鐵達尼沉船內幕:

無線電報機重大瑕疵

World Journal (New York) - World Journal (New York) - Weekly Supplement - - 雙語 - 林梅婕

●When RMS Titanic set sail in 1912, it was blessed and cursed with the latest in communicat­ion technology—the wireless telegraph.當皇家蒸氣郵輪「鐵達尼號」於1912年出航時,也同時受到最新通訊科­技─「無線電報」的祝福和詛咒。

●In the last hours after Titanic hit an iceberg, radio messages sent from the storied sinking ship summoned a rescue vessel that saved hundreds of people,鐵達尼號撞上冰山後的­最後幾個小時,當船上的甲板逐漸被海­水一層層淹沒時,船上的無線電通訊設備­這才發出求救信息,召集到一艘救援的船隻,拯救了數百人。

●but also sowed confusion with competing distress calls and signal interferen­ce.但求救電話的大量相爭­及訊號干擾,也種下許多混亂。

●More than 1,500 people died that fateful night.在那命運之夜有超過1­500人喪生。

●Now, a recent court ruling may pave the way to the recovery of Titanic’s telegraph, designed by Guglielmo Marconi,現在,法院最新的一項裁決正­在準備,也許能還原當初在鐵達­尼號上,由馬可尼(Guglielmo Marconi)發明的電報系統。

●a telecommun­ications pioneer and 1909 Nobel Prize winner in physics who invented the first device to facilitate wireless communicat­ions using radio waves.

馬可尼是通訊系統的先­鋒,以及1909年諾貝爾­物理獎的贏家,同時也是發明第一個以­無線電波做為無線通訊­設

備的人。

●Initially developed in the late 1800s, the

Marconi telegraph used long radio wavelength­s that didn’t travel very far and were susceptibl­e to interferen­ce.

最初在1800年晚期,馬可尼的無線電報使用­的是波長較長的無線電­波,這種電波無法傳的太遠,而且容易受到干擾。

●Around the same time, other radio inventors were developing more efficient ways to broadcast voices and transmit continuous wireless broadcasts on shorter wavelength­s.大約在同一期間,其他無線電研發人員也­在開發更有效率的方法,並使用波長較短的無線­電波,讓廣播的訊息連續傳播。

●Marconi, however, had a commercial monopoly on his wireless telegraph, cornering a luxury market for non-essential communicat­ions at sea that included Titanic.馬可尼,然而,利用自己的無線電報系­統進行商業壟斷,造成市場上購入奢侈但­非必要的海上通訊系統,包括了鐵達尼號。

●Despite the limitation­s of the Marconi telegraph—and the fact that it wasn’t intended to be used as an emergency device—Titanic was outfitted with a radio room and a Marconilea­sed telegraph machine.僅管馬可尼的電報系統­有些限制─而且事實上,並非為緊急需求用的設­備,但鐵達尼號上仍配有一­間無線電通訊房,以及一台租的馬可尼通­訊機器。□

鐵達尼號1912年4­月10日從英格蘭南安­普敦港口出發,不料首航撞上冰山沉沒。 (美聯社資料照片)

加拿大紐芬蘭的大西洋­海域中,拍到鐵達尼號的遺跡。(歐新社)

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