分凝结成块 并吸入少量气体直到
denser areas of dark matter to attract into clumps, pulling in bits of gas until they
它们足够重利用重力坍塌进行热核聚变
were dense enough on their own to gravitationally collapse and start thermonuclear fusion. A
然后出现了一个星体,很多星体。一大群星体和它们所联系的暗物质相互吸引合并成星团
star. Many stars. Clusters of stars and their associated dark matter attracted together
然后这些星团再聚集在一起
and merged, and then those clustered-clusters clustered together, eventually forming the
最终形成了我们今天所看到的遥远的历史久远的星系
most distant (and longest-ago) galaxies we see today.
但是在宇宙大爆炸之后我们确实无法准确知道这团暗物质和气体是如何形成的
But we don’t know exactly how soon after the big bang the clumps of dark matter and
也不知道在这个过程中何时会凝聚出第一颗恒星
gas formed; or when during the process of clumping and clustering the first stars ignited;
也不知道吸引气体形成星体的暗物质群至少要多大
or if there was a minimum dark-matter-clump size necessary to attract enough gas to form
也不知道它们是不是最早起的星团聚集形成的星系
stars; or if the very first star clusters came together to form galaxies at all – they
因为最早形成的星系不仅小 而且容易爆炸
might have been so small and fragile they were blown apart when their own stars went
实际上超新星和第一个星系是第一轮的气体和暗物质
supernova and the first galaxies may have actually formed from a second round of clumping
以及爆炸后的粉尘重新聚集在第二轮才形成
of gas and dark matter as well as dust from the explosions.
老实说 我们甚至无法对一个星系下一个足够完整的定义
To be honest, we don’t even have a good enough definition of what a galaxy is to know when
我们是应该叫它们星体群还是星系
to stop calling something a cluster of stars and when to start calling it a galaxy.
目前我们所知道的是在我们这个宇宙中有数十亿星系
What we do know is that today we have bajillions of galaxies in our universe, none of which
没有一个是在138亿年前就已经存在 所以在某些地方它们一定存在过
existed 13.8 billion years ago, so somewhere in between they must all have been babies.
巨大气态云团被层层叠叠的暗物质所包裹
Big gassy babies surrounded by clumps of dark matter.
在美国国家航空航天局的JWST和空间望远镜科学学会的支持下 制作了这个视频
This video was made with the support of NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope and the Space Telescope
James Webb 空间望远镜对红外波长特别敏感
Science Institute. The James Webb Space Telescope is especially sensitive to the infrared wavelengths
这种来自新生星系的光的波长在它抵达我们的太阳系之前不断延长
that light from baby galaxies gets stretched to by the time it arrives in our solar system,
所以天文学家很高兴能用JWST来了解曾经在宇宙中形成的
so astronomers are excitedly looking forward to using the JWST to learn more about the
早期星体和星系
very first stars and galaxies that ever formed in the universe.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kif4ON6QOPE

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