The sun

دوره: انگلیسی شش دقیقه ای / اپیزود 211

انگلیسی شش دقیقه ای

240 اپیزود

The sun

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Rob and Neil put on their sunglasses to find out more about this special star and teach some related vocabulary. We promise you won’t be blinded with science!

  • زمان مطالعه 6 دقیقه
  • سطح متوسط

دانلود اپلیکیشن «زبانشناس»

این اپیزود را می‌توانید به بهترین شکل و با امکانات عالی در اپلیکیشن «زبانشناس» بخوانید

دانلود اپلیکیشن «زبانشناس»

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Note: This is not a word-for-word transcript

Rob Hello and welcome to 6 Minute English. I’m Rob…

Neil … and I’m Neil. Hello.

Rob Hello, Neil, and what a glorious sunny day it is today. Not a cloud in the sky! Spring is definitely here! Now, Neil, you’re a bit of a sun worshipper, aren’t you? You like sunbathing…

Neil I do indeed! I love sitting in my deckchair in the garden, catching some rays…

Rob Hmm, yes, you look a bit orange actually. Are you sure that tan’s not fake?

Neil Very cheeky, Rob, very cheeky…

Rob Now the reason I mentioned sunbathing is because we’re discussing the sun in this programme.

Neil Yes, that’s right. The sun is our nearest star - although it’s a staggering 150 million kilometres away. Earth is one of nine planets that orbit - or circle around - the sun. And life on Earth couldn’t exist without its warmth and light.

Rob And we should mention… the sun is absolutely massive. Its volume is so large you could fit a million Earths inside it.

Neil That’s amazing! It’s also incredibly hot. Hotter than anything you could imagine.

Rob So Neil, can you answer this question: How hot is the surface of the sun? Now I’ll help you out by telling you that the sun’s core - that’s the centre - is a blistering five million degrees Celsius. But how hot is the sun’s surface? Is it …

a) 1.5 billion degrees Celsius

b) 1.5 million degrees Celsius

or c) 5500 degrees Celsius

Neil Hmm. I have no idea. They all sound quite warm to me. But … I think it must be a bit cooler than the core. So I’m going to go for 1.5 million degrees.

Rob Okay. Well, we’ll find out if you’re right or wrong later on. But now let’s listen to Professor of Solar Physics Louise Harra to discover what the sun is made of.

Louise Harra, Professor of Solar Physics at UCL Mullard Space Science It’s just a big ball of gas. And we measure it… it’s made mostly of hydrogen. So it’s roughly 90% hydrogen, it’s maybe 8% helium, and the rest of it’s made up of things like iron, carbon, oxygen, nickel.

Neil So the main gas is hydrogen, which accounts for 90% of the sun’s matter. Now, ‘matter’ means what something is made of.

Rob And hydrogen creates all the sun’s energy. Heat and light energy is created all the time in the sun ‘s core as a result of gas explosions or nuclear reactions. And this bit is hard to believe - it takes a hundred thousand years for this light energy to travel from the sun’s core to the sun’s surface.

Neil But once it reaches the sun’s surface - the photosphere - it can escape. In fact, it takes only eight minutes for light energy from the sun to reach the Earth. Scientists these days are able to see the photosphere in fantastic detail using powerful telescopes.

Rob Though Galileo observed dark spots on the sun through his telescope several hundred years ago, didn’t he? Which brings us on to another question: How old is the sun?

Neil Well, I happen to know that it came into being around four and a half billion years ago.

Rob Did you study solar physics at university, Neil?

Neil No, just… you know, just general knowledge.

Rob Well, the sun came into being - or was created - a very long time ago! We’re going to hear now from Professor of Physics, Yvonne Elseworth. What does she say about how long the sun is going to stay the same?

Yvonne Elseworth, Poynting Professor of Physics at the University of Birmingham In terms of its current lifestyle it’s here for as long again, so we’re about half way through. And then it becomes a different sort of star - it becomes a giant star and that’s probably curtains for us, actually. It’ll get a bit warm, a bit toasty, and we’ll get enveloped in the sun, and it won’t be nice…

Neil So the sun is going to stay the same for another four and a half billion years. But the professor also says that the sun will change. When it becomes a giant star, it will be curtains for our planet - and ‘curtains’ means the end, I’m afraid!

Rob Yes, it does. And as a giant star, the sun will get hotter - it will make the Earth toasty. Now, toasty usually means hot in a nice way.

Neil That’s right - for example, my toes are warm and toasty in my new slippers. But in reality the giant sun will make the Earth unbearably hot. It will surround - or envelop - our planet and burn it up.

Rob Well, I’m glad we’re not going to be around when that happens. Now, remember at the beginning of the show I asked you how hot the sun’s surface is? Is it a) 1.5 billion b) 1.5 million or c) 5500 degrees Celsius?

Neil And I said 1.5 million…

Rob It’s way too hot, I’m afraid you were wrong. The answer is actually 5500 degrees Celsius. But still, if you’re planning on visiting the sun, remember to take your sunglasses and plenty of sunscreen! Now, before we go, it’s time to remind ourselves of some of the vocabulary that we’ve heard today. Neil.

Neil orbit

massive

core

energy

matter

photosphere

come into being

curtains for something

toasty

envelop

Rob Thanks. Well, that brings us to the end of today’s 6 Minute English. We hope you enjoyed today’s programme. Please join us again soon. Bye bye.

Neil Bye.

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