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Spiders Can Use Electricity To Fly Hundreds Of Miles

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Photo Credit: www.mentalfloss.com

Sometimes, on a rainy day, when a predator is at bay, or if they want to migrate away, spiders whip out their silk, and balloon away. “Ballooning” has been a mystery for over a century already and now scientists are finally beginning to understand it.

Charles Darwin started being curious about how these wingless spiders can fly so far when he found thousands of them on the deck of the HMS Beagle ship on October 31, 1832. The ship was 60 miles offshore, which means the spiders must have floated over from the Argentinian mainland. These tiny red spiders, each a millimetre wide, were spotted all over the ship. “All the ropes were coated and fringed with gossamer web,” wrote Darwin.

What Is Ballooning?

Even though spiders have no wings they can still take to the air and fly away. Spiders have even been found two and a half miles up in the air and 1,000 miles out to sea. How do they do this? By ballooning. Ballooning is the behavior in which a spider climbs to an exposed point, raise their abdomens to the sky, extrude strands of silk, and float away.

It was believed that ballooning worked because the silk catches wind, dragging the spider with it. Although since spiders only balloon during light winds, that doesn’t make much sense. Some spiders are quite large, therefore it seems unlikely that such a light breeze could be strong enough to carry them aloft, or to generate the high accelerations of arachnid takeoff. Darwin found the speed of the spiders’ travel to be “quite unaccountable” and its cause to be “inexplicable.”

How Does Ballooning Work?

A duo from the University of Bristol, Erica Morley and Daniel Robert, have figured out the mystery of how ballooning really works. They discovered that spiders can actually sense the Earth’s electric field, and use it to launch themselves into the air. What’s impressive, is that the electric fields can even provide them with a lift without the slightest breeze.

Where Does The Electricity Come From?

The Earth’s atmosphere is basically a giant electrical circuit due to the 40,000 thunderstorms that crackle around the world every single day. These thunderstorms act like a giant battery for the atmosphere, charging up and maintaining the electric fields. Even on sunny, cloudless days, the air still carries around 100 volts for every meter above the ground. On stormy, foggy days, that number rises to tens of thousands of volts per meter. The highest reaches of the Earth’s atmosphere (ionosphere) have a positive charge while the planet’s surface has a negative one.

Photo Credit: www.superiorwallpapers.com

The ballooning spiders operate within this planetary electric field. The moment their silk leaves their bodies, it picks up a negative charge. The similar negative charges are repelled on the surfaces on which the spiders sit, generating enough force to lift them into the air. Spiders can increase those forces by crawling onto leaves, twigs or even grass. How do they increase those forces by just crawling on plants? Plants have the same negative charge as the ground, but they protrude into the positively charged air causing substantial electric fields between the air around them and the tips of their leaves and branches.

Testing The Spiders

The idea of ballooning behavior caused by electrostatic repulsion was first proposed in the 1800s but was dismissed without being tested. Then in 2013 the idea was brought back to life by a physicist, Peter Gorham, who showed that it was mathematically plausible. Now most recently, Morley and Robert were interested to see if the spiders actually responded to the electric fields and their fluctuations, so they tested it with actual spiders.

In order to show that the spiders can detect electric fields they put them on vertical strips of cardboard in the center of a plastic box, then generated electric fields between the floor and ceiling. They generated similar strengths of electricity to what the spiders would naturally experience outdoors. The fields caused tiny sensory hairs on the spiders’ feet to ruffle up. These sensory hairs are called trichobothria, which the researchers believe is what the spiders use to detect electricity. “It’s like when you rub a balloon and hold it up to your hairs,” Morley said.

Once the spiders’ trichobothria were ruffled they performed a set of movements called tiptoeing. Tiptoeing is when the spider stands on the end of their legs and stick their abdomens in the air, which is a behavior only ever seen when ballooning. Despite being in closed boxes with no airflow, many of the spiders managed to take off. But once Morley turned off the electric fields within the boxes, the spiders dropped.

Conclusion

The same hairs that allow spiders to sense electric fields also help them to detect wind speed or direction, so it’s possible that air currents might also play a role in ballooning. Nonetheless, Morley and Robert’s study reveals that electrostatic forces are, on their own, enough to propel spiders into the air.

The researchers published this study in Current Biology.

This article (Spiders Can Use Electricity To Fly Hundreds Of Miles) was originally created for Intelligent Living and is published here under Creative Commons.

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Innovation

BMW Develops Turbocharged Electric Wingsuit That Lets You Fly At 186 Mph

BMW is hoping that it can revolutionize extreme sports by turbocharging wingsuits to reach blazing speeds of up to 186 miles per hour.

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BMW Develops Turbocharged Electric Wingsuit That Lets You Fly At 186 Mph
Photo Credit: BMW

(TMU) German automotive giant BMW is hoping that it can revolutionize extreme sports by turbocharging wingsuits to reach blazing speeds of up to 186 miles per hour (300-km/h).

Conventional wingsuit flying began as an extreme sport in the late 90s, with humans wearing the flying squirrel-like suits – also known as birdman suits and bat suits –to glide as they fell from enormous heights to navigate narrow canyons, caves, and gorges.

Since then, wingsuit flying has proved its staying power and become a veritable genre of its own on YouTube, with dozens of videos sponsored by the likes of GoPro and Red Bull showing the exploits of daring wingsuit flyers who use gravity to reach blistering speeds.

However, engineers at BMW’s Designworks studio have now created a wingsuit that would be equipped with a set of electric impellers that pump out 20 horsepower, allowing wearers to reach speeds that were previously unthinkable, reports New Atlas.

The experimental wingsuit is the brainchild of Peter Salzmann, an Austrian stuntman who linked up with the German carmaker to push the extreme sport past the limits.

The final result is this wingsuit fitted with chest-mounted, electric-powered contraption with two 25,000 rpm, 5-inch impellers.

Salzmann is a seasoned wingsuit flyer whose top speed can reach a formidable 62 mph. However, after some time the extreme sport seems less like actual flying and more like prolonged, albeit extreme, falling.

But with this new BMW propulsion system that reaches 186 mph, your typical wingsuit flyer can feel less like a flying squirrel and more like a rising eagle who can actually regain altitude – at least for as long as the suit’s electrical charge lasts.

This speed demon’s dream device has been tested in specialized wind tunnels and has been used in 30 different test jumps. In a video showing the wingsuit’s first public demonstration, an airborne Salzmann can be seen soaring past the Del Brüder mountain peaks of the Austrian Alps.

In the video, the seasoned stuntman and two other stuntmen wearing normal, analog wingsuits can be seen jumping out of a helicopter at 10,000 feet. They soon begin to fly in formation before Salzmann breaks from them and flies over a mountain peak. Meanwhile, his mates in unpowered wingsuits are forced to fly around it.

“In a relaxed atmosphere one evening after a day of testing, we threw out lots of ideas about how we could improve performance,” Salzmann said in a press release“One of them was a supporting motor – and it’s an idea I just couldn’t shake. I found the idea of being able to jump from my local mountain wearing the wingsuit and land in my garden fascinating.”

It still remains unclear whether BMW plans to go beyond releasing that one epic video, and plans to release these turbocharged wingsuits to consumers. So far, this wild invention seems to be a component in a promotional campaign for its new electric SUV, the iX3.

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Astronomy

Study Analyzes Apollo 15 Images & Finds Evidence Of “Excavation” & Unusual Structures On Moon

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Unusual Structures On Moon
Photo Credit: Collective Evolution

With so much information and misinformation in many different areas these days, it can be hard to know what to believe or what to trust. How did we get into this position? It seems there is a great divide on a number of different topics, and the Moon is no doubt one of them. Is it really that difficult to look at information and arrive at some sort of truth? I don’t believe so, but the most important thing is to be able to discuss information and ideas transparently, openly while having the ability to see from another perspective as well. If we cling to certain beliefs and positions and become polarized in them, we are not really opening ourselves up to new possibilities that may change the way we think and perceive not only our world, but ourselves.

What Happened: A study published in the Journal Space Exploration in 2016 provides an in depth analysis of images taken from Apollo 15 as well as the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. According to the authors, there appears to be “two unusual features in the crater Paracelsus C on the far side of the moon,” the side that is never visible from Earth. By combining multiple images it becomes clear to them that what they are looking at are two walls “on either side of a narrow valley or passageway.”

Using single image shape from shading and 3D terrain visualization we show in a computer generated perspective view looking northeast that the southwest end appears to be the entrance to the passageway. A reverse angle view looking southwest shows the passageway ending at a rise of terrain at the other end, possibly leading underground. The terrain surrounding the two structures is not flat but appears “excavated” by some unknown mechanism, natural or artificial. It is shown that these objects are visually different from the lunar background because their underlying structure is different.

The paper provides evidence supporting the hypothesis that certain features in the crater Paracelsus C on the far side of the moon may be artificial in origin.

The idea that these “passageways” may lead underground on the Moon correlates with the idea that the Moon may in fact be hollow, or at least partially. According to MIT’s Sean C. Solomon:

“The Lunar Orbiter experiments vastly improved our knowledge of the Moon’s gravitational field…indicating the frightening possibility that the Moon might be hollow.”

This was as far back as 1974, and it’s been a common theme. It arises due to the fact that we know very little about the Moon and all of the other Moon’s within our solar system. That being said, the majority of scientific evidence points towards a solid Moon, but that doesn’t mean artificially built compartments within it are not a possibility.

It’s easier to explain the non-existence for the Moon, than its existence – NASA scientist Robin Brett

The best explanation for the Moon is observational error – the Moon doesn’t exist – Irwin Shapiro, Harvard Astrophysicist

The paper concludes by stating:

“Based on the evidence presented in this paper we believe this area in Paracelsus C is one such candidate that is worthy of future study by orbital missions and surface rovers. Both of the features analyzed in this area are statistically different from the surrounding terrain.”

Mark J. Carolotto, one of the authors of this paper is an image scientist with almost 40 years of experience in satellite remote sensing, image analysis, digital image processing, satellite imaging, remote sensing and pattern recognition. He studied optics, signal and image processing at Carnegie-Mellon University from 1972-1981 where he received his Ph.D. in electrical engineering, and he works within the aerospace industry. Here are some of the peer-reviewed papers he’s authored and co-authored prior to this one.

On his YouTube channel, he provides some images from the paper in a video titled “Unusual Structures On The Far Side of The Moon.”

Possible Structures On The Moon. Not A Novel Idea/Observation

Reports and hypothesis about artificial structures on the moon are quite common, and have been a common theme for quite some time. During the early years of SETI, in 1963, Carl Sagan spoke about the possibility of extraterrestrial visitation, as pointed out by the study:

It is not out of the question that artifacts of these visits still exist, or even that some kind of base is maintained (possibility automatically) within the solar system to provide continuity for successive expeditions. Because of weathering and the possibility of detection and interference by the inhabitants of the Earth, it would be preferable not to erect such a base on the Earth’s surface. The Moon seems one reasonable alternative. Forthcoming high resolution photographic reconnaissance of the Moon from space vehicles – particularly the back side – might bear these possibilities in mind. 

A number of books have been written over the years contemplating the subject. Amateur astronomer George Leonard’s 1976 book, Somebody Else is on the Moon is one example. Fred Steckling’s 1981 book, We Discovered Alien Bases on The Moon is another, and there are many more.

You can click on the titles if you want to head over to Amazon and get a copy of any of them.

Fast forward to today and it’s hard to find solid evidence for structures on the Moon, but there are some strange leaks and testimony from people with interesting backgrounds that does make one ponder. For example, a classified document published by Wikileaks clearly implies that the United States had a “secret” base on the Moon that was destroyed by Russia. The idea that this is or was a reality is strengthened given the fact that the U.S. government had plans to build a base on the Moon. Perhaps they already did? The leak from Wikileaks is dated 1979, a document from the government’s own publishing office from 1966 clearly shows one of the goals of the United States government was to build a base on the moon.

memorandum that was addressed to the CIA director regarding “Military Thought (Top Secret)” by Lieutenant General Korenevskiy highlights this point even more. It also appears to be from the 1960’s:

“Already, interest in the moon is not limited to a study of questions and a discussion of discovered potentialities. Specific projects are being worked out which propose the construction of various structures under the surface of the moon from the freight compartments of missiles, and also the employment of various versions of pneumatic structures. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and also various American companies (“matin”, “Aerospace”, etc), are conducting a great deal of work in this direction.

Another document that compliments the Wikileaks one, also from the 1960’s comes from the CIA keeping tabs on Soviet space plans, a portion of it reads as follows:

“The soviets have additionally stated their intention to establish a lunar base subsequent to manned lunar landing…If Society manned lunar landing is undertaken as a follow-on to extensive earth orbital operations and instrumented exploration of the moon, it is likely that they will enjoy some advantage in the establishment of a lunar base….It is possible that a late lunar landing may be followed fairly rapidly by the establishment of a Soviet base on the moon.”

The idea that humans may have built structures on the Moon, as well as perhaps intelligent extraterrestrials currently or in the past is a hypothesis contemplated by many, so why do some people see it as ridiculous? This is a deeper question for later.

Rejecting Evidence Because It Conflicts With Our Beliefs

I thought it was interesting that the authors of the paper state the following:

A decidedly conservative mainstream scientific establishment often rejects anomalies based on subject matter alone, i.e., there cannot be alien artifacts on the moon because there are no alien artifacts on the moon (or other planets). Such a view is an example of circular reasoning, based on the belief that extraterrestrials do not exist, or if they do exist that they could not have travelled to our solar system.

How much do our beliefs and perceptions about our world limit and hinder our ability to discover and acknowledge ideas and results that may not “fit the frame?” How much do we limit our consciousness and perceptions about our world, who we truly are and what we are capable of as a result of our beliefs, and our determination to say “this is the way things are.”

Cassandra Vieten, Phd and President/CEO at the Institute of Noetic Sciences, which was founded by Apollo 14’s Dr. Edgar Mitchell touches upon this point in her piece, “When Skeptics Face The Evidence.

There seems to be a deep concern that the whole field will be tarnished by studying a phenomenon that is tainted by its association with superstition, spiritualism, and magic. Protecting against this possibility sometimes seems more important than encouraging scientific exploration or protecting academic freedom. But this may be changing. The session I presented in was very well-attended, and I found that most people, while not exactly open-minded, were open-hearted, thoughtful, and willing to engage in respectful discussion about the topic.

Why This Is Important

The implications of any findings that suggest an extraterrestrial presence have enormous implications and would truly expand human consciousness to another level. The UFO/Extraterrestrial phenomenon and the proof for its existence goes much further than what is provided in this article.

The way we perceive our world, technology, history, metaphysics, consciousness and the very nature of reality would change in an instant if this were realized by the collective. Perhaps it would inspire us to question the way we live here on Earth and why we do what we do. Do civilizations that travel the stars have such difficulty implementing solutions on their planet? What type of consciousness do they operate from? Do they collaborate peacefully, or divide themselves by country and ethnicity?

If we had technology that allowed us to provide abundance for all, which many believe we do, could we enact these solutions given the fact that we are so divided? Are we currently stuck in a state with fear, chaos, greed, and an egoic mind-sets for us to even successfully implement solutions? Are solutions like highly advanced clean energy technology useless if the consciousness of the human race and the way we think doesn’t change?

It’s not solutions or technology that will change our planet, it’s the place from within of those who operate these technologies that will determine whether or not we are ready for such things – this is us.

Change starts within, and perhaps humanity needs a new way of thinking and way of seeing our world, as well as ourselves, in order to move forward. Too often we point our fingers and place the blame on others like the ‘global elite,’ without ever realizing that ‘they,’ are us too, and we’re in this story together. We perpetuate our own human experience based on where we are at mentally and spiritually. It will be difficult to tackle the challenges we face today if we don’t step out of ourselves and observe our planet and the way we live from an outside perspective. We may simply perpetuate our current human experience if we attempt to tackle our problems from the same level of consciousness that created these problems.

This article (Study Analyzes Apollo 15 Images & Finds Evidence of “Excavation” & Unusual Structures on Moon) was originally created for Collective Evolution and is published here under Creative Commons.

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Astronomy

Astronomers Discover The Most “Hellish” Planet Ever

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Astronomers Discover The Most “Hellish” Planet Ever
Photo Credit: NASA

Jocelyne LeBlancGuest Writer

The most “hellishplanet that’s ever been found is believed to rain rocks, has very deep lava seas, and extreme wind speeds.

The planet, which is called K2-141b, is located approximately 200 light-years away from us and was first detected by the Kepler Space Telescope in 2018. Now researchers from McGill and York Universities have predicted the weather conditions and they are extremely hellish to say the least.

K2-141b is considered a “super Earth” and is about five times larger than our planet. It orbits its host star in an exceptionally short amount of time of just 0.3 Earth days. It is located just 665,000 miles from its host star. For comparison, the closest planet to our sun is Mercury and it takes 88 days to complete a full orbit at an average distance of around 36 million miles with a surface temperature that can reach as high as 840 degrees Fahrenheit.

K2-141b has magma oceans that are 60 miles deep.

According to the study, the rocky K2-141b planet has 60-mile deep lava seas, over 3,000 miles per hour wind speeds, and surface temperatures reaching more than 5,000 degrees Fahrenheit. It is tidally locked which means that only one side of the planet faces its star at all times. Actually, it is so hot on the dayside that it can vaporize rock. However, temperatures on the night side are completely opposite at -328 degrees Fahrenheit which is cold enough to freeze nitrogen. The extreme change in temperatures is the reason why the wind speeds are at a whopping 3,000 mph.

Giang Nguyen, who is the lead author of the study, stated that the entire planet is made up of rocks, from its surface, to the ocean, and even the rain. The sodium, silicon monoxide, and silicon dioxide evaporates, rises up into the atmosphere, becomes condensed, and comes back down into the magma ocean as “rain” even though there are rocks falling from the sky. They were able to predict the weather by conducting several computer simulations.

Astronomers Discover The Most “Hellish” Planet Ever
(An artist’s impression of the planet)

Professor Nicolas Cowan from McGill University and who is a co-author of the study, said, “All rocky planets­, including Earth, started off as molten worlds but then rapidly cooled and solidified. Lava planets give us a rare glimpse at this stage of planetary evolution.”

Now they have to wait and see whether or not their predictions are correct and they’re hoping that the data collected from the Spitzer Space Telescope and the upcoming launch of the James Webb Space Telescope will give them more information regarding the planet’s extreme weather conditions.

Their study was published in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Recommended Articles by Jocelyne LeBlanc
About the Author

Jocelyne LeBlanc works full time as a writer and is also an author with two books currently published. She has written articles for several online websites, and had an article published in a Canadian magazine on the most haunted locations in Atlantic Canada. She has a fascination with the paranormal and ghost stories, especially those that included haunted houses. In her spare time, she loves reading, watching movies, making crafts, and watching hockey.

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Innovation

After Nikola Tesla Proved Wireless Electricity Was Possible, A Startup Finally Made It A Reality

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After Nikola Tesla Proved Wireless Electricity Was Possible, A Startup Finally Made It A Reality
Photo Credit: Getty

Matt Agorist, The Free Thought Project

Nikola Tesla is not the subject of American social studies or science classes. American children do not learn about him in school and this is in spite of the fact that he is considered one of the most influential scientists ever. His visions were motivated by altruism and providing a benefit to all of humanity, not just those who can afford it. One of the ways Tesla envisioned helping the world was providing it with extremely low-cost, or even free, electricity. But with the cost of wires running across continents, this was a futile task. So, Tesla thought outside of the box — getting the wires out of the picture entirely.

Now, his vision is finally coming to fruition.

In 1901 Tesla began his work of a large high-voltage wireless energy transmission station called the Wardenclyffe Tower which was a wireless prototype transmitter for a “World Wireless System” that was to broadcast both information and power worldwide. Over a century ago, Tesla even demonstrated that his technology worked to investors, but they pulled out and the facility was never completed. Establishment science then told the world that his inventions would never work.

But they were wrong.

Fast-forward to 2020 and a startup company named Emrod says it has figured it out.

As Popular Mechanics reports, in a statement, Emrod founder Greg Kushnir says he was motivated by New Zealand’s particular set of skills, à la Liam Neeson in Taken.

“We have an abundance of clean hydro, solar, and wind energy available around the world but there are costly challenges that come with delivering that energy using traditional methods, for example, offshore wind farms or the Cook Strait here in New Zealand requiring underwater cables which are expensive to install and maintain.”

By removing the requirement for electricity to travel through wire, Emrod can fulfill Tesla’s desire to bring energy to those who cannot afford the infrastructure or those who live in difficult terrain.

There are also environmental benefits to the technology as many places uses diesel generators or other fossil fuels to relay electricity from place to place. Emrod’s technology will remove the need for these stations.

“Energy is transmitted through electromagnetic waves over long distances using Emrod’s proprietary beam shaping, metamaterials and rectenna technology,” Emrod explains.

It is safer too.

Emrod uses beams in the ISM (Industrial, Scientific, and Medical) band with frequencies commonly used in WiFi, Bluetooth, and RfID.

Point-to-Point transmission means that power is beamed directly between two points. There is no radiation around the beam, as there is with high voltage wire transmission.

Low power laser safety curtain ensures that the transmission beam immediately shuts down before any transient object (such as a bird or helicopter) can reach the main beam ensuring it never touches anything except clean air.

As PM notes, technology like this would seem implausible because of issues like the loss of signal fidelity over the transmission through the air then through a series of mediating technologies. But Emrod’s relay technology, which it says “refocuses the beam,” doesn’t use any power, and loses almost none.

Kushnir tells New Atlas:

“The efficiency of all the components we’ve developed are pretty good, close to 100%. Most of the loss is on the transmitting side. We’re using solid state for the transmitting side, and that’s essentially the same electronic elements you can find in any radar system, or even your microwave at home. Those are at the moment limited to around 70% efficiency. But there’s a lot of development going into it, mainly driven by communications, 5G and so on.”

Kushnir says that the original setup will be fairly low, sending a few kilowatts over a few kilometres. However, he says that scaling up in order to send “unfathomable” amounts of energy over longer distances can be done, hypothetically, by making larger rectennas.

While every generation is astonished by the advancement of technology, few generations have predicted technological advancements so far before they happened, and the accuracy with which Tesla did it is mind boggling.

Imagine the world today if Tesla’s visions were allowed to come to fruition had his work not been seized by the government. Sadly, however, that was not the case.

Only two days after his death, the FBI ordered the U.S. Office of Alien Property to seize all of Tesla’s belongings. Tesla’s entire estate from the Hotel New Yorker, and other New York City hotels, was transported to the Manhattan Storage and Warehouse Company under OAP seal.

In an instant, this genius man’s entire life’s work became the property of the government to further their militaristic escapades.

However, not all was lost; as TFTP reported, several new geniuses would rise up and follow in Tesla’s footsteps. People like Jim Murray would diligently devote their lives to understanding this great man, and in turn, create paradigm shifting technologies like the SERPS (Switched Energy Resonance Power Supply) device.

This highly specialized electronic circuit has the ability to “Magnify” the effective power applied to it by nearly 50 times. When Jim coupled his device with his friend Paul Babcock’s patented ultrafast five nanosecond switching technology, they achieved a 4790% increase in electrical power compared to the input. This type of performance, if commercialized, would cause the largest electric utility companies to shake in their boots.

It’s been nearly 8 decades since his death, and through companies like Emron, Tesla is still helping to make the world a better place — in spite of government schools making no mention of his contributions to humanity.

The views in this article may not reflect editorial policy of Collective Spark.

About the Author

Matt Agorist is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world. Agorist is also the Editor at Large at the Free Thought Project. Follow @MattAgorist on TwitterSteemit, and now on Minds.

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