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南极冰盖下面是什么?

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2020年01月14日

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What lies beneath the Antarctic ice sheet?

南极冰盖下面是什么?

The Antarctic ice sheet that for centuries hid a massive canyon has slowly been releasing even more secrets about what lies beneath all that ice.

几个世纪以来,南极冰原一直隐藏着一个巨大的峡谷,而现在,冰原下隐藏着更多的秘密。

For the past few years, researchers have been studying the area beneath the ice, one of the largest unsurveyed land surfaces on Earth. Most recently, a team of glaciologists from the University of California, Irvine, have released a detailed topography map of the area.

在过去的几年里,研究人员一直在研究冰层下的区域,这是地球上最大的未测量地表之一。最近,来自加州大学欧文分校的一组冰川学家发布了该地区的详细地形图。

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MICHAEL D'ESTRIES

The map, part of the BedMachine project, and the related findings were published in the journal Nature Geoscience. Researchers say the study will help reveal the regions of the continent that will likely be most vulnerable to climate warming.

这张地图是贝德马欣项目的一部分,相关发现发表在《自然地球科学》杂志上。研究人员表示,这项研究将有助于揭示非洲大陆上最容易受到气候变暖影响的地区。

Some of the most interesting results from the project, according to the university's release, are the discovery of "stabilizing ridges that protect the ice flowing across the Transantarctic Mountains; a bed geometry that increases the risk of rapid ice retreat in the Thwaites and Pine Island glaciers sector of West Antarctica; a bed under the Recovery and Support Force glaciers that is hundreds of meters deeper than previously thought, making those ice sheets more susceptible to retreat; and the world's deepest land canyon below Denman Glacier in East Antarctica."

根据该大学发布的消息,该项目的一些最有趣的结果是发现了“稳定的山脊,保护了横贯南极山脉的冰流;床的几何形状增加了南极洲西部斯韦茨和松岛冰川快速退缩的风险;恢复和支援部队冰川下的床比以前想象的更深,使这些冰原更容易后退;南极洲东部登曼冰川下面是世界上最深的陆地峡谷。

The map was created using ice thickness data from 19 research institutes from as far back as 1967, as well as ice shelf bathymetry (depth) measurements from NASA, and seismic information.

这张地图是根据19个研究机构1967年的冰层厚度数据,以及美国宇航局的冰架水深测量数据和地震信息绘制的。

Several years ago, geologists studying satellite imagery of the remote Princess Elizabeth Land in East Antarctica discovered evidence of a massive subglacial canyon system buried beneath the ice.

几年前,地质学家研究了南极洲东部偏远的伊丽莎白公主地的卫星图像,发现了冰层下有一个巨大的冰下峡谷系统的证据。

Tipped off by the physical hints, the team of researchers utilized radio-echo sounding to pull back the white curtain and peer through the ice. What they found was an absolute monstrosity of geology, a canyon system believed to be more than 685 miles long and as much as 0.6 mile deep. In some places, the measurements failed simply because they were too deep to be recorded. And there's more:

在物理信号的提示下,研究小组利用无线电回声探测拉开白色的帷幕,透过冰层窥视。他们发现的是一个绝对的地质怪物,一个超过685英里长,0.6英里深的峡谷系统。在一些地方,测量失败只是因为它们太深而无法记录。还有更多:

"Linked to the canyons, a large subglacial lake may exist that may be the last remaining large (more then 62 miles in length) subglacial lake to be discovered in Antarctica," the authors wrote in a paper published in Geology. It's estimated that this subglacial lake alone may cover as much as 480 square miles.

作者在《地质学》杂志上发表的一篇论文中写道:“可能存在一个与这些峡谷相连的巨大的冰下湖,这可能是在南极洲发现的最后一个巨大的(长度超过62英里)冰下湖。”据估计,仅这个冰下湖就可覆盖480平方英里。

The geologists believe the canyon system was likely carved out by water. Because it's so ancient, however, it's not clear if it formed before or after it was entombed in ice.

地质学家认为,这个峡谷系统很可能是由水雕刻而成的。然而,由于它是如此古老,尚不清楚它是在冰封之前还是之后形成的。

"Discovering a gigantic new chasm that dwarfs the Grand Canyon is a tantalizing prospect," study co-author professor Martin Siegert from the Grantham Institute at Imperial College London told IANS. "Our international collaboration of U.S., U.K., Indian, Australian and Chinese scientists are pushing back the frontiers of discovery on Antarctica like nowhere else on Earth."

伦敦帝国理工学院格兰瑟姆研究所的马丁·西格特教授是这项研究的合著者,他告诉亚洲人:“发现一个比大峡谷还小的巨大新裂口是一个诱人的前景。”“我们与美国的国际合作、英国美国、印度、澳大利亚和中国的科学家正在把南极洲的发现边界往后推,这是地球上其他地方所没有的。”


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