STILL ON TRANSLATION IN GENERAL (cont.)
In this issue, an oil and gas expert (O&G E) and author with over 30 years of experience in the industry, continues interviewing Monica Machado with some important questions about translation in general.
O&G E – What do you do when you come across some expressions or text which you do not understand?
MM – Anything I don’t know or don’t understand is thoroughly researched. For text that I find difficult to understand, I usually query the client. The authors are well positioned to clarify any doubts involving text meaning. For technical details or terminology I also use the Internet, which is a fantastic library of resources. I also have reliable sources of information in the office, such as good technical dictionaries compiled and published by reliable sources such the EU or standard organisations, some of which are no longer in print.
O&G E – The oil and gas industry is rich in unusual technical terms that mean nothing to the outside world. How do you translate terms like moon pool or nodding donkey?
MM – Fortunately oil and gas documents are usually intended for the industry, so the readers know the concepts and the English terminology so some terms are often left in English. However, for documents submitted to governmental institutions for approval it is essential that the text is clear and that those terms are not left untranslated. Some governments don’t accept foreign terminology. Consequently, it is essential to know what the terms mean and try to explain them if there is not a Portuguese term. Then, we can use the English term inside brackets to make the connection between the two. For instance, a nodding donkey is a lift pump so in Portuguese I would translate as “bomba de tipo nodding donkey” (nodding donkey-type pump). As for moon pool, an opening feature of marine drilling platforms, drillships and diving support vessels, for example, to access the sea and through which equipment can be passed through, we can call it “abertura da plataforma na direcção do poço (moonpool)” (platform opening in the direction of the well), if such opening is in a platform and there is a well. This means that it is essential for translation to know what we are talking about. If there is no well yet, or no well is to be drilled, or there is no platform, then we have to rephrase the translation accordingly.
Interview published in Issue 2 of the Company’s Newsletter.
Picture: On-site work
This interview was first published in Monica Machado Translation Services Quarterly Newsletter. This and other interviews with Mónica can be read here.
Mónica Machado offers English to Portuguese Translation Services, for Portuguese-speaking African countries such as Angola, Mozambique, Guinea-Bissau, Cape Verde, Portugal and Sao Tome and Principe in the areas of Oil and Gas, Agriculture and Farming, Environment, Shipping, Mining, Hydro Power, HSE and Social Sciences and International Humanitarian Aid. Fully certified translation services based in the UK. We can also translate and certify translations of educational qualifications, passports, company certificates of incorporation, birth and marriage certificates and similar documents.
Comments are closed