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  • Let's speculate for a moment.

    來假設一下

  • What would happen if our sun suddenly went out?

    要是太陽突然消失後會發生甚麼事呢?

  • For an hour

    一個小時

  • or for a month

    或是一個月

  • or let's say even for a whole year?

    或甚至假設一整年呢?

  • What would happen to mankind?

    這對人類會造成甚麼影響?

  • The very last photons from the surface of our star and the last particles that make up the solar wind

    太陽表面的形成太陽風的最後一個光子和分子

  • have started their final flight towards the Earth.

    將最後的光傳至地球

  • No one yet suspects that the heart of our solar system has stopped functioning.

    沒有人會發現太陽系的太陽已經停止運作

  • 8 to 9 minutes later and the sky suddenly turns black.

    8 到 9 分鐘後天空會突然變黑

  • Darkness descends upon the entire planet.

    黑暗降臨整個地球

  • No matter whether at the moment it's the deep dark of midnight

    無論是深夜時分

  • or a bright sunny noontime at your location,

    或是陽光普照的中午時段

  • you can quickly and easily see the difference.

    你都可以明顯看出區別

  • The stars are now all clearly visible against the sheer black backdrop of the sky.

    所有星星在全黑的天空下顯得非常清晰

  • The Moon is not visible at all since there's no longer any sunlight were it to reflect

    月亮也看不見了,因為沒有太陽反射它

  • A moment before the onset of the all and shrouding darkness

    太陽消失不久後,地球籠罩在黑暗之中

  • bright Northern Lights may appear

    北極光可能會出現

  • due to changes in the magnetic field around the Earth

    因為地球的磁場改變

  • and the disturbances in the ionosphere.

    及電離層的干擾

  • The most dreadful consequence of all

    其中,最恐怖的結果就是

  • is the complete and utter cessation of the process of photosynthesis

    光合作用完全停止

  • resulting in plants and cyanobacteria no longer producing oxygen.

    造成植物以及藍菌門不再製造氧氣

  • This will soon lead to, how shall we say it,

    這會導致,該怎麼說呢

  • difficulties for every living being.

    對生物造成生存困難

  • After an hour, true panic reigns over the heretofore day times side of the earth.

    一小時後,真正的恐慌將籠罩先前是白天面的地球

  • Power and communication outages propagate across the entire planet.

    各地電力及通訊系統中斷

  • Temperatures everywhere drop by a several degrees

    各地氣溫驟降好幾度

  • and the Earth surface begins to slowly cool.

    而地球表面溫度開始緩慢降溫

  • But from the inside the planet is still heated by its molten core.

    但地球中心的核心仍然持續加溫

  • 24 hours in, dawn has not and will not arrive.

    24 小時候,太陽沒有出現,且永遠不會出現

  • Panic and chaos are enveloping the entire world

    恐慌及動亂籠罩整個地球

  • State authorities have almost zero control over the situation.

    各地政府完全無法控制局面

  • Humankind is trying to figure out what the hell happened

    人類嘗試了解到底是發生了甚麼事

  • while coping with massive power and water supply outages.

    在對付大規模停電和水補給短缺時

  • The temperature on the surface falls to betweento 7 °C

    地球表面溫度下降至攝氏 5 到 7 度

  • That's about 41° to 45 °F

    也就是華氏 41 度 到 45 度

  • and has now decreased by about 15° to 20 °C.

    溫度現在下降了攝氏 15 到 20 度

  • That's a drop of about 30 °F.

    也就是華氏溫度 30 度

  • Some species of plants and microorganisms begin to die.

    地球上一些品種的植物及微生物開始死亡

  • The inhabitants of the ocean for the time being

    海洋中的生物

  • feel almost no changes.

    則幾乎不會有影響

  • After 7 days, it's still dark.

    7 天後,地球仍然黑暗

  • The average temperature on earth is now -17 °C.

    地球現在的平均溫度是攝氏 -17 度

  • That's about 1 °F.

    也就是華氏 1 度

  • In areas where there are tectonic faults,

    在一些有板塊斷層的地方

  • it's still warm.

    仍然保持溫暖

  • Thanks to geothermal energy

    這都要感謝地熱

  • not letting the surface freeze over.

    不讓表面結冰

  • Most plants have already died due to cold or lack of light.

    大部分植物因為寒冷的天氣及缺少陽光曝曬而死亡

  • Herbivorous and heat loving animals also begin to die.

    草食性動物以及喜愛陽光曝曬的動物也開始死亡

  • In the oceans, phytoplanktons begin to die as well.

    海洋中,浮游植物也會開始死亡

  • The inhabitants of shallow waters

    淺水區生物

  • suffer tremendously from the cold

    承受極寒冷的溫度

  • and the surface of the ocean is beginning to turn to ice.

    海洋的表面開始結冰

  • By now, scientists and other individuals have realized

    到了現在,科學家及其他人開始了解

  • what has happened and rushed to organize and equip shelters.

    太陽停止運作了,急速組織並成立避難所

  • One month in and the Earth is continuing to cool.

    一個月後地球持續降溫

  • The average temperature on the surface

    地球表面溫度

  • is now about -30 °C.

    來到攝氏 -30 度

  • That's -22 °F.

    也就是華氏 -22 度

  • And almost the entire planet is now coated with ice.

    現在地球上幾乎都覆蓋著冰

  • Virtually all plants and cyanobacteria have perished.

    實際上,所有植物和藍菌門幾乎都死亡了

  • Some species of trees, especially conifers, are still alive.

    一些樹種,尤其是松柏科植物,還沒消失

  • But with the lack of sunlight,

    但因為沒有日照

  • even they are not producing oxygen.

    松柏科植物也不製造氧氣了

  • In fact, most of the earth living things have died.

    事實上,地球上大多生物都已死亡

  • But..

    但是...

  • some bacteria still carry on with their normal life activity.

    一些細菌仍然繼續分裂生殖

  • Most of the remaining life on earth

    地球上大多還活著的生物

  • is now found only near geothermal springs and under water.

    只存在於地熱噴泉附近及水中

  • Interestingly, the layer of ice on the surface of the ocean

    有趣的是,海洋表面的冰層

  • slows down their cooling.

    降溫趨緩

  • And in the areas of oceanic tectonic faults

    而靠近海洋板塊裂縫

  • and geothermal sources, the water is still warm.

    和地熱來源的地方,水仍然是溫熱的

  • Obviously being naturally heated.

    顯然,這是大自然能源加熱的

  • But even in the ocean

    但即使是海洋

  • the drama of a mass extinction event

    物種大規模滅絕的戲碼

  • begins to unfold.

    也開始上演

  • One year in and the surface of the Earth and the oceans

    太陽消失一年後,地球陸地及海洋表面

  • are covered with a thick layer of ice.

    覆蓋厚厚一大層冰

  • According to professor David Stevenson at CalTech

    根據美國加州理工學院教授 David Stevenson 述說

  • the temperature on the surface of the earth

    地球表面溫度

  • should drop to about -40 °C and that's the same in Fahrenheit.

    可能降到攝氏 -40 度,華氏溫度等同

  • Life endures now only deep in the earth oceans,

    只有深海生物仍然生存

  • and perhaps some groups of humans

    或可能某些人類族群

  • might be able to survive on the surface of the planet

    能在地球表面

  • in places like Iceland and other areas with large amounts of geothermal activity.

    像是冰島或其他有大量地熱活動的地區生存

  • Professor Stevenson believes that the Earth

    Stevenson 教授認為地球

  • will continue to cool for another several thousand years.

    會繼續降溫持續數千年

  • Until the surface temperature reaches approximately -160 °C.

    直到表面溫度降至攝氏 -160 度

  • That's about -256 °F.

    相當於華氏 -256 度

  • At that point, life on the planet

    到了此時,地球上

  • in the usual sense of the word

    任何生命體

  • will simply become impossible.

    完全無法生存

  • And let's not forget about the gravity of the Sun.

    別忽略了太陽的引力

  • After all, it's unlikely that the Sun could suddenly go out

    畢竟,太陽突然消失後

  • without losing its gravitational pull.

    引力也會跟著消失

  • If the Sun ceases to hold the planets

    如果太陽不再維持行星

  • and other celestial bodies in their orbit

    及天體在其軌道上運行

  • then the planets and asteroids will simply fly away into outer space.

    行星以及小行星就會在外太空飄行

  • Some of them possibly even colliding with one another.

    有些甚至會跟其他行星或小行星碰撞

  • The Earth for one will soar out into deep space

    地球也會在外太空飄行

  • where it could get bombarded with asteroids, comets and radiation

    可能會受到其他小行星、彗星撞擊以及放射線傷害

  • collide with another planet

    和其他行星對撞

  • or even some day end up in the gravity well of a black hole.

    甚至有一天會掉進黑洞的重力井裡

  • There's also a very small possibility that

    也有很小機率

  • after wandering through space for a very long time,

    地球在太空飄行非常久之後

  • the Earth would be able to integrate

    會和另一個恆星系統接軌

  • into another stellar system and find a new sun.

    找到另一個太陽

  • In the end, however,

    然而,最後

  • it's important to realize that this scenario is just a fantasy.

    很重要的是,這種情況只是種幻想

  • Or rather a thought experiment of sorts.

    或是實驗性假設

  • As for the real future of our star,

    至於未來星球

  • in a couple of billion years

    在好幾十億年後的真正命運是

  • the sun will swell and turn into a red giant.

    太陽會膨脹,變成巨大星體

  • Our star will swallow Mercury and Venus

    太陽會先吞噬水星和金星

  • and Earth and Mars will become heated up to several thousand degrees.

    而地球及火星上的溫度會上升至好幾千度

  • In five billion years,

    五十一億年後

  • the Sun will explode and throw off its outer envelope.

    太陽爆炸並將外層拋出後

  • Leaving at the center of the Solar System,

    太陽系中央會剩下

  • a gradually cooling stellar core.

    一個持續冷卻的星核

  • A white dwarf around which will orbit

    一顆白矮星讓

  • whatever remains of the Solar System after the explosion.

    任何在爆炸後還留存在太陽系的物體在其軌道上運行

  • Concerning humankind, its fate remains unknown

    人類的命運仍然未知

  • Hopefully by that time

    幸好到時候

  • we'll be able to fly to other planets and star systems.

    我們能夠飛到其他行星或是其他星系去

  • But that is a story for another day.

    但這又是另一段故事了

Let's speculate for a moment.

來假設一下

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要是太陽消失了會發生什麼事? (If The Sun Goes Out For 24 Hours)

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    April Lu 發佈於 2018 年 11 月 20 日
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