雅思阅读高频词汇·交通类

日期:2018/11/09  |  
雅思阅读高频词汇·交通类

Passage 1 First Headlamps

A

Before electricity, light was tricky business. Flames cast limited light, are vulnerable to winds and weather, and can lead to disaster. Making fire portable and dependable was so difficult that lights on moving vehicles were hardly ever considered.

 

B

The early trains traveled only during the day. The tracks were too dangerous during the dark of night, and passengers wanted to see where they were traveling anyway. In the late 1830s, railroad traffic became heavy enough for freight trains to delay passenger trains. To avoid these delays, railroads started running freight trains at night. Horatio Allen’s 1831 innovation, the “Track Illuminator,” was suddenly in demand. It

was a pile of pine knots burning in an iron grate that sat in a box of sand on a platform car. The car was pushed ahead of the locomotive. The illuminator did not cast much light, but it warned of the approaching train and was the best technology available.

 

C

In 1841, some trains used an oil lamp backed by a curved reflector, an improvement, but oil lamps blew out easily in the wind, including the wind generated by the movement of the train. At about the same time, Schenectady and Troy Railroad trains displayed a whale oil lamp positioned between a reflector and a lens about twelve inches high; it threw light up to 100 feet ahead of the train. Although this was an improvement, the braking distance the trains required was more than the 100 feet of track that were illuminated. In 1849, a calcium lamp was developed that threw light 1,000 feet and lasted four hours; however, the only railroad company to use it was Camden and Amboy. Limelights, which were used to light theater stages on both sides of the Atlantic, were considered too intense for trains. Eventually, acetylene, which did not extinguish in the wind, replaced oil in headlamps.

 

D

In 1851, the first electric headlamp was developed. This headlamp had two major drawbacks: It required its own generator, which did not become portable until the 1890s when steam generators became common, and the delicate parts broke easily as a result of the rough rails over which the trains traveled. Russia ran the first train equipped with a battery-powered electric headlamp. The French first used steam generators to power electric headlamps on trains. In the United States in 1897, George C. Pyle developed an efficient electric headlamp. By 1916, federal law required trains to have electric headlamps.

 

E

Automobiles, the exciting new mode of transportation at that time, needed headlamps, too. The requirements for car headlamps were more stringent than those for trains: Because roads were even rougher than rails, cars required more rugged parts, and the steam generators had to be smaller than those in trains. Despite these tougher requirements, the Columbia Electric Car was equipped with electric headlamps in 1898.

 

F

Electric headlamps made travel at all hours and in almost all weather possible, something we take for granted today.

 

Word Families

noun

efficiency

Efficiency is an important quality for any new product.

adjective

efficient

Efficient headlamps made safe travel at night possible.

adverb

efficiently

Candles do not light a room very efficiently.

 

noun

generator

If the power lines are down, you can use a gasoline generator to have electricity in your house.

noun

generation

The generation of electricity can cause air pollution.

verb

generate

There are a variety of ways to generate electricity.

 

noun

illuminator

An illuminator can provide an area with light.

noun

illumination

The illumination of an electric lamp is stronger than that of a candle.

verb

illuminate

In the past, people used candles to illuminate their houses.

 

noun

innovation

The innovation of electric headlamps made travel much easier.

noun

innovator

Several innovators worked on the development of electric headlamps.

adjective

innovative

The development of electric headlamps was the work of a number of innovative people.

 

noun

intensity

A locomotive needs a headlamp with high intensity.

verb

intensify

Using a stronger battery will intensify light.

adjective

intense

The light from candles is not very intense.

adverb

intensely

Some materials burn more intensely than others.

 

noun

reflector

A reflector on a lamp makes the light more intense.

noun

reflection

You can see your reflection in a mirror.

verb

reflect

A piece of metal can be used to reflect light.

adjective

reflective

If a lamp is coated with reflective material, it will cast a stronger light.

 

Passage1 Major Subways of Europe

Public transportation is an intrinsic part of every modern city. Many big cities have an underground rail system as their centerpiece. Three of the biggest and busiest underground rail systems in Europe are in London, Paris, and Moscow. The character of each city imprints its railways.

The first of these subways was London's Underground, which opened in 1863. By that time, horses and pedestrians had so clogged the streets of London that city government ruled that no railroads could enter the city except underground. The method used for laying the first underground tracks is called “cut and cover,” meaning the streets were dug up, the track was laid, a tunnel was built, and then everything was buried. Although the method was disruptive, it worked. Steam engines chugged under London, releasing steam through vents along the city streets. In its initial day of operation, the London Underground carried 30,000 passengers.

This cut-and-cover method caused massive disruptions in the city and required the destruction of the structures above the tunnel, A better means of expanding the original Underground was needed, and builders did not have to look far to find it. London was also home to the first underwater tunnel, a pedestrian tunnel that had been built under the Thames River in 1825, made possible by the engineer Marc Brunel. He had devised a way of supporting the tunnel while the workers dug, called the Brunel Shield. Two young engineers improved the Brunel Shield for use in expanding the London Underground. The new Harlow-Greathead Shield carved a circular tube more than seven feet in diameter, which is why the London Underground is called the Tube. By then, the tunnels could be deeper than the original ones because electric train engines had become available. These trains did not have to be close to the surface to release steam. The shield could be used to dig deeper tunnels without destroying the surface structures above them.

Paris started designing an underground rail service to rival London's. The first part of its system was not opened until the World’s Fair and Olympics were held in that city in 1900. The Paris Metro is shorter than London’s, but it carries more passengers every day, second in Europe only to Moscow. Whereas London’s Underground is known for its engineering, Paris’s Metro is known for its beauty. The stations and entrances are examples of art nouveau architecture, and they are decorated with mosaics, sculptures, paintings, and innovative doors and walls.

The Moscow Metro opened in 1935. It was based on the design of the London Tube, except much of the track is above ground. When Stalin came to power, he used the stations as showcases of Russian art, culture, and engineering. The underground Moscow stations are filled with statuary, painting, and mosaics.

Underground railways are not only for transportation. During World War II, all three underground systems were used as bomb shelters for the populace. The Moscow subway was even used as a military headquarters. Stores and malls have sprung up by stations, something that is especially convenient in cold climates.

All three systems are continuing to expand, providing service to more riders in more distant locales. This is all part of an effort to decrease greenhouse gases emitted from personal vehicles.

Word Families

noun

architect

The architect is working on a plan for a new train station.

noun

architecture

The architecture of the stations is an important part of subway system design.

adjective

architectural

From an architectural point of view, it’s a very interesting building.

adverb

architecturally

Its art nouveau decorative features make the Paris Metro architecturally significant.

 

noun

decoration

People enjoy looking at the decorations in the station while they wait for the train to arrive.

noun

decorator

The decorator planned the art for the station very carefully.

verb

decorate

Sometimes they decorate the trains for the holidays.

adjective

decorative

That column is there for decorative purposes only; it has no real use.

 

noun

destruction

The destruction of buildings was part of the process of creating the subway system.

verb

destroy

It was necessary to destroy some buildings to dig the subway tunnels.

adjective

destructive

Digging deeper tunnels makes subway construction less destructive to buildings and roads on the surface.

 

noun

disruption

Building a subway system can cause a lot of disruptions to traffic on the streets.

verb

disrupt

They try to disrupt traffic as little as possible during subway construction.

adjective

disruptive

The process of building a subway can be disruptive, but the result is well worth it.

 

noun

expansion

The expansion of the subway system cost a great deal of money.

verb

expand

By the time they were ready to expand the subway system, a new method for digging tunnels had been developed.

adjective

expandable

The subway system was designed to be expandable.

 

noun

operation

The Paris Metro began operation in 1900.

noun

operator

A subway train operator needs special training for the job.

verb

operate

Modern subway systems use computers to operate the trains.

 

Passage 3 Electric Cars Around the Globe

Cars have reshaped our world since they first rolled off mass-production lines in the early twentieth century. One-and two-thousand-year-old Roman roads have been replaced by highways. Longer and wider bridges span rivers. The sharp division between urban and rural landscapes has been replaced by suburban sprawl, town and country linked by eight-lane expressways with stop-and-go traffic. Gas stations are everywhere. Countries with oil reserves are enormously rich and powerful. After a century, the romance with internal combustion engines is on the wane. As the price of oil rises, the reserves of irreplaceable oil are consumed, and exhaust fumes hamper rife in urban areas, alternatives to gas-powered vehicles are becoming more attractive.

In the early twentieth century in North America, electric cars shared the roads with gas-fueled cars, but after a short time, gas-fueled cars became the standard. Although electric cars were quieter, cleaner, and easier to start, they were not able to travel the required distances, and their plodding speed failed to capture the imagination.

Lately, in Europe and in Asia, where commuting distances are shorter and gas is more expensive than in the United States, electric cars have grown in popularity. Electric recharging stations are appearing in cities. The government of China has offered monetary incentives to car manufacturers for each electric car they manufacture as well as to the people who purchase the electric cars. Taxi drivers in Tokyo have embraced electric vehicles. Major car manufacturers, including Mitsubishi, Nissan, Toyota, and Mercedes Benz, all offer electric cars everywhere but in North America.

In North America, slow, short-ranged electric vehicles with a high initial cost have thus far appealed to a limited audience. An American electric car that appeared briefly in the 1990s had a cruising speed of twenty-five miles per hour and could travel eighty-five miles on a single charge. Since then, battery technology has improved markedly. More recently, a North American company introduced an electric sports car that can travel 300 miles on a single charge and accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds, similar to the best sports car. The hope is that North Americans will embrace the new technology when they see an electric car as appealing as a conventional sports car.

Other American auto manufacturers are marketing electric cars as they do in Europe, as commuter cars. The design of many of these cars is innovative: Some are made of light composites and seat only two people. One is a three-wheeler that is classified as a motorcycle. Another electric car, the Tango, is five inches narrower than a large motorcycle and seats two, one behind the other. Four of these vehicles fit in a single parking space. The vehicle is marketed as a great way to drive between lanes of stopped traffic.

All electric cars will help to reduce exhaust and greenhouse gases; some will do it with greater flair than others.

 

Word Families

noun

appeal

The appeal of an electric car is that it doesn’t cause pollution.

verb

appeal

A car that uses less gasoline would appeal to commuters.

adjective

appealing

Electric cars are appealing to many people.

 

noun

class

Thee new class of electric cars is very different from the electric cars of the early twentieth century.

noun

classification

The classification of a car as a sports car can make it more appealing to certain people.

verb

classify

If you classify your car as a commercial vehicle, you will need to get a special license.

 

noun

commuter

Commuters are worried about the increase of traffic on the highways.

noun

commute

I have an hour-long commute to work every day.

verb

commute

Many people commute from the suburbs to their jobs in the city.

 

noun

consumer

Consumers of gasoline are paying higher and higher prices.

noun

consumption

As the price of oil increases, consumption may go down.

verb

consume

Electric cars are attractive because they don’t consume gasoline.

 

noun

mark

The new hybrid vehicles have made their mark with consumers.

verb

mark

The twenty-first century marked a renewed interest in electric cars.

adjective

marked

In the past, before cars became common, the difference between urban and rural areas was more marked.

adverb

markedly

The popularity of electric cars has grown markedly over the past few years.

 

noun

money

Although cars cost a great deal of money, many people own them.

adjective

monetary

As gasoline becomes more expensive, monetary reasons will cause more people to be interested in buying electric cars.

adverb

monetarily

Electric cars may be out of reach for some people monetarily.

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