Listening PART 4
Distraction ‘feet’ might be tempting but we are told blood is pulled towards the feet on Earth, not in space.
32 Calcium This is the only mineral given as an
33 muscle Another way of saying ‘muscle loss’ is ‘their muscle begins to waste’.
34 vision We are told that microgravity can lead to astronauts not being able to see clearly, and that their vision can be permanently affected.
35 sweat Because of the word ‘including’ in the
question, we know that the key must be a form of water.
Distraction ‘expensive’ might be tempting but the speaker explains that engineers want to make light materials so that transport doesn’t have to cost so much.
38 windows ‘Large windows’ is expressed as ‘to increase the size of the windows on the ISS. They’re very small.’
Distraction ‘exhibits’ might be tempting, but they
are objects, not places. Also, because the word
begins with a vowel, it wouldn’t work with the
article ‘a’ in the question.
Distraction ‘education’ might be tempting but this word doesn’t collocate with ‘get a new’.
Tapescript questions 31-35
Student: Hello everyone. So I’d like to tell you about some of the challenges of living in space. We’ll start with the International Space Station – or ISS, as it’s oft en called. The ISS has been in space – in orbit around the Earth – since 1998. Over 200 astronauts have lived on board
– and one of the biggest challenges for them is living in microgravity.
So what happens when you’re living in microgravity 24 hours a day for
months? For a start, it affects your blood circulation. On Earth, your blood would naturally be pulled towards your feet, but in space, it goes
to your head. And we’ll talk a bit more about the consequences of that later. But it also goes to your chest – and that’s why astronauts have to be careful about their blood pressure. Microgravity also aff ects the minerals
stored inside your body. Over time, for example the amount of calcium inside your bones begins to decrease, so the bones become weaker. Yes, it’s not much fun living in space. The astronauts have to maintain a very strict exercise programme – they do 2.5 hours of exercise six days a week.
If they don’t, what happens is that their muscle begins to waste. Some of it also turns into fat. And one final problem that some astronauts
experience –they find that when they get back to Earth, they can’t see clearly. Scientists aren’t exactly sure why this happens, but it seems that
the astronauts’ vision can be permanently affected.
Another challenge with living in the ISS is – you have to take everything you need with you. So space agencies like NASA are constantly improving the way they recycle things. Water, of course, is a vital resource, and every little bit counts. That means that even the sweat that the
astronauts produce is recycled. I know that doesn’t sound very nice – but NASA says their water is purer than anything you’d drink on Earth.
Now listen and answer questions 36 to 40.
Student: So what’s next? Humans are already living in space – in the space station – but now the goal is to live on the moon or Mars. For
this, we need to make buildings, and the challenges for engineers and architects are even harder. It’s incredibly expensive to transport
materials into space, so they need to be as light as possible. The alternative is to use materials that already exist on the moon or Mars –
and this does seem to be the sensible way forward. So to make buildings on the moon, for example, we could use rock, and the moon also has plenty of useful minerals. These can be made into metal, into brick….
and some engineers are also suggesting they could produce paint. So it seems everything we need for a basic building might already be on
the moon. Actually, there’s one thing that NASA hasn’t managed yet, and that’s to increase the size of the windows on the ISS. They’re very
small – and if people were going to live in buildings on the moon, this is something NASA still has to work on.
So, even if we manage to create a network of buildings for people to live in on the moon or Mars – and grow food, and be self-suff icient – they would still need mental stimulation, and opportunities to relax and stay in touch with what was happening back on Earth. Virtual reality could be the answer. Imagine you’re living on the moon but you could use
virtual reality to walk around a museum and see all the exhibits. That would be incredible. And by using virtual reality, you could continue your
education, by say, studying for a qualification that might be useful in your current environment, or once you’re back on Earth. Now Mars is a diff erent…