为何雨水无法对蚊子一击致命?

为何雨水无法对蚊子一击致命?
较易 2183

Why Raindrops Don't Kill Mosquitos?

Imagine how tough life would be if raindrops weighed 3 tons apiece as they fell out of the sky at 35 km/h. That is how raindrops look to a mosquito, yet a raindrop weighing 50 times more than one can hit the insect and the mosquito will survive.

试想一下,一滴重达3吨的巨型雨珠,以35千米的时速从天而降,朝你砸来,会是怎样的一番情形?对于蚊子来说,这样的场景可不恐怖,面对自身重量50倍重的雨滴,它们能够轻松躲过,毫发无损。


It is definitely a mundane question but troubles us for so long time: how is it that mosquitos can fly through the rain without getting knocked out of the air? Recently, a bunch of scientists from University of Georgia conducted an experiment to find out the secrets of mosquitos.

这一问题虽平平无奇,但想必已经困扰了我们很长时间:蚊子究竟是怎么做到在雨中畅行无阻的?前段时间,佐治亚大学的一群科学家就针对这个问题进行了实验研究,试图找出蚊子无惧雨水的原因。

The first thing they learned was that it is hard to aim a raindrop at a mosquito. The first step of the experiment was dropping small drops from the third floor of a building onto a container of mosquitos, but it did not go well. It is kind of like playing the worst game of darts you can imagine.

实验中碰到的第一个难点是在自然条件下,很难将雨滴瞄准蚊子,造成“有效打击”。实验中的第一步是从三层楼高的地方,向地面一个装有蚊子的容器中滴水,但是效果不尽人意。这种情况就如同闭着眼睛投飞镖,命中率极低。

So the team took the experiment inside. They fired jets of water drops at the mosquitos and recorded the results with a super-high-speed video camera. They found that mosquitos don't actually dodge raindrops — they hitch a ride.

于是实验团队将实验搬进了室内。他们在容器内对着蚊子喷射水珠,并用超高速相机对整个过程进行拍摄。实验结果令人惊讶:蚊子并不会躲避雨珠,恰恰相反,它们会“搭”雨珠的便车。



To them it is like getting hit with a feather. They literally ride the drop for about a thousandth of a second until their wings catch the wind like little kites, and tear the mosquito away from the drop. The mosquitos don't seem any the worse for wear.

对于蚊子来说,雨珠的影响轻如鸿毛。水滴接触到蚊子后,实际产生影响的时间只有千分之一秒,随后蚊子的翅膀便能捕捉到水滴划过空气产生的“风”,如同风筝一样获得了动力,这一过程使蚊子能迅速摆脱与水滴的接触,化险为夷。事过之后,蚊子毫发无损。


The real hazard for mosquitos is apparently if they are flying very close to the ground. If they don't peel off from the raindrop in time, they live out that idiom about being between a rock and a hard place.

然而,当蚊子在十分靠近地面的高度飞行时,真正的危险便开始降临。这种情况下,蚊子若是无法及时从雨滴中脱身,就可能会被击落在地,进退维谷。



So what did researchers learn? For the inventors who are making flying robots the size of insects, as long as your robot is small enough, you don't have to worry about rain. For biologists, here's another exquisite example of how life has evolved to survive on a planet that's inundated with fluids. And for anyone who might be tempted to kill a mosquito by spraying water at it in midair — it'll never work.

从中研究者们有什么收获呢?对于无人机的设计者来说,只要体型足够小,那么下雨对无人机来说或许算不上什么挑战。对于生物学家来说,这一实验是又一展示生命在地球这颗河川纵横、湖泊密布的星球上如何演变发展的绝佳案例。而对我们来说,试图对着空中飞舞的蚊子洒水来将它们杀灭——这可一点用都没有。


VOCABULARY

dodge: v. 闪开;躲开
between a rock and a hard place:(谚语)左右为难;进退维谷
inundate: v. 淹没;泛滥
  • 字数:369个
  • 易读度:较易
  • 来源:互联网 2019-07-10