As It Is - Survival Shelters, Tornadoes and Old Ironsides
新闻传真 - 救生避难所、龙卷风和老式铁壳船
Hello, and welcome to the Monday edition of As It Is, our daily show for people learning everyday American English.
I’m Christopher Cruise in Washington.
Today on the program, we talk with a scientist who is working to help weather experts improve their tornado predictions.
“I’m seeing it through computers and through the radar screens, which are making three-dimensional images of the wind and the debris and the hail, flowing around the storm.”
And we’ll take you back to the day in 1812 when a famous American ship got its nickname...
然后我们会带您回到 1812 年的今天，一艘著名的美国军舰获得了它的绰号。
But first, we tell you about a disputed project to build a large survival shelter in case disaster strikes the United States...
The World’s Biggest Private Survival Shelter?
For many years, the United States government has kept underground shelters for the president and other top officials in case of a major disaster or attack. But ordinary citizens do not have such a place to go to -- unless, of course, they build their own.
One man has decided to do just that, but not only for himself. He is building a huge underground shelter that will hold thousands of people. Not everyone thinks that’s a good idea.
The VOA’s Mike Richman recently spoke with the man -- as well as his critics.
VOA 的 Mike Richman 最近采访了这名男子——还有他的批评者。
Robert Vicino thinks humans are living in what is sometimes called “the end times.” He believes that a natural or manmade disaster will soon make life on the surface of the Earth impossible.
Robert Vicino 认为，人类的生存到了所谓的“末日时代”。他相信，自然或人为灾难很快会让地球表面生机不再。
His company -- called “Vivos” -- is building what it says is the world’s largest private underground survival shelter.
Mr. Vicino says he felt the urge to build the shelter more than 30 years ago.
Vicino 先生说，他在 30 多年前就迫切想要修建这个避难所。
“Somehow, I had this inspiration that I needed to build a shelter deep underground for as many as 5,000 people for what is coming our way. And the key word there is ‘coming,’ and the question is ‘from where and what?’ I didn’t know the answer. I still don’t.”
“不知为何，我有一种灵感，我需要为多达 5000 人修建一个地下深处的避难所，防止将要到来的事情。这里的关键词是‘将要到来’，而问题是‘来自哪里、来自什么’ 我不知道答案，。现在也不知道。”
The shelter will be built in the mid-western American town of Atchison, Kansas, 40 meters below a limestone mountain, in a place that was once used by the Army to store weapons.
这个避难所将会建在美国中西部堪萨斯州艾奇逊镇，在一个石灰岩山体下 40 米处，这里曾经被军队用作武器存放。
Only people who pay the one-time cost of $20,000 can use it. Anyone in the world can join.
只有支付一次成本 2 万美元的人可以使用它。世界上的任何人都可以参与。
Paul Seyfried is an adviser to a group called the American Civil Defense Association. It tries to prepare the public for manmade and natural disasters. Mr. Seyfried wonders if the Vivos shelter could operate if a disaster hits.
Paul Seyfried 在一家名为美国民防协会的组织担任顾问。该组织努力为人为和自然灾害筹备公共设施。Seyfried 质疑 Vivos避难所在灾难来临时能否得以运转。
“My only reservation I would have is who is going to be in charge of law enforcement and then when you put 1,500 or 1,600 people together from all these different backgrounds with varying amounts of food and other support -- I’m just trying to get my mind around all the problems they’re going to have with that.”
“我唯一的保留意见是，谁将负责法律的执行，然后当你把背景各异的 1500 或1600 人放在一起，还需要大量食物和其他供应——我只是试着想他们这样会遇到的所有问题。”
Jacque Pregont is president of the Atchison Chamber of Commerce, a business group. The organization hopes the shelter will bring in travelers who will spend money and improve the town’s economy -- disaster or not.
Jacque Pregont 是商业组织艾奇逊商会的主席。该组织希望这个避难所能够带来游客，他们会在这里消费，推进该镇的经济——不管有没有灾难。
“I would hope that they are going to end up coming here and spending some time here and not just waiting for a catastrophic event.”
I’m Mike Richman.
Getting Close to Tornadoes
Weather experts are able to predict bad weather better than ever before thanks to satellites, high-altitude balloons and radar stations. But for many years these experts have incorrectly predicted tornado formation, giving false warnings about 75 percent of the time.
So, scientists are working to improve their tornado predictions. They are getting close to the large and dangerous wind storms to see how they form.
They believe that, if they know what a tornado looks like as it forms, they will lower their false prediction rate.
Jerilyn Watson reports.
Doppler is a type of radar that identifies weather conditions based on the flow and speed of objects through the air.
Scientist Joshua Wurman was the first to put Doppler radar equipment on a vehicle and drive it into the path of a tornado.
科学家 Joshua Wurman 是第一位将 Doppler 雷达设备装在运载工具上送进龙卷风行进路线的人。
“I invented the Doppler on Wheels back in the 1990s because I was frustrated that we couldn’t see enough detail inside tornados and hurricanes. We had blurry images of all these things, and in order to really understand the physics -- the math of what’s going on inside a tornado, how exactly are they forming, how strong are the winds right at the surface -- we need to get up very, very, close.”
“我在 20 世纪 90 年代发明了‘有轮子的Doppler’，因为我们无法看到龙卷风和飓风内部的细节，我对此感到受挫。我们有关这些东西的图像都很模糊，而为了真正理解其物理特性——龙卷风内部过程的数学表达、它们准确的形成方式、表面风力的大小——我们需要非常、非常接近。”
Mr. Wurman heads the Center for Severe Weather Research in Boulder, a city in the western state of Colorado. He has put his Doppler radar equipment on large trucks. Mr. Wurman and his colleagues sit inside the truck and study the computer images formed by the signals that return.
Wurman 先生负责科罗拉多州西部城市博尔德的恶劣天气研究中心。他把他的 Doppler 雷达设备装在一个大型卡车上。Wurman 先生和他的同事坐在卡车内，研究返回信号合成的计算机图片。
“I’m seeing it through the computers and through the radar screens, which are making three-dimensional images of the wind and the debris and the rain and hail flowing around the storm.”
Using information from satellites, stationary radar networks, and computer models, the team finds a storm that could become a tornado and drives the truck right into that area. Doppler on Wheels has been close to over 200 tornados so far.
利用卫星、固定雷达网和计算机模型带来的信息，这个团队发现了一个会发展成龙卷风的风暴，然后把卡车开到了那个区域。“有轮子的 Doppler”现在已经近距离观察过 200 多起龙卷风了。
Information gathered by the instruments could help builders design stronger homes in areas where such dangerous storms are common.
Scientists are learning more about which storms develop into tornados by studying them from start to end. Mr. Wurman says that radar information has taught them that a “wind surge” could be what causes a storm to turn into a tornado.
“The scientific process is that we need to now observe that and repeat that observation in maybe a dozen or more other thunderstorms, and in maybe a dozen or more thunderstorms that aren’t making tornados, to really see if that surge causes tornados and if there is no surge, whether there is no tornado. ”
I’m Jerilyn Watson.
201 years ago today the 40-gun American Navy ship, the U.S.S. Constitution, got its nickname “Old Ironsides.” The name is linked to a battle between the Constitution and the British ship H.M.S. Guerriere during the War of 1812. The traditional naval story says a Constitution crew member watched a British cannonball hit the Constitution. The missile apparently did no damage to the wooden ship’s oak hull. The crew member reportedly said “Hooray, her sides are like iron!” And the nickname was born.
201 年前的今天，一艘 40 炮的美国海军军舰“宪法号”护卫舰得到了一个绰号，“老式铁壳船”。这个名字和 1812 年的这场“宪法号”与英国“战士号”护卫舰之间的战役有关。这个古老的海军故事讲道，一位“宪法号”船员看到英国的加仑炮击中了“宪法号”，导弹却显然没能破坏这艘木船的橡木船身。这位船员不断地重复“天呐，她的船身就像铁壳一样”。这个绰号就诞生了。
The Constitution won that battle and served through the war. It later became a training ship. It was scheduled to be destroyed in 1830. But many Americans opposed the idea.
“宪法号”赢得了那场战役，并参与了整场战争。它后来成为了一艘培训军舰。原计划它将在 1830 年被销毁，但很多美国人反对这个想法。
One of them was the poet Oliver Wendell Holmes. He was the father of the future Supreme Court justice of the same name. He wrote a sad and angry poem to protest the planned destruction of the ship. He called his poem, not surprisingly, “Old Ironsides.”
The ship was saved -- mostly because of the poem -- but its condition worsened over the next century. In 1925, a national fund-raising campaign paid for a badly-needed restoration.
The U.S.S. Constitution is now a national historic monument. “Old Ironsides” rests at the Boston Navy Yard in Massachusetts.
I’m Christopher Cruise. From all of us at The Voice of America, thanks for listening today, and we’ll see you tomorrow!