Тема / Топик по английскому языку:

Have you ever thought about the time when there was no radio, when flying was a dream, and cinema was only one year old? It was the time when the first motor-cars had just appeared. It was in a world such as this that in 1895 a German professor Wilhelm Konrad Roentgen discovered a new kind of invisible rays. These rays could pass through clothes, skin and flesh - and cast the shadow of the bones themselves on a photographic plate. You can imagine the impression this announcement produced at that time.

Let us see how Roentgen came to discover these all-penetrating rays. One day Roentgen was working in his laboratory with a Crookes tube. Crookes had discovered that if he put two electric wires in a glass tube, pumped air out of it and connected the wires to opposite electric poles, a stream of electric particles would emerge out of the cathode (that is, the negative electric pole).

Roentgen was interested in the fact that these cathode rays made certain chemicals glow in the dark. On this particular day Roentgen was working in his darkened laboratory. He put his Crookes tube in a box made of thin black cardboard and switched on the current to the tube. The black box was lightproof, but Roentgen noticed a strange glow at the far corner of his laboratory bench. He drew back the curtains of his laboratory window and found that the glow had come from a small screen which was lying at the far end of the bench.

Roentgen knew that the cathode rays could make the screen glow. But he also knew that cathode rays could not penetrate the box. If the effect was not due to the cathode rays, what mysterious new rays were causing it? He did not know, so he called them X-rays.

Roentgen placed all sorts of opaque materials between the source of his X-rays and the screen. He found that these rays passed through wood, thin sheets of aluminium, the flesh of his own hand; but they were completely stopped by thin lead plates and partially stopped by the bones of his hand. Testing their effect on photographic plate he found that they were darkened on exposure to X-rays.

Roentgen was sure that this discovery would contribute much for the benefit of science. Indeed, medicine was quick to realize the importance of Roentgen’s discovery. The X-rays are increasingly used in industry as well.

Topical Vocabulary

рентгеновские лучи
- to discover a new kind of invisible rays
открыть новый тип невидимых лучей
pass through clothes, skin and flesh
проникать сквозь одежду, кожу и тело
to cast the shadow of smth. on a photo-graphic plate
отбрасывать тень чего-либо на фотографической пластинке
to produce an impression
произвести впечатление
- to discover all-penetrating rays
открыть всепроникающие лучи
a Crookes tube
трубка Крукса
an electric wire
электрический провод
to connect the wires to opposite electric poles
подсоединить провода к противоположным электрическим полюсам
a stream of electric particles
поток электрических частиц
the cathode
- to make certain chemicals glow
вызывать свечение некоторых материалов
black cardboard
черный картон
to switch on the current to smth.
подключить ток к чему-либо
a screen
- to penetrate the box
проникать сквозь коробку
to cause smth.
вызывать что-либо
- opaque materials
непрозрачные материалы
the source of X-rays
источник рентгеновских лучей
lead plates
свинцовые пластины
to test an effect on smth.
проверить воздействие на что-либо
to be darkened on exposure to X-rays
темнеть при попадании рентгеновских лучей
- to contribute much for the benefit of science
внести большой вклад в науку
to be quick to realize smth.
быстро обнаружить что-либо
to be increasingly used in
все шире использоваться в какой-либо области

Answer the questions:

  1. How can the time of Rontgen’s discovery be described?
  2. What experiment was Roentgen making when he discovered a new type of rays?
  3. How did he discover the rays?
  4. What qualities do the X-rays possess?
  5. In what ways are the X-rays used at present?

Translate into English:

  1. В 1855 году Вильгельм Рентген открыл новый тип невидимых лучей, которые проникали через различные материалы.
  2. Он поместил трубку Крукса в светонепроницаемый ящик и увидел странное свечение в углу лаборатории.
  3. Поскольку известные ему лучи не могли проникать сквозь ящик, данный эффект вызывали неизвестные ему лучи; он назвал их «икс-лучи».
  4. Рентген обнаружил, что «икс-лучи» проходят через многие непрозрачные материалы - дерево, алюминий и т. д., но лишь частично проникают сквозь кости человеческого тела и задерживаются свинцовыми пластинами.
  5. Открытие Рентгена внесло большой вклад в развитие науки и все шире используется в промышленности.