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【高级听力】美国英语听力80篇(Lesson46)  

2016-05-16 16:07:10|  分类: 【英语】听力 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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 Igor Sikorsky (B)
Igor Sikorsky left Russia at the start of the revolution in 1917.
He stayed for a while in Britain and France.
Then he went to the United States.
He arrived with little money and no real chances for work.
America's aviation industry was new and very small.
There were no jobs.
In 1923, however, he got help from a group of Russian exiles in the United States.
They gave him enough money to start his own aviation company, Sikorsky Aero Engineering.
It was on Long Island east of New York City.
Sikorsky's greatest success during this period was designing seaplanes.
These planes could land on ground or on water.
They could fly long distances.
The Pan American airline company used them to fly from North America to Central and South America.
In 1929, the Sikorsky company became part of the United Aircraft Corporation.
The re-organized company produced a series of large planes known as flying boats.
These planes were big enough and powerful enough to fly across oceans.
They made it possible to move people and goods quickly from the' United States to Europe and Asia.
Passengers on flying boats rested in soft seats.
They ate hot meals.
Air travel had become fun, as well as safe.
By 1938, Igor Sikorsky decided to experiment with hellcopters again.
It had been thirty years since his first unsuccessful attempts.
Through those years, he had written down ideas for possible new designs.
The first helicopter Sikorsky built in America was the VS300.
It was a skeleton of steel tubes.
In its first test flight, it rose about a meter off the ground. Sikorsky then tested nineteen more designs.
The final design had one main rotator,or rotor.
The rotor was connected to three long blades on top.
These blades turned around like an album on a record player.
They lifted the helicopter into the air.
A smaller rotor, with shorter blades, was at the back end.
Those blades turned around like the wheel of a car.
They kept the body of the helicopter pointed forward.
This remained the basic design of all Sikorsky helicopters.
By 1941, the VS300 had set all world records for helicopter flight.
Military versions were made and some were used in the last years of World War Two.
Most people, however, still did not accept the new flying machine.
They said the helicopter had to prove its worth.
It did that during the war in Korea in the early 1950s.
Helicopters take off straight into the air.
They can land just about anywhere.
They do not need long airport runways like planes.
During the Korean War, helicopters flew into battle areas to rescue wounded soldiers.
They flew the men quickly to medical centers set up away from the fighting.
This greatly improved the men's chances of survival.
Igor Sikorsky, the man most responsible for successfully designing and building helicopters,
thought helicopters would be a common form of transportation.
People, he said, would use them instead of automobiles.
They would fly into a city, land on top of a building, go to work, then fly home again.
This has not happened.
Privately-owned helicopters are not common.
Yet helicopters have proved their value in other ways.
Companies use them to transport heavy equipment to hard-to-reach places.
Farmers use them to put insect poisons on their crops.
And emergency teams use them to rescue people from fires and floods.
Igor Sikorsky continued as an engineering adviser to his aircraft company until he died in 1972.
He was one of the best known and most respected leaders in international aviation.
He received more than ninety major awards and honors from many countries and organizations.
He always said, however, that his greatest satisfaction did not come from receiving honors.
It did not come from being the first person to design new kinds of aircraft.
Igor Sikorsky said his greatest satisfaction came from knowing



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