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Ethiopia, Danakil et Dallol.


Ethiopie VOIR
LES PHOTOS


Ushuaïa Nature : "country of the Origins".

It is nevertheless this emission which justified this voyage.
We can see it directly either directly on TF1, or via the site of Ushuaia (in French):
The emission seems to be directly available.

Allibert Programm:

Document given by Allibert:  T761_Allibert_06_07.pdf .

Diaporama.

Le diaporama démarre en cliquant sur l'image ci-dessous.
Attention:



Remarque: n'utilisez pas de durée trop courtes si votre ligne internet ne suit pas.

Plate tectonics.

A fault crosses the Dead Sea, then passes on the East of Sinai, then crosses the Red Sea.
Another fault passes on south-east of coasts of the Arabic peninsula.
Another crosses the African rift.
The desert of Danakil, with Erta Ale and Dallol, seems to be at the intersection of these 3 plates...

Tectoniques en Afrique

Geology.

For the curious, I found a geological card of Dallol:

Geologie de l'Afar

The volcano Erta Ale.

It is the lucky volcano of Haroun Tazieff .

This is a sketch of december 1995:
Erta Ale 1995

This is a pciture in 2002:
Erta Ale en 2002
At that time, the diameter of the lake of lava seems broader.

Then it seems that this colossal lake get cold, to re-form a smaller one in January, 2004:
Erta Ale 2004

More explanation are available in:

The Dallol.

In fact Dallol is a volcano, we should say the Dallol volcano.
Here are what Google Earth gives:

Dallol vue du ciel

{ I do one copy and paste since the sites indicated further }
The site of Dallol is one of most extraordinary geothermal zone in the world because of its colors and its desolate environment. A long time ignored by scientists because of his insulation with the core of the Danakil desert, very unstable geopolitical zone, Dallol consist of a group of explosions crater born in a salt plain in North-north east of the volcanic chain of Erta Ale. These subaerial vents are the lowest on Earth. Most recent of them is at 48 m under the sea level. Very many coloured hot sources "decorate" the site permanently. They are as much numerous as the seepage waters come from the high ethiopiens plateaus are important (November-December). The maximum temperatures of water were measured at 70 degrees. The pH very close to 0 testifies to a very strong acidity. This one results from the interaction between water and magmatic gases: SO2 (sulphur dioxide) + H2O (water) - H2SO3 then H2SO4 (acid sulphuric).

The last eruption of this volcano was of phreatomagmatic typein 1926. The volcano was ignored for a long time of the public, contrary to Erta Ale, and only some volcanologists knew the site. It is only into 2001 that the zone was officially accessible to all, and in 2005 which we made take knowledge of this volcano to general public (In particular thanks to documentary of Ushuaïa Nature widely diffused by Nicolas Hulot, entitled the country of the origins). The volcano does not appear in the majority of the books of volcanology and geology, even current.

More explanation on:

The videos.

The Erta Ale volcano.

Here are some video take since the edge of the Erta Ale crater. For the blow, we can say that there is fire on the lake! Smoke is suffure of hydrogenates. We can breathe it without mask, but at the end of 4h, we are quite glad to find fresh air!

Lake of lava in the daytime.
10Mo

Lake of lava in the daytime.
10.9Mo

Lake of lava in the daytime.
6.9Mo

Lake of lava in the daytime.
8.2Mo

Lake of lava the night.
8.6Mo.

Lake of lava the night.
5.8Mo.

Preparation of Camels.

Les Afars (autochtone) prépare tleur chameaux tôt le matin, pour les charger de sel quelques km plus loin a la mine de sel en plaine air. Ensuite il vont vendrele  sel a 60km de là (2 jours de marche pour eux).

Afars (native) prepare tleur camels early in the morning, to load them with salt some km farther at the salt mine in lowland air. Then they will sell the salt at 60km from here (2 days of walk for them).

Camels peace.
15.8Mo.

Camels not happy...
20.5Mo.

Les Mines de Sel.


Operation 2: cut ends of correct size.
Operation 4: load on camels.
2.8Mo.

Operation 3: adjust in 20cm * 30cm.
4.9Mo.

Operation 1: take off a piece of 1m2.
8.1Mo.

Passage des 4x4 dans un passage difficile.


A 4WD which pass without problem.
11.0Mo.

A 4WD who needs to be drawn to pass.
4.0Mo.

Passage of Camels.


Nothing special...
3.0Mo.

The photos, The travel.

Average size 473Ko in 56k, or 87Ko in 56K.
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Saturday, February 16th. Weak up early in the morning to take a plane Paris-Amsterdam (8h-9h20). Then Amsterdam Addis Abeba, from 10 h 40 to 21 h 30 (gap 2 h in comparison with Paris). We arrive at Addis Abeba where the temperature is typically of 10°C in the morning, 24°C in afternoon.
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On Sunday 17th February, we run eastward straight. Altitude is about 2400m at Addis, then we goes down progressively. We discover fields when the altitude is high enough.
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At about 13 h we stop close to Basaka Lake. We eat a bit at noon in a restaurant in Awash.
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In the afternoon, we visit the Awash National Park. Altitude is about 1100m, and this becomes drier.
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This park has hot sources of water, about 35°C. We can have a swim inside I believe. We areat 850m of altitude, and temperature augments above 30°C beyond.
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We see some cows. I take a front photograph.
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We leave Awash at about 8 h 30, then we cross a village where people sell some wood on the side of the road.
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We drive towards the Northeast towards Djibouti, and we cross interesting landscapes... We stop for lunch at Mile (600m).
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In afternoon, we leave the tarmacked road at Serdo, to drive 60km full South until Awash (650m).
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We discover an interesting lake at some km of Awash...
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...with some nanny goats!
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On Tuesday 19th February, we go back to Serdo, then we come back a bit auntil Tendaho perhaps to fill up with Diesel.
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Then Ethiopian like to put towropes on a truck!
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Then we drive towards Danakil. We leave tar, to take a lane which goes full north.
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We drive an instant between 450 and 650m. In fact they are some hill north of this road, so we drive slowly on the lane.
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And we are in the  Danakil Desert . We meet some houses, isolated in a country more and more dry, and more and more occupied by fields of huge lava.
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We eat at noon in a small village, then the road goes down in the evening at 0m of altitude.
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We arrive at Afrera Lake in evening, where we visit a manufacture of salt.
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The sunset...
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...and the moon wakeup!
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It still makes 33°C in the evening.
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We slept in moonshine. Therefore the blows of moon are not dangerous. Tents were available, but in this type of places it is not très useful!
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The sunup, with still 31°C on Wednesday, February 20th.
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Short break at Afrera village.
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Enter in the  Afar Depression . The whirls of sand are somethings frequent. We eat close to a small Afar village.
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Then in the afternoon, we unwind legs by walking 3 h towards the camp of evening, with 35°C. Then we are close to Erta Ale.
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Lunch in moonshine at 19 h. The temperature goes back down at 30°C at 19 h, then 25°C at 21 h.
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The 21 Frebruary in morning,we get up early to go up on Erta Ale before it become too hot.
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Arrival close to the summit, we meet interesting concretion of lava...
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Then at 11h, we are above the lake of lava. A hole in the crust of lava is closing up...
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Here is a full view on the lake of lava. In fact it is smaller than in 2002, but more active than when Nicolas Hulot is crossed. In fact we are lucky to see that!
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Lava flows are often hollow inside, because the surface belongs get cold more quickly.
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On the edge of the outside crater, two hut allow to eat on the shade of sun.
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Before approaching the lake of lava, it is necessary first to crossing whole field of lava flow which dates from 30 years ago, I believe.
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At about 15 h 30, me get back down close to the lake of lava, after a small siesta.
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It is a rock diverted of  Obsidian . Instead to give a compact rock, the wind transforms it into hair.
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And here is the best photograph which I could take...
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Mostly, the surface is calm. But when a crust runs in depth, then some very hot lava appear on the surface by giving an interesting show..
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This becomes even more interesting when the night falls...
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It is the hour to go back down. Still some photographs with the foot...
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On Friday 22 February, we take again the 4wd at 9 h, to aim us to Dallol.
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At noon, we eat in a  Afars tent. From here, the temperature is about 32° the night and 40° in the
daytime.
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Here are locals who come to see us. Afars seems calm, but are also very curious.
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To drive in sand, trick is to never stop as long as we are not on the hard soil. Otherwise, we get entangled in sand, and we need ladders to leave again.
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We are in the evening in the village Amhed Ela. Still 38°C in the thermometer at about 17 h 30.
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Here is the oven of the bakery. Simpler than at our country!
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A woman and her child. We thought she was nice, then we are several to photograph her!
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Then I attract curiosity in the area. This also gives me opportunity to make photographs...
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Then meal in open-air. Still 32°C at 21h!
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Weakup at 5h Saturday 23rd February. We assist to the preparation of camels. Still 31°C I believe at 6h.
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Afars has a feature:the men walk with a  Kalachnikov when they are far from villages.
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One hour of walk, and we are close to a mine of roofless salt.
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Cutting up of block...
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The dromedary. They have always a interesting head. 
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30 minutes of 4wd, and we at the foot of Dallol. There is first a light rise...
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Then we discover some original form.
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Sometimes we would say mushrooms!
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And we are in front of a banquet of colour!
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Dallol is in fact a volcano: see
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dallol .
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The code of colours is the following: yellow = sulphurs, red = iron, white = sodium, green = magnesium.

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And then the descent belongs. Another original soil.
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On return we stop in front of geysers...
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A small jump with 4WD, and we stop once again in front of the mine of salt.
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A dromedary loaded with salt! Then we go back for lunch, and the temperature is 37°C.
photo_98

Then we take back 4WD to go out of Danakil. We first find volcanic landscapes without any vegetation...
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And after some hours of lane, we arrive at Berhale, located at 700m. Beer pause, then we camp for night. The temperature falls at 26°C after the meal of evening.
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Sunrise on Sunday 24 February. We camp in the courtyard of a school. The temperature fell at 16°C this morning. It is nice after hot season in the bottom.
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And at about 8h, the locals stacks up around the school. Would there be school on Sundays?
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Then we take back 4WD for the city of Mekele.
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The landscapes of lava leave place for normal rocks with a little earth. Temperatures, more merciful, allow some vegetation.
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The lane rises more distinctly. We cross pass at 2400m, culture becomes possible, and village appear more often.
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The women transport a lot of wood on the back...
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Arrival at Mekele, we are at 2100m of altitude, and stop in Axum Hotel for the night.
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Here is their typical method of building: some post in concrete supporting slabs, and then I assume that they fill with cinder block.
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Store in Mekele.
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I not saw that I have photograph an Ethiopian policeman!
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Coptic or orthodox churches.
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Then restaurant the evening, where the PA system is a bit strong at my taste.
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On Monday 25 February, we drive around in the region.
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We visit a church in Abreha Astebeha.
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Then visit of Debre Stion, where a church is planted in the top of a hill.
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This church is sharpened in the rock!
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Then the last visited village is Medharialem Adi Keho. In the corner, we use Euphorbias as hurdle.
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A church is also here.
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Then we come back at Mekele the evening after this visit.
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On Tuesday, February 26th, we take back the road for Addis. We cross a pass at 3080m (Ambalage) before falling in the valley that follows...
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On high tray, vegetation develops more, cultures in terrace appears, especially here where we are at about 2500m of altitude.
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Then we would have almost green fields...
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And then we meet a peasant who plowing with beef, as in the past for us!
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A home not very far from the lake Ashgaï!
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Then herds in number appear on these high trays! Curious after the fair desert underneath!
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Farm close to the lake Ashgaï.
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We take out again from its high tray, to find a lowland at about 1500m. It is therefore hotter and drier. The city here is Alamata.
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A road in tar is under construction between mekele and Addis, what should allow itinerary in 1 day instead of 2 nowadays.
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Some sugar cane. This can be served just like that, but one is enough for me!
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We spend the night in Kombolocha, located in 1900m. Then we leave again on Wednesday 17 February for Addis.
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We go down in a lowland at 1400m, this becomes again dry. We meet very often some straw or fine branches piled suchlike!
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Then improvise stopping at 10h for mechanics reason.
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Of blow we have the time to make photographs!
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Back transmission has been completely remove!
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Removal with a flatiron with charcoal!
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This is a very old machine for us!
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At noon, we rise just like that. We attain the pass "Window of Menilik " located at 3250m. No tree (too freshly I think), but some turf...
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We go back down a few on a huge tray located at 2900m of altitude. Then we discover this small village which recall the villages of  Schtroumpfs .
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We have the right for a small reception in music...
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Then we leave this small village to join  Addis Abeba located at 2400m.
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The evening, we eat the traditionnal Injera .
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Again a PA system very loud. I end up putting 2 boule-quiesse in my ears.
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Thursday 28 february, we visit Addis and Surroundings. Here are a women who take down 50 kg of wood for 15 Birr. An injera cost about 1 Birr by scoop.
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Here is the palace of the emperors. It is located on a hill of Addis at 3000m...
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...with a church.
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The Ethiopians make cut of  Eucalyptus...
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...which grow back easy some time afterwards.
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Meal of midday in the restaurant of the local Agency which organized the trip.
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Ornithological museum of Addis. the reconstructed crane date of 3.3 million years!
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Here is Selam, a 3-year-old child who dates of 3.2 million years.
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Then visit of the market Mercato of Addis.
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And now vacation are finish! We are going to take the plane at 23h30 at Amsterdam!

Liens.

Map

Click here to see where is this place !
Be Careful! The display of Google Map doesn't work with Opera.


Trek in the desert - stony desert - desert of Africa - Danakil - active volcano - lake of lava - mountain of Africa - 40 degree on shade - village of Ethiopia - village of Africa


Created : 01 march 2008.
Last update : 16 august 2008.

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