sponsored links
TEDGlobal>London

Francesco Sauro: Deep under the Earth's surface, discovering beauty and science

フランチェスコ•サウロ: 地下深く、美と科学を探して

September 29, 2015

洞窟探検家で地質学者のフランチェスコ•サウロは、地底に隠れた大陸を旅して、人類がかつて到達しえなかった、深く暗い地球内部を調べています。南アメリカの壮観なテプイ(テーブルマウンテン)では、隔絶のうちに進化を遂げた新種の鉱物や昆虫を発見し、またその異世界の知識を生かして、宇宙飛行士を訓練しています。

Francesco Sauro - Speleologist
Francesco Sauro studies caves and other karst features, and his research takes him places no one has ever been before. Full bio

sponsored links
Double-click the English subtitles below to play the video.
I would like to invite you
これから皆さんを
00:12
to come along on a visit
闇の大陸へと
00:14
to a dark continent.
ご招待します
00:16
It is the continent hidden
それは地表の下に
00:18
under the surface of the earth.
隠れている大陸です
00:19
It is largely unexplored,
まだ大半が未調査で
解明の進まない
00:21
poorly understood,
and the stuff of legends.
伝説のような所です
00:24
But it is made also of dramatic landscapes
この巨大な地下広間のような
00:26
like this huge underground chamber,
ドラマチックな景観と
00:29
and it is rich with surprising
biological and mineralogical worlds.
驚くべき生物や鉱物の世界が
豊かに広がっています
00:32
Thanks to the efforts of intrepid voyagers
in the last three centuries --
過去3世紀の
勇敢な探検家たちの努力により
00:37
actually, we know also thanks
to satellite technology, of course --
また衛星技術のおかげもあって
00:42
we know almost every single square meter
of our planet's surface.
私たちは地球表面を
ほぼ くまなく把握しています
00:46
However, we know still very little
about what is hidden inside the earth.
でも内部に隠れた部分は
まだ少ししか分かっていません
00:50
Because a cave landscape,
like this deep shaft in Italy, is hidden,
このイタリアの深い縦穴の様に
洞窟の姿は隠れているため
00:55
the potential of cave exploration --
the geographical dimension --
その探索の有望性や
地理的な特徴は
01:01
is poorly understood and unappreciated.
理解も評価も不足しています
01:05
Because we are creatures
living on the surface,
私たちは地球表面の生物なので
01:07
our perception of the inner
side of the planet
地球内部についての
私たちの認識は
01:10
is in some ways skewed,
ある意味 歪んでいます
01:14
as is that of the depth of the oceans
ちょうど 大海の深みや
01:16
or of the upper atmosphere.
大気上層についての
認識と同様に
01:19
However, since systematic cave exploration
started about one century ago,
ですが 1世紀ほど前から
洞窟の系統的調査が始まり
01:22
we know actually that caves exist
in every continent of the world.
洞窟がどの大陸にも
存在することが分かりました
01:29
A single cave system,
like Mammoth Cave, which is in Kentucky,
ケンタッキー州にある
マンモスケーブのように
01:34
can be as long
as more than 600 kilometers.
総延長が 600km以上の
洞窟システムもあります
01:38
And an abyss like Krubera Voronya,
which is in the Caucasus region,
コーカサス地方にある
クルベラ洞窟は
01:43
actually the deepest cave
explored in the world,
かつて探索された
最も深い洞窟で
01:47
can go as far as more than 2,000
meters below the surface.
最深部は地表から
2,000m以上の深さです
01:50
That means a journey of weeks
for a cave explorer.
それほど深いと
探検には何週間もかかります
01:54
Caves form in karstic regions.
洞窟はカルスト地帯にできます
01:59
So karstic regions are areas of the world
カルスト地帯では
02:02
where the infiltrating water
along cracks, fractures,
割目や裂目から
水がしみこんで
02:05
can easily dissolve soluble lithologies,
溶けやすい岩を溶かすことで
02:09
forming a drainage system
of tunnels, conduits --
トンネルや水路の
排水システムができます
02:13
a three-dimensional network, actually.
三次元ネットワークです
02:16
Karstic regions cover almost 20 percent
of the continents' surface,
カルスト地帯は大陸表面の
ほぼ20%を占めています
02:18
and we know actually that speleologists
in the last 50 years
洞穴学者たちは
過去50年の間に
02:24
have explored roughly 30,000 kilometers
of cave passages around the world,
世界中で約3万kmもの
洞窟路を調査してきました
02:29
which is a big number.
大きな数字です
02:35
But geologists have estimated
that what is still missing,
しかし地質学者たちの
見積もりでは
02:36
to be discovered and mapped,
まだ発見や
地図作成を待っている洞窟が
02:41
is something around 10 million kilometers.
1,000万kmもあるそうです
02:43
That means that for each meter
of a cave that we already know,
つまり既知で探検済みの
02:47
that we have explored,
洞窟1mに対し
02:50
there are still some tens of kilometers
of undiscovered passages.
未知の洞窟が何十kmもある
ということです
02:51
That means that this is really
an endless continent,
まさに果てしない大陸で
02:57
and we will never be able
to explore it completely.
決して調べ尽くせないでしょう
03:00
And this estimation is made
without considering other types of caves,
しかも これに含まれない
洞窟もあります
03:04
like, for example, inside glaciers
or even volcanic caves,
たとえば氷河内の洞窟とか
火山性の洞窟 —
03:07
which are not karstic,
but are formed by lava flows.
カルストと違い
溶岩流によってできます
03:12
And if we have a look at other planets
like, for example, Mars,
また火星のような
他の惑星が示すように
03:15
you will see that this characteristic
この地形は
03:21
is not so specific of our home planet.
地球固有ではありません
03:23
However, I will show to you now
that we do not need to go to Mars
しかし
エイリアンの世界を探るのに
03:27
to explore alien worlds.
火星へ行くまでもないのを
お見せします
03:31
I'm a speleologist, that means
a cave explorer.
私は洞穴学者
つまり洞窟探検家です
03:35
And I started with this passion
when I was really young
洞窟への情熱の初まりは
まだ私が子供の頃
03:39
in the mountains not far
from my hometown in North Italy,
北イタリアの故郷から
そう遠くないアルプスや
03:43
in the karstic regions of the Alps
and the Dolomites.
ドロミーティ山脈の
カルスト地帯でした
03:47
But soon, the quest for exploration
brought me to the farthest corner
しかし未知の大陸への
03:51
of the planet, searching
for new potential entrances
新たな入口を求める
私の探究は
03:54
of this undiscovered continent.
やがて地球の最果ての地へ
行き着きました
03:57
And in 2009, I had the opportunity
to visit the tepui table mountains,
2009年 機会あって訪れた
テーブル状の山々テプイは
04:00
which are in the Orinoco
and Amazon basins.
オリノコ川とアマゾン川の
流域にありますが
04:05
These massifs enchanted me
from the first time I saw them.
その一群の大きな山塊に
一目で虜になりました
04:08
They are surrounded by vertical,
vertiginous rock walls
目がくらむような
垂直の断崖に囲まれ
04:13
with silvery waterfalls
that are lost in the forest.
銀色の滝が森へ消えてゆく
04:16
They really inspired in me
a sense of wilderness,
その原始の姿には心打たれ
04:19
with a soul older than millions
and millions of years.
何百万年も生き続ける
魂の存在を感じました
04:23
And this dramatic landscape
inspired among other things
この劇的な景観から
着想を得たものの1つが
04:27
also Conan Doyle's
"The Lost World" novel in 1912.
コナン•ドイルの1912年の小説
『失われた世界』ですが
04:31
And they are, really, a lost world.
ここはまさに
“失われた世界”です
04:35
Scientists consider those mountains
as islands in time,
科学者はこの山々を
“時の孤島”と考えています
04:40
being separated
from the surrounding lowlands
周りの低地から分離されたのは
04:46
since tens of millions of years ago.
何千万年も前のことです
04:48
They are surrounded
by up to 1,000-meter-high walls,
高さ1,000mにも及ぶ壁に囲まれ
04:51
resembling a fortress,
impregnable by humans.
難攻不落の要塞のようです
04:55
And, in fact, only a few
of these mountains have been climbed
実際 登頂され調査された山は
04:58
and explored on their top.
数えるほどしかありません
05:01
These mountains contain also
a scientific paradox:
科学的パラドックスもあります
05:04
They are made by quartz,
この山は石英でできています
05:07
which is a very common mineral
on the earth's crust,
地殻にごくありふれた鉱物です
05:09
and the rock made up by quartz
is called quartzite,
石英からなる岩を
珪岩と言いますが
05:12
and quartzite is one of the hardest
and least soluble minerals on earth.
珪岩は地上で最も硬く
最も溶けにくい鉱物です
05:17
So we do not expect at all
to find a cave there.
そんな所に洞窟なんて
あるとは思いません
05:22
Despite this, in the last 10 years,
speleologists from Italy,
でもここでは過去10年間
05:25
Slovakia, Czech Republic,
and, of course, Venezuela and Brazil,
ベネズエラやブラジルをはじめ
イタリア スロバキア チェコから
05:30
have explored several caves in this area.
専門家が集まり
洞窟を探検しています
05:34
So how can it be possible?
一体どういうことでしょう?
05:37
To understand this contradiction,
we have to consider the time factor,
この矛盾を理解するには
時間の要因を考えましょう
05:40
because the history of the tepuis
is extremely long,
テプイの歴史は極端に長く
05:44
starting about 1.6 billion years ago
with the formation of the rock,
16億年前の
岩の形成に始まり
05:47
and then evolving with the uplift
of the region 150 million years ago,
1億5千万年前の
土地の隆起によってできました
05:52
after the disruption
of the Pangaea supercontinent
パンケア超大陸が分裂して
05:58
and the opening of the Atlantic Ocean.
大西洋ができた頃の話です
06:01
So you can imagine that the water had tens
or even hundreds of millions of years
想像してみて下さい
何千万年 何億年の歳月をかけ
06:04
to sculpt the strangest forms
on the tepuis' surfaces,
水が テプイの表面を
奇妙な形に彫り 裂目を開き
06:10
but also to open the fractures
and form stone cities, rock cities,
あの有名なテプイの景観を
特徴づける
06:14
fields of towers which are characterized
in the famous landscape of the tepuis.
都市のように林立する岩や
石塔が並ぶ荒野を形作るのを
06:20
But nobody could have imagined
しかしその長い間に
内部で何が起こったのか
06:26
what was happening inside a mountain
in so long a time frame.
誰も予想できませんでした
06:27
And so I was focusing in 2010
on one of those massifs,
2010年 私は山の一つ
アウヤンテプイに取組みました
06:32
the Auyán-tepui, which is very famous
because it hosts Angel Falls,
エンジェルフォールで
有名な山です
06:36
which is the highest
waterfall in the world --
落差が世界最大の滝で
06:40
about 979 meters of vertical drop.
979m 垂直に落下しています
06:43
And I was searching for hints
of the existence of cave systems
私は衛星画像を使って
06:47
through satellite images,
洞窟システムの存在を
示すものを探しました
06:52
and finally we identified an area
of collapses of the surface --
そして大巨礫や
積み重なる石のある
06:54
so, big boulders, rock piles --
表面が陥没した一帯を
遂に見つけました
06:59
and that means that there
was a void below.
これは下に空洞がある事を
示しています
07:01
It was a clear indication that there
was something inside the mountain.
山の内部に何かあると
はっきりわかりました
07:04
So we did several attempts
to reach this area,
そこで陸路やヘリで
その場所へ辿り着こうと
07:08
by land and with a helicopter,
何度か試みましたが
とても困難でした
07:13
but it was really difficult
because -- you have to imagine
考えてみてください
07:15
that these mountains are covered
by clouds most of the year, by fog.
この山々は ほぼ一年中
雲や霧に覆われ
07:18
There are strong winds,
強い風が吹き
07:23
and there are almost 4,000 millimeters
of rainfall per year,
年間雨量は
4,000mm近くにもなります
07:24
so it's really, really difficult
to find good conditions.
好条件を見つけるのが
本当に難しく
07:29
And only in 2013 we finally
landed on the spot
ようやく降り立てたのは
2013年のことでした
07:32
and we started
the exploration of the cave.
そうして洞窟調査を始めました
07:37
The cave is huge.
巨大な洞窟です
07:40
It's a huge network under the surface
of the tepui plateau,
テプイ台地表面下にある
巨大ネットワークです
07:42
and in only ten days of expedition,
たった10日という調査期間で
07:46
we explored more than 20 kilometers
of cave passages.
20km以上もの洞窟路を
探査しました
07:50
And it's a huge network
of underground rivers,
地下水路網や 大きな広間や
極めて深い縦穴のある
07:54
channels, big rooms,
extremely deep shafts.
巨大なネットワークでした
07:59
So it's really an incredible place.
本当に信じ難い場所です
08:04
And we named it Imawarì Yeuta.
“イマワリ•イェウタ”と
名付けました
08:07
That means, in the Pemón indigenous
language, "The House of the Gods."
原住民ペモン族の言葉で
“神々の家”を意味します
08:10
You have to imagine that indigenous people
have never been there.
原住民が訪れたことがあるとは
考えられません
08:16
It was impossible for them
to reach this area.
彼らには到達が
不能な場所でした
08:20
However, there were legends
about the existence
でも彼らの伝説には
08:24
of a cave in the mountain.
山中の洞窟が出てくるんです
08:26
So when we started the exploration,
そこで調査にあたって
08:28
we had to explore with a great respect,
細心の注意と敬意を払いました
08:30
both because of the religious beliefs
of the indigenous people,
なぜなら原住民の信仰があり
08:32
but also because
it was really a sacred place,
神聖な場所だったからです
08:35
because no human had entered there before.
なにしろ 前人未踏の地です
08:38
So we had to use special protocols
私たちの存在で
環境を汚さないよう
08:41
to not contaminate the environment
with our presence,
特別な手順を決め
08:43
and we tried also to share
with the community,
また 原住民の人々と
08:46
with the indigenous community,
our discoveries.
発見を分かち合う事にしました
08:48
And the caves represent, really,
a snapshot of the past.
この洞窟は長い歳月の跡を
留めています
08:51
The time needed for their formation
形成にかかった時間は
08:56
could be as long as 50 or even
100 million years,
おそらく5千万年から
1億年にもなるでしょう
08:59
which makes them possibly the oldest caves
that we can explore on earth.
地球上で行くことのできる
最古の洞窟かもしれません
09:04
What you can find there
is really evidence of a lost world.
目にするものはまさしく
失われた世界の痕跡です
09:10
When you enter a quartzite cave,
珪岩洞窟に入る時は
09:17
you have to completely forget
what you know about caves --
今までの知識は
全て忘れてください
09:19
classic limestone caves
or the touristic caves
おなじみ鍾乳洞や
09:22
that you can visit
in several places in the world.
世界各地にある
観光用の洞窟とは違います
09:25
Because what seems
a simple stalactite here
ここで普通そうに見える
鍾乳石は
09:28
is not made by calcium carbonate,
but is made by opal,
炭酸カルシウムではなく
オパールでできています
09:30
and one of those stalactites can require
tens of millions of years to be formed.
これ一本できるのに
何千万年かかったことでしょう
09:36
But you can find even stranger forms,
like these mushrooms of silica
もっと変な形の
キノコ型シリカも
09:42
growing on a boulder.
巨礫の上に生えています
09:46
And you can imagine our talks
when we were exploring the cave.
探検中の会話が
想像つくでしょう
09:48
We were the first entering
and discovering those unknown things,
こんな未知の物体を見つける
最初の一行です
09:52
things like those monster eggs.
怪獣の卵みたいなのもあり
09:57
And we were a bit scared
because it was all a discovery,
発見の数々に
少し怖くなりました
10:00
and we didn't want to find a dinosaur.
恐竜まで見つけそうで
10:04
We didn't find a dinosaur.
いませんでしたけど
10:06
(Laughter)
(笑)
10:08
Anyway, actually, we know
that this kind of formation,
ともあれ
色々な研究結果を通じて
10:10
after several studies,
このような生成物は
10:13
we know that these kinds of formations
are living organisms.
生命体によるものだと
わかっています
10:15
They are bacterial colonies using silica
to build mineral structures
これはバクテリアのコロニーで
シリカを使った鉱物構造です
10:19
resembling stromatolites.
ストロマトライトのような
10:24
Stromatolites are some of the oldest
forms of life that we can find on earth.
ストロマトライトは現生する
最古の生命体の一つです
10:26
And here in the tepuis,
ここテプイにおいて
興味深いのは
10:31
the interesting thing is that these
bacteria colonies have evolved
このバクテリアコロニーが
10:32
in complete isolation
from the external surface,
外部から完全に隔離されて
10:37
and without being in contact with humans.
人類と接触することなく
進化してきた点です
10:41
They have never been
in contact with humans.
一度も接触はありませんでした
10:44
So the implications
for science are enormous,
科学的にとても
大きな意味があります
10:47
because here you could find,
for example, microbes
この場所で 例えば
10:50
that could be useful to resolve
diseases in medicine,
病気の治療に有効な微生物や
10:54
or you could find even a new kind
of material with unknown properties.
未知の特性の新素材が
見つかるかもしれません
10:59
And, in fact, we discovered in the cave
a new mineral structure for science,
実際 ここで科学的に新しい
鉱物構造を発見しました
11:03
which is rossiantonite,
a phosphate-sulfate.
リン酸塩-硫酸塩鉱物
ロシアントナイトです
11:07
So whatever you find in the cave,
even a small cricket,
洞窟内で見つかる全てが
小さなコオロギまで含め
11:11
has evolved in the dark
in complete isolation.
闇の中で 完全に隔離され
進化してきたんです
11:16
And, really, everything that you can feel
in the cave are real connections
この洞窟で感じるのは
11:20
between the biological
and the mineralogical world.
生物界と鉱物界の間にある
繋がりです
11:24
So as we explore this dark continent
そんなわけで
この闇の大陸を調査し
11:28
and discover its mineralogical
and biological diversity and uniqueness,
その鉱物的 生物的な多様性と
独自性を見出していくうちに
11:34
we will find probably clues
about the origin of life on our planet
地球の生命の起源の手がかりも
見つかるかもしれません
11:40
and on the relationship
and evolution of life
そして生命進化と
鉱物界とのつながりも
11:45
in relationship with the mineral world.
わかるかもしれません
11:48
What seems only a dark, empty environment
この暗くて空虚にしか
見えない環境が
11:51
could be in reality a chest of wonders
実は役立つ情報に満ちた
11:55
full of useful information.
驚きの宝庫なのかもしれません
11:57
With a team of Italian, Venezuelan
and Brazilian speleologists,
イタリア ベネズエラ
ブラジルから集った
12:01
which is called La Venta Teraphosa,
“ラ•ヴェンタ•テラフォーサ”
探検チームとともに
12:05
we will be back soon to Latin America,
私たちはすぐ南米へ戻ります
12:09
because we want to explore other tepuis
in the farthest areas of the Amazon.
アマゾン最深部にある
他のテプイを調べたいんです
12:11
There are still very unknown mountains,
まだほどんど未知の
山々があります
12:16
like Marahuaca, which is almost
3,000 meters high above sea level,
例えば標高が 3,000m近い
マラワカ山や
12:19
or Aracà, which is in the upper region
of Rio Negro in Brazil.
ブラジルのネグロ川上流にある
アラカ山などです
12:24
And we suppose that we could find there
even bigger cave systems,
さらに大きな洞窟システムが
見つかる可能性があります
12:28
and each one with its own
undiscovered world.
そして その独自で
未知なる世界も —
12:33
Thank you.
ありがとうございました
12:38
(Applause)
(拍手)
12:39
Bruno Giussani: Thank you, Francesco.
Give me that to start so we don't forget.
(ブルーノ•ジュッサーニ)
ありがとう リモコン預かります
12:45
Francesco, you said we don't need
to go to Mars to find alien life,
未知の生命を探しに
火星に行くことないと言いつつ
12:48
and indeed, last time we spoke,
you were in Sardinia
確か最後に話した時
サルデーニャで
12:52
and you were training European astronauts.
欧州の宇宙飛行士を
訓練中でした
12:55
So what do you, a speleologist,
tell and teach to the astronauts?
洞穴学者が
何を教えるんですか?
12:57
Francesco Sauro: Yeah, we are --
it's a program of training
(フランチェスコ・サウロ)
訓練プログラムには
13:01
for not only European, but also NASA,
Roskosmos, JAXA astronauts, in a cave.
欧州に限らず NASA
ロスコスモスやJAXAもいます
13:04
So they stay in a cave
for about one week in isolation.
参加者は洞窟に隔離され
1週間過ごします
13:09
They have to work together
in a real, real dangerous environment,
大変危険な環境下で
一緒に働く必要があります
13:12
and it's a real alien environment for them
because it's unusual.
普通とは異なる
本当に宇宙のような環境です
13:16
It's always dark. They have to do science.
They have a lot of tasks.
常に暗闇の中 科学を使い
多くの任務をこなします
13:20
And it's very similar to a journey to Mars
火星への旅や
国際宇宙ステーションに
13:24
or the International Space Station.
よく似ているんです
13:27
BG: In principle.
FS: Yes.
(ジュッサーニ) 原理的には
(サウーロ) そう
13:29
BG: I want to go back
to one of the pictures
(ジュッサーニ)
あの写真に戻れますか
13:30
that was in your slide show,
スライドの写真を
13:32
and it's just representative
of the other photos --
まさに代表する一枚です
13:34
Weren't those photos amazing? Yeah?
どれも素晴らしかったですね?
13:36
Audience: Yeah!
(観客) 素晴らしかった!
13:39
(Applause)
(拍手)
13:40
FS: I have to thank the photographers
from the team La Venta,
(サウロ) ラ•ヴェンタ隊の
写真家に感謝します
13:43
because all of those photos
are from the photographers.
全て彼らによるものですから
13:47
BG: You bring, actually, photographers
with you in the expedition.
(ジュッサーニ)
写真家も連れて行ったんですね
13:50
They're professionals,
they're speleologists and photographers.
洞窟探検家 兼 写真家を
13:54
But when I look at these pictures,
I wonder: there is zero light down there,
見ていて不思議だったんですが
光が全くない所で
13:57
and yet they look incredibly well-exposed.
信じがたい程
よく露光してます
14:02
How do you take these pictures?
どうやって?
14:05
How do your colleagues,
the photographers, take these pictures?
同僚の方は
どう撮るんですか?
14:06
FS: Yeah. They are working
in a darkroom, basically,
(サウロ)
まるで暗室にいるように
14:09
so you can open the shutter of the camera
カメラのシャッターを開け
14:12
and use the lights
to paint the environment.
照明で環境を描き出すんです
14:14
BG: So you're basically --
(ジュッサーニ)
こうやって…
14:17
FS: Yes. You can even keep
the shutter open for one minute
(サウロ) そう
1分ほどシャッターを開け放し
14:18
and then paint the environment.
周りを照らしていくと
14:21
The final result is what
you want to achieve.
結果的に欲しい絵がとれます
14:22
BG: You spray the environment with light
and that's what you get.
(ジュッサーニ)
光をふりまいた結果なんですね
14:25
Maybe we can try this at home
someday, I don't know.
家でも試してみましょうか
14:28
(Laughter)
(笑)
14:30
BG: Francesco, grazie.
FS: Grazie.
(ジュッサーニ) ありがとう
(サウロ) こちらこそ
14:31
(Applause)
(拍手)
14:33
Translator:Tsuyoshi Orihashi
Reviewer:Yasushi Aoki

sponsored links

Francesco Sauro - Speleologist
Francesco Sauro studies caves and other karst features, and his research takes him places no one has ever been before.

Why you should listen

Italian speleologist Francesco Sauro is fascinated by the tabletop mountains of South America, the tepuis. These plateaus, which tower over the Brazilian and Venezuelan rainforest, hide behind their dramatic landscape a lost world of extensive cave structures. They harbor unique geological and biological features that have evolved in isolation over millennia.

With nearly twenty years of caving experience, Sauro has participated in research in many cave systems all over the world, but keeps coming back to the tepuis, where he has led six expeditions since 2009. He leads also a caves training program for European astronauts.

sponsored links

If you need translations, you can install "Google Translate" extension into your Chrome Browser.
Furthermore, you can change playback rate by installing "Video Speed Controller" extension.

Data provided by TED.

This website is owned and operated by Tokyo English Network.
The developer's blog is here.