【阅读】《经济学人》读译参考:神奇尽失?-纳米产品遭遇召回尴尬
发布于 2个月前 作者 kinglism 387 次浏览 来自 考研

Has all the magic gone? Apr 12th 2006 From The Economist print edition

ON MARCH 27th a bathroom cleaner called Magic Nano went (A) sale in Germany. Three days later it was withdrawn from the market after nearly 80 people reported severe respiratory problems and six were admitted (B) hospital with fluid on their lungs. Although most of the symptoms soon cleared up, critics of nanotechnology, have been quick to identify this as (1)one of the first examples of a sinister technology run ★amok[1].

One problem © this criticism is that the respiratory problems were noticed only with the ★aerosol[2] spray-can form of the product. No problems have been reported with the same fluid in a pump bottle. Jürgen Kundke, of the Berlin-based Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, a government group that reports on consumer-health protection, points to similar respiratory effects in a Swiss product several years ago that was not marketed (D) a nanotechnology label.

Another problem with blaming nanotechnology is that Kleinmann, the manufacturer based in Sonnenbühl, Germany, also produces a range of other products such as a ★windscreen[3] cleaner containing the ★self-same[4] nanotechnology. These have not harmed anyone.

The technology (E) question contains very tiny ★silicate[5] particles suspended in a fluid. When they are applied to a surface, these particles block the minute ★crevices[6] in it, (2)reducing the scope for dirt, moisture and bacteria to cling to the surface.

Neil McClelland, a spokesman (F) Kleinmann in Britain, said (3)the signs so far were that the culprit was the anti-corrosion liquid inside the ★propellant[7] can. The aerosol was the only product in the Magic Nano range that the company did not produce—it came from a supplier in Munich, called Hago, which also tested the product.

On April 10th representatives from Kleinmann met scientists in Berlin to brief them (G) Magic Nano’s ingredients. The product inside the aerosol was also cleared by the German consumer-protection agency just before the meeting.

Whatever the source of the problem, Kleinmann clearly has the responsibility to be sure that what it sells is safe. (4)And this is where nanosceptics have a point. No law yet states how to test nanotechnology.

Although manufacturers will always test the safety of their products, consumers—and the companies themselves—may fear that they are missing tests needed to establish that nanotechnology products are safe. Nobody knows what such tests might be, especially for ★particulates[8]. Regulators have been slow to issue guidance in spite of requests in Europe and America. The trouble is that government scientists are themselves unsure (H) exactly what tests might be necessary.

Nanosceptics hoped that this most recent ★episode[9] would create a health scare (I) nanotechnology. In fact, the reverse seems to have happened. Mr McClelland says that the publicity about Magic Nano—in particular, that it provides as much as six months’ antibacterial resistance (J) bathrooms—has brought Kleinmann more business than ever. ★(5)In the teeth of[10] the scare, Kleinmann’s customers seem to have concluded that the magic hasn’t rubbed off.

[QUIZ]

  1. 选择下列介词填空: on, with, for, over, under, to, of A. B. C. D. E. F. G. H. I. J. A.
  2. 试译划线部分: (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) NOTES 1.amok 亦作amuck adv. 常以run amok形式 a) to suddenly behave in a very violent and uncontrolled way: 发疯地,狂乱地 e.g. Drunken troops ran amok in the town. b) to get out of control and cause a lot of problems: 失控而导致诸多问题 e.g. an age in which global capitalism has run amok

2.aerosol n. a small metal container with liquid inside. You press a button on the container to make the liquid come out in very small drops. [与spray连用] 盛液体的金属小容器 (文中aerosol spray can 气溶胶喷雾罐)

3.windscreen n. (British English)the large window at the front of a car, bus etc [= windshield American English](英国英语)汽车挡风玻璃(=〔美国英语〕windshield) 另:windscreen wiper 雨刷

4.selfsame adj. exactly the same: 完全相同的 e.g. two great victories on the selfsame day

5.silicate n.
one of a group of common solid mineral substances that exist naturally in the Earth硅酸盐

6.crevice n. a narrow crack in the surface of something, especially in rock: 裂隙,裂缝(尤指岩石) e.g. small creatures that hide in crevices in the rock

7.propellant n. 1)an explosive for firing a bullet or rocket 子弹或火箭推进剂,发射剂 2)gas which is used in an aerosol to spray out a liquid 气溶胶气体

  1. particulates [常复数]n. harmful dust in the air, especially produced by car engines 空气中有害微尘(特别是汽车发动机产生的)

9.episode n. 1)an event or a short period of time during which something happens: (整个事情中的)一个事件 e.g. Being named the best athlete of the year was an important episode in his life. 他被命名为当年的最佳运动员是他一生中的重要事件。 She decided she would try to forget the episode by the lake.她决定试着忘掉湖边发生的事。 one of the most interesting episodes in his career他职业生涯中最有趣的事之一 2)a television or radio programme that is one of a series of programmes in which the same story is continued each week: (电视等的)连续剧的一出(或一集) e.g. The next episode of this television movie will be shown on Friday. 这部电视剧的下一集将于星期五播映。

10.in the teeth of sth.
in spite of opposition or danger from something: 不顾反对或危险 e.g. Permission for the development was granted in the teeth of opposition from local shopkeepers.尽管当地店主不同意,该项开发计划还是得到批准。 又:get your teeth into something to start to do something with a lot of energy and determination: 精神抖擞、毅然决然地做某事 e.g. I can’t wait to get my teeth into the new course. 我恨不得立刻全身心投入到新课中。

[TIPS & BACKGROUND] 纳米技术(nanotechnology):是20世纪90年代出现的一门新兴技术。是在0.10~100 nm尺度的空间内,研究电子、原子和分子运动规律和特性的崭新技术。纳米技术是以许多现代先进科学技术为基础的科学技术,它是现代科学和现代技术结合的产物,纳米技术被认为是世纪之交出现的一项高科技。现在纳米科学技术主要应用于材料学方面。所谓纳米材料,是指用纳米量级的微小颗粒制成的固体材料。其纳米颗粒的大小不超过100 nm,而通常情况下不超过10 nm。由于纳米颗粒的尺寸已经很接近原子的大小,量子效应便开始影响物质的结构与物理、化学性能。由此可见应用纳米技术可制成性能特别优良的各种特殊材料。例如,用单个原子制成的开关;单电子晶体管;各种单电子单原子的逻辑器件,它们将是新一代分子计算机的重要组成部分。纳米分子电脑将会小如谷粒,而其计算机能力将是现代“奔腾”芯片的1000亿倍。有专家指出,纳米技术尚处于孕育、发展阶段,目前市场上所谓的“纳米产品”有99%都名不副实。

[TRANSLATION] 神奇尽失? (陈继龙 学译) 一种名为“神奇纳米”的浴室清洁剂3月27日在德国上市,但三天后即被召回,原因是大约有80名用户诉称出现严重呼吸困难,并有6人因肺部出现分泌物而被送往医院。尽管大多数症状很快就消失了,对纳米技术持批评意见的人士仍然随即认定,一种“不良技术”开始兴风作浪了。

这种说法是有问题的,其一就是呼吸困难仅见于使用气溶胶喷灌式产品的人,而使用含有同样液体的泵瓶者则安然无恙。联邦政府危险评估研究所的尤尔根·昆特克指出,几年前瑞士一种产品对呼吸系统也产生了类似影响,当时其虽打着纳米技术标签,但并未进入市场。该研究所设在柏林,是一个政府团体,负责对消费者健康保护情况进行调查报告。

另一个问题是,该产品位于德国索伦堡的制造商克莱恩曼公司,也生产包含完全相同纳米技术的其他产品,如汽车挡风玻璃清洁剂,而这些产品并未对人产生有害影响。

这一饱受质疑的技术所运用的是许多悬浮在液体中、极其微小的硅酸盐颗粒。当这些颗粒覆盖到某一表面时,就能堵塞表面细缝,从而减少灰尘、水分和细菌的黏附。

克莱恩曼公司在英国的发言人Neil McClelland说,到目前为止已有迹象表明,气溶胶推进剂罐内的防腐液是问题根源所在。这种气溶胶罐是“神奇纳米”系列中唯一非该公司生产的产品——它来自于慕尼黑一家名为Hago的供应商,该供应商对此产品也做过检测。

4月10日,克莱恩曼公司的代表在柏林会晤了一些科学家,向其简要介绍了“神奇纳米”产品的组成。此前,德国消费者保护协会也已查清了气溶胶罐中所含成分。

显然,无论问题出自何处,克莱恩曼公司都有责任明确其所售商品安全与否。这一点也恰好给对纳米技术持怀疑态度的人留下了话柄。迄今为止,还没有规定如何检验纳米技术的相关法律。

制造商总是会对其产品进行安全检测的(指内部),可是消费者,也包括制造商自身在内,仍然有可能因为缺少必要的纳米科技产品安全性确认检验(指官方)而忧心忡忡。没有人知道这种确认检验该是怎样的,尤其是对于检测有害微尘而言。欧美尽管有人要求进行检验,但管理部门迟迟未颁布有关指南。要命的是,就连官方科学家们本身对到底必须采用何种检验方法也举棋不定。

对纳米科技持怀疑态度的人士希望,眼下发生的这一事件能引起人们对纳米技术健康问题的恐慌。实际上,结果似乎截然相反。McClelland先生说,“神奇纳米”产品的推广——特别是它能起到长达6个月的浴室抗菌防御作用——已经让克莱恩曼公司的生意更加红火。恐慌归恐慌,克莱恩曼公司的消费者似乎已然认定,该产品的“神奇”并没有被“擦掉”。(译注:rub off本意就是“擦掉,擦除”,此处说的这种浴室清洁剂有一种“神奇”的功能,不会因为存在健康隐患而象洗刷浴室时一样被“擦掉”,因此我认为采用直译更能表达作者的意思,不宜用意译,如消失、没有了等等。或者:“其神奇依然如故”。——值得商榷)

[KEY TO QUIZ] A. on (on sale 正在销售) B. to (admit to hospital 入院) C. with D. under E. in F. for G. on H. of I. over J. to


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