Average Mechanical Engineer Salary : Unveiling the Lucrative Earning Potential


The average salary for mechanical engineers is approximately $87,370 per year. Mechanical engineers play a crucial role in designing, analyzing, and manufacturing various types of mechanical systems and equipment.

They work in various industries such as automotive, aerospace, energy, and manufacturing. Apart from the salary, other factors such as experience, education, location, and company size can also impact the earning potential of mechanical engineers. We will explore the average salary of mechanical engineers in different industries and provide insights into the factors affecting their compensation.

So, if you are considering a career in mechanical engineering or want to know how your salary compares to industry standards, read on to find out more.

Average Mechanical Engineer Salary  : Unveiling the Lucrative Earning Potential

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Table of Contents

Factors Affecting Salary In Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical engineering is a dynamic field that offers a wide range of opportunities for professionals. If you are considering a career in this field, it is essential to understand the factors that can influence your salary. In this section, we will explore the key aspects that can play a role in determining the average salary of a mechanical engineer.

Let’s delve into each of these factors:

Education And Degree Requirements

  • Advanced degrees, such as a master’s or ph.d. In mechanical engineering, can lead to higher salary prospects in this field.
  • A bachelor’s degree is typically the minimum requirement for entry-level positions in mechanical engineering.
  • Engineering programs accredited by abet (accreditation board for engineering and technology) can enhance your employability and potential earning potential.

Specializations And Industry Demands

  • Specializations within mechanical engineering, such as aerospace engineering, automotive engineering, or mechatronics, can impact salary levels.
  • Industries with high demand for mechanical engineers, like automotive, aerospace, or robotics, may offer higher salaries due to their competitive nature.

Job Level And Experience

  • The level of your job, such as entry-level, mid-level, or senior-level, can significantly impact your salary.
  • Experience plays a crucial role in salary determination. With more years of experience, you may command a higher salary due to your expertise and professional accomplishments.

Geographic Location

  • Location also affects salary in mechanical engineering. Salaries can vary significantly based on where you work.
  • Cities with a high cost of living or areas with strong industry presence may offer higher salaries to attract and retain mechanical engineering talent.

These factors collectively contribute to the salary structure in mechanical engineering. By considering your education, specialization, experience, and location, you can gauge the potential salary range within this field. Keep in mind that salary is not solely determined by these factors, as individual negotiation skills, market conditions, and company policies can also influence your earnings.

Remember to continually update your skills and knowledge to stay competitive in the ever-evolving field of mechanical engineering.

Salary Ranges For Entry-Level Mechanical Engineers

Median Salary For Entry-Level Engineers

  • The median salary for entry-level mechanical engineers varies based on factors such as education, experience, and industry. Here are the average salary ranges for entry-level mechanical engineers:
  • With a bachelor’s degree: $60,000 – $70,000 per year
  • With a master’s degree: $70,000 – $80,000 per year

Please note that these figures are approximate and can vary depending on the specific job market and location.

Salary By Degree Level

  • The level of education can significantly impact the salary of entry-level mechanical engineers. Here are the average salary ranges based on degree level:
  • Bachelor’s degree: $60,000 – $70,000 per year
  • Master’s degree: $70,000 – $80,000 per year

Obtaining a higher level of education can potentially lead to increased earning potential in the field of mechanical engineering.

Salary By Industry

  • The industry in which a mechanical engineer works can also influence their salary. Here are average salary ranges based on different industries:
  • Manufacturing industry: $60,000 – $70,000 per year
  • Aerospace industry: $70,000 – $80,000 per year
  • Automotive industry: $65,000 – $75,000 per year
  • Energy industry: $65,000 – $75,000 per year

These figures are general estimates and can vary depending on factors such as company size, location, and individual qualifications.

Salary By Location

  • Geographic location is another significant factor that can affect the salary of entry-level mechanical engineers. Here are average salary ranges based on different locations:
  • California: $70,000 – $80,000 per year
  • Texas: $65,000 – $75,000 per year
  • New york: $70,000 – $80,000 per year
  • Florida: $60,000 – $70,000 per year

Please note that salaries can also be influenced by factors such as cost of living and demand for mechanical engineers in specific regions.

These salary ranges serve as a general guideline and can be subject to change based on various factors. It’s important for individuals to research the specific job market and industry trends in order to negotiate an appropriate salary for their qualifications and circumstances.

Mid-Level Mechanical Engineers: Earning Potential

Salary Growth At Mid-Career Stage

  • Mid-level mechanical engineers enjoy substantial salary growth compared to entry-level engineers.
  • With increasing experience and expertise, these professionals can expect a significant boost in their earning potential.

Factors Affecting Salary Increase

  • Experience: The number of years spent in the field plays a crucial role in salary growth. As mechanical engineers gain more experience, their value in the job market increases, leading to higher pay.
  • Skills and knowledge: Acquiring specialized skills and staying updated with the latest technological advancements can significantly impact salary growth. Mechanical engineers with expertise in cutting-edge tools and software are in high demand and can command higher salaries.
  • Education and qualifications: Higher education degrees, such as master’s or doctorate degrees, can result in higher-paying job opportunities. Additionally, certifications or licenses can demonstrate advanced knowledge and skills, enhancing earning potential.

Demand For Experienced Engineers

  • The demand for experienced mechanical engineers remains consistently high across various industries.
  • Employers value the expertise and problem-solving abilities that seasoned engineers bring to the table.
  • Mid-level mechanical engineers with a proven track record of successful projects and a strong understanding of industry standards are highly sought after by companies.

Industries With Higher Salary Potential

  • Oil and gas: The oil and gas industry often offers lucrative opportunities for mechanical engineers due to the complex machinery and equipment involved in extraction, refining, and transportation processes.
  • Aerospace and defense: This industry requires highly skilled mechanical engineers to design and develop advanced aircraft, drones, and defense systems.
  • Automotive: With constant innovation in the automotive industry, mechanical engineers specializing in vehicle design, hybrid/electric technology, and autonomous systems can expect rewarding career prospects.
  • Renewable energy: As the world increasingly focuses on sustainability, mechanical engineers involved in developing renewable energy solutions, such as wind turbines and solar panels, can benefit from higher earning potential.

Mid-level mechanical engineers experience significant salary growth compared to entry-level professionals. Factors such as experience, skills, education, and the demand for experienced engineers all contribute to higher earning potential. Opportunities in industries like oil and gas, aerospace, automotive, and renewable energy provide attractive salary prospects for mid-level mechanical engineers.

Senior Mechanical Engineers: Climbing The Salary Ladder

Although the starting salary for mechanical engineers is already quite competitive, many professionals in this field aspire to climb the seniority ladder, aiming for higher salaries and enhanced job opportunities. Senior mechanical engineers often possess extensive experience and expertise, allowing them to take on more complex projects and responsibilities.

In this section, we will explore the salary range for senior engineers, the factors that influence their earnings, the opportunities for career advancement, and the top-paying industries for senior engineers.

Salary Range For Senior Engineers:

  • Senior mechanical engineers can expect a higher salary range compared to entry-level or mid-level engineers. The exact salary can vary depending on factors such as location, industry, company size, and individual qualifications and experience.
  • The average salary for senior mechanical engineers in the united states is around $100,000 to $130,000 per year.
  • However, it is important to note that salaries can go beyond this range, with some senior engineers earning well over $150,000 annually, especially in high-demand industries or regions with a higher cost of living.

Factors Influencing Salary At Senior Level:

  • Experience plays a crucial role in determining the salary of senior mechanical engineers. Those with more years of experience tend to command higher salaries due to their valuable expertise and problem-solving abilities.
  • Advanced degrees, such as a master’s or ph.d. In mechanical engineering, can also contribute to higher earning potential.
  • Certifications related to the field, such as professional engineer (pe) licensure, can further enhance the salary prospects of senior engineers.
  • Geographic location has a significant impact on salary. Engineers working in metropolitan areas or regions with a higher cost of living generally earn more than their counterparts in less densely populated areas.

Opportunities For Career Advancement:

  • Senior mechanical engineers often have the opportunity to take on leadership roles within their organizations, such as becoming engineering managers or project managers. These positions come with increased responsibilities and often higher salaries.
  • Continuing education, attending workshops, and staying updated with the latest advancements in technology can open doors to promotions and higher-paying positions.
  • Seeking out mentorship opportunities or joining professional organizations can provide valuable networking opportunities, enhancing the chances of career advancement.

Top-Paying Industries For Senior Engineers:

  • The aerospace and defense industry is known for offering lucrative salaries to senior mechanical engineers due to the complex nature of the projects involved.
  • The automotive industry also provides excellent opportunities for senior engineers, particularly in research and development roles.
  • Energy and renewable energy sectors, including oil and gas, power generation, and sustainable technologies, seek experienced mechanical engineers and offer competitive salaries.
  • Medical device manufacturing and biomedical engineering present thriving fields for senior engineers, where the demand for expertise and innovation is high.
  • Consulting and engineering services companies frequently hire senior mechanical engineers, providing varied project assignments and potential for higher compensation.

Senior mechanical engineers have ample opportunities to advance their careers and earn higher salaries through their expertise, experience, and continuous professional development. By leveraging these opportunities and excelling in their field, senior engineers can climb the salary ladder and enjoy a rewarding and prosperous career.

Mechanical Engineer Salaries By Industry

Overview Of Industries Hiring Mechanical Engineers

  • Manufacturing: The manufacturing industry is one of the leading employers of mechanical engineers. They work in various areas such as automotive, aerospace, electronics, and machinery manufacturing.
  • Energy: Mechanical engineers are highly sought after in the energy sector, including renewable energy sources like wind, solar, and hydroelectric power. They contribute to the design, installation, and maintenance of energy systems.
  • Construction: Mechanical engineers play a vital role in the construction industry, working on projects like building and infrastructure developments. They focus on hvac systems, plumbing, and fire protection systems.
  • Consulting: Mechanical engineers are hired by engineering consulting firms to provide expert advice on technical and design aspects of projects across different industries.
  • Government: Government agencies employ mechanical engineers for various applications such as defense, public infrastructure, transportation, and environmental regulation.
  • Research and development: Many mechanical engineers work in the research and development sector, involved in designing and improving products, technologies, and innovative solutions.

Salary Range By Industry

  • Manufacturing: The average salary for mechanical engineers in the manufacturing industry ranges from $70,000 to $100,000 per year.
  • Energy: Mechanical engineers working in the energy sector can expect a salary range between $80,000 and $120,000 per year, depending on experience and specialization.
  • Construction: Salaries for mechanical engineers in the construction industry vary from $60,000 to $90,000 per year, with potential for higher earnings as they gain more experience.
  • Consulting: Mechanical engineers employed in consulting firms can earn an average salary of $85,000 to $120,000 per year, depending on their level of expertise and the projects they work on.
  • Government: The salary range for mechanical engineers employed by the government typically falls between $70,000 and $110,000 per year, depending on qualifications and responsibilities.
  • Research and development: Mechanical engineers engaged in research and development usually earn a salary ranging from $80,000 to $130,000 per year, depending on their experience and contributions to the field.

Growth And Job Prospects

  • The demand for mechanical engineers is projected to grow by 4% over the next decade, according to the bureau of labor statistics. This growth rate is expected to create new job opportunities in various industries.
  • Industries such as energy, automotive, and manufacturing are expected to provide strong job prospects for mechanical engineers.
  • Mechanical engineers who stay updated with the latest advancements in technology, such as computer-aided design (cad) and 3d printing, will have a competitive edge in the job market.
  • With a focus on sustainability and renewable energy, mechanical engineers specializing in green technologies and energy-efficient systems have excellent growth potential.
  • Job prospects are also favorable for mechanical engineers with expertise in robotics and automation, as industries are increasingly adopting these technologies for improved efficiency and productivity.
  • Overall, mechanical engineering offers promising career opportunities with competitive salaries across various industries. Individuals with a strong foundation in mechanical engineering principles and an ability to adapt to emerging technologies will have a bright future in this field.

Location-Based Salary Analysis: Top Paying Regions

Highest Salary Regions For Mechanical Engineers:

  • Silicon valley: Known for its thriving tech industry, silicon valley offers some of the highest salaries for mechanical engineers. This region is home to numerous prestigious companies in the field.
  • Houston, texas: With its strong presence in the oil and gas industry, houston provides lucrative opportunities for mechanical engineers. The region boasts a high demand for professionals in this field.
  • Seattle, washington: Known for its booming tech industry, seattle offers competitive salaries to mechanical engineers. The presence of major companies in the region contributes to the high earning potential.
  • Boston, massachusetts: Boston is a hub for innovation and technology, making it an attractive location for mechanical engineers. The region’s strong presence in industries like biotechnology and robotics results in high-paying job opportunities.
  • New york city, new york: As one of the world’s financial and business centers, new york city provides excellent earning potential for mechanical engineers. The region is renowned for its diverse industries and expansive job market.

Factors Influencing Salary Variation By Location:

  • Industry demand: The demand for mechanical engineers in specific industries can significantly impact salary variations across different regions. Industries such as technology, oil and gas, and manufacturing often offer higher compensation.
  • Cost of living: The cost of living in a particular region can influence the average salary for mechanical engineers. Higher living expenses may result in higher salaries to ensure a comfortable lifestyle.
  • Level of experience: The level of experience a mechanical engineer possesses can affect their earning potential. More experienced professionals often command higher salaries, regardless of the region.
  • Education and qualifications: Advanced degrees and certifications can contribute to higher salaries for mechanical engineers. Regions with a higher emphasis on education and specialized skills may offer better compensation.

Cost Of Living Considerations:

  • Housing: The cost of housing can significantly impact the overall cost of living in a region. Higher housing prices can result in decreased disposable income, even with higher salaries.
  • Transportation: The cost of transportation, including commuting expenses, can vary by location. Access to public transportation and the cost of fuel and vehicle maintenance can impact the overall cost of living.
  • Taxes: Different regions may have varying tax rates, including state and local taxes. Higher tax rates can reduce the net income available to mechanical engineers.
  • Goods and services: The overall cost of goods and services, including groceries, healthcare, and recreational activities, can vary by location. It is crucial to consider these factors when evaluating salary offers.
  • Lifestyle preferences: When considering salary and cost of living, personal lifestyle preferences should be taken into account. What may be considered a high salary may not necessarily align with an individual’s desired lifestyle.

Remember, when exploring job opportunities as a mechanical engineer, it’s vital to consider location-based salary analysis, factors influencing salary variation, and cost of living considerations. This will help you make informed decisions about potential job offers and ensure you find the right balance between a high salary and favorable living conditions.

Job Outlook And Future Salary Trends In Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical engineering is a constantly evolving field with a promising job outlook and exciting future salary trends. As technology advances and industries continue to rely on mechanical engineers for innovation and problem-solving, the demand for professionals in this field is expected to remain high.

Here, we explore the factors that contribute to the demand for mechanical engineers, emerging technologies impacting salaries, and the predicted salary growth in the field.

Demand For Mechanical Engineers:

  • Rapidly growing industries: The demand for mechanical engineers is driven by the growth of industries such as automotive, aerospace, energy, and manufacturing. These industries require skilled professionals to design, develop, and maintain machinery, systems, and structures.
  • Expansion of green technologies: With the increasing focus on sustainability and renewable energy sources, mechanical engineers play a crucial role in designing eco-friendly solutions. The demand for professionals who can contribute to the development and implementation of green technologies continues to rise.
  • Replacement of retiring engineers: As experienced professionals in the field retire, new opportunities open up for fresh graduates and mid-career professionals. This replacement demand contributes to the overall job prospects for mechanical engineers.

Emerging Technologies Impacting Salaries:

  • Automation and robotics: The integration of automation and robotics in various industries has revolutionized manufacturing processes and opened up new avenues for mechanical engineers. Professionals with expertise in these emerging technologies have an advantage in terms of higher salaries and job opportunities.
  • Additive manufacturing: 3d printing and additive manufacturing are gaining popularity across industries due to their ability to streamline production processes and reduce costs. Mechanical engineers with knowledge of additive manufacturing techniques are in demand and can expect higher salaries.
  • Artificial intelligence (ai) and machine learning: The application of ai and machine learning in mechanical engineering has led to advancements in areas such as predictive maintenance, optimization, and design optimization. Professionals who can leverage these technologies to enhance productivity and efficiency are highly sought after.

Predicted Salary Growth In The Field:

  • Career progression and experience: As mechanical engineers gain experience and expertise in their field, their earning potential tends to increase. With each milestone reached and promotion earned, professionals can expect a growth in salary.
  • Specialized skills and certifications: Acquiring specialized skills and certifications in areas such as cad/cam software, finite element analysis (fea), and project management can significantly impact salary growth. These additional skills demonstrate expertise and set individuals apart from their peers.
  • Advanced education: Pursuing advanced degrees, such as a master’s or ph.d., can lead to higher-paying job opportunities and increased earning potential. Graduates with advanced degrees often have the advantage of specialization and a deeper understanding of complex engineering concepts.

The job outlook for mechanical engineers remains promising, with demand driven by rapidly growing industries, green technologies, and the need to replace retiring professionals. Emerging technologies like automation, additive manufacturing, and ai are also influencing salaries and job prospects. As professionals gain experience, acquire specialized skills, and pursue advanced education, they can expect to see salary growth in the field of mechanical engineering.

Job Satisfaction And Benefits For Mechanical Engineers

Perks And Benefits Of Being A Mechanical Engineer

Mechanical engineering is a rewarding field that offers a host of perks and benefits to professionals. From competitive salaries to job stability, there are many reasons why mechanical engineers find job satisfaction in their careers. Here are some of the top perks and benefits of being a mechanical engineer:

  • Lucrative salaries: Mechanical engineers enjoy attractive salaries that are above the national average. With their specialized skills and knowledge, they can command high salary packages right from the start of their careers.
  • Job stability: The demand for mechanical engineers remains strong, ensuring job stability in the industry. As technology advances and new industries emerge, the need for mechanical engineers persists, providing a sense of security and peace of mind.
  • Diverse opportunities: Mechanical engineers have the flexibility to work in various industries, including automotive, aerospace, energy, manufacturing, and more. This diverse range of opportunities allows them to explore different fields and find the niche that aligns with their interests.
  • Creativity and innovation: Mechanical engineering offers ample opportunities for creativity and innovation. Engineers constantly face challenges that require them to develop practical and efficient solutions. This fosters a stimulating work environment that encourages out-of-the-box thinking.

Work-Life Balance And Flexibility

While the field of mechanical engineering demands hard work and dedication, it also offers a balanced work-life dynamic and flexibility. Here’s what you can expect in terms of work-life balance as a mechanical engineer:

  • Flexible working hours: Many companies offer flexible working hours to their mechanical engineers, allowing them to have greater control over their schedules. This flexibility enables professionals to adapt their work hours to suit their personal needs and achieve a healthier work-life balance.
  • Remote work opportunities: In recent years, the trend of remote work has become increasingly popular. Mechanical engineers can take advantage of this growing trend and enjoy the freedom to work remotely. This eliminates the need for daily commutes and provides more time for personal pursuits.
  • Continuous learning and professional development: Mechanical engineers have access to various professional development opportunities. Companies often invest in their employees’ growth through training programs, workshops, and conferences. This continuous learning ensures that engineers stay up to date with the latest advancements in the field.

Job Satisfaction Levels In The Industry

The field of mechanical engineering offers high levels of job satisfaction due to several factors. Let’s explore what contributes to the job satisfaction levels in the industry:

  • Real-world impact: Mechanical engineers have the privilege of working on projects that have a tangible impact on society. Whether it’s designing cleaner energy systems or developing innovative medical devices, their work directly contributes to the betterment of the world.
  • Problem solving: Mechanical engineers are natural problem solvers who thrive on overcoming challenges. Their work involves identifying and resolving complex technical issues, which provides a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction.
  • Collaborative environment: Mechanical engineers often work in teams, collaborating with professionals from various backgrounds. This teamwork fosters a supportive and sociable working environment, allowing for fruitful exchanges of ideas and enhancing job satisfaction.
  • Career advancement opportunities: The field of mechanical engineering offers ample opportunities for career growth. By taking on new responsibilities, pursuing higher education, or specializing in a specific area, mechanical engineers can continually progress in their careers and achieve personal and professional goals.

Mechanical engineering offers a range of perks, including competitive salaries, job stability, diverse opportunities, work-life balance, flexibility, and high levels of job satisfaction. These aspects make it an ideal career choice for those who are enthusiastic about problem-solving, innovation, and making a meaningful impact on the world.

Career Advancement Opportunities In Mechanical Engineering

Are you a mechanical engineer aiming to climb the ladder of success? The field of mechanical engineering offers various avenues for career advancement, allowing you to enhance your skills, expand your knowledge, and increase your earning potential. Let’s explore some of these opportunities:

Continuing Education And Advanced Certifications

Continuous learning is a key element for career growth in mechanical engineering. By pursuing further education and obtaining advanced certifications, you can stay up-to-date with the latest industry trends and technologies. Here are some options to consider:

  • Master’s degree in mechanical engineering: Pursuing a master’s degree can provide you with in-depth knowledge and advanced skills, making you a subject matter expert in your field.
  • Ph.d. In mechanical engineering: If you aspire to conduct research or teach at the university level, obtaining a ph.d. can open doors to higher-level positions and greater influence in the industry.
  • Professional certifications: Several organizations offer specialized certifications in areas such as project management, software proficiency (e.g., autocad, solidworks), and industrial automation. These certifications can demonstrate your expertise and make you more competitive in the job market.

Opportunities For Leadership And Management Roles

As you gain experience and expertise in mechanical engineering, you may find yourself drawn towards leadership and management positions. These roles allow you to utilize your technical knowledge while also exercising your leadership skills. Here are some potential opportunities:

  • Team lead: Taking charge of a team can provide you with valuable experience in managing projects, delegating tasks, and coordinating with other departments.
  • Engineering manager: As an engineering manager, you will oversee a team of engineers and play a key role in decision-making, resource allocation, and strategic planning.
  • Project manager: With your technical expertise, you can transition into a project management role, where you will be responsible for overseeing project execution, budgeting, and ensuring timely completion.

Salary Growth With Career Progression

Advancing your career in mechanical engineering is not only rewarding in terms of personal growth but also financially. As you take on more responsibility and move up in your career, your salary is likely to grow. Here’s how career progression can impact your income:

  • Entry-level engineer: Starting your career as an entry-level engineer, you can expect a decent salary. With experience and skill development, your earnings will gradually increase.
  • Senior engineer: As you gain expertise and move into senior-level positions, your salary will see a significant boost. Employers recognize the value of experience, and your compensation will reflect that.
  • Leadership and management roles: Taking on leadership or management positions often comes with a higher salary package. Your technical knowledge combined with your managerial skills will contribute to a higher income.

Pursuing continuing education, obtaining advanced certifications, exploring leadership and management roles, and progressing in your career can offer various opportunities for growth and increased earnings in the field of mechanical engineering. Embrace these pathways to shape a successful and rewarding career in this dynamic industry.

Frequently Asked Questions For Average Mechanical Engineer Salary

What Is The Average Salary Of A Mechanical Engineer?

The average salary of a mechanical engineer is around $87,370 per year.

How Much Does A Mechanical Engineer Earn Per Hour?

On average, a mechanical engineer earns about $41. 99 per hour.

What Factors Can Impact A Mechanical Engineer’S Salary?

Factors such as experience, education level, industry, and location can all impact a mechanical engineer’s salary.

What Industries Pay The Highest Salaries To Mechanical Engineers?

Industries such as aerospace, petroleum, and architectural engineering tend to pay the highest salaries to mechanical engineers.

Does Location Affect The Salary Of A Mechanical Engineer?

Yes, location can greatly affect a mechanical engineer’s salary as different areas have varying costs of living and demand for engineers.

What Are Some Career Advancement Opportunities For Mechanical Engineers?

Mechanical engineers can advance their careers by specializing in a particular field, pursuing higher education, or taking on leadership roles within their organizations.

Are There Any Additional Benefits That Mechanical Engineers Receive?

In addition to a competitive salary, mechanical engineers often receive benefits such as health insurance, retirement plans, and paid time off.


To sum up, the average mechanical engineer salary can vary based on factors such as the level of experience, education, and the industry they work in. However, on average, mechanical engineers can expect a competitive salary that reflects their skills and expertise.

It is important to consider that mechanical engineering is a highly sought-after field, and as the demand for skilled professionals continues to grow, so does the potential for higher salaries. So, if you are considering a career in mechanical engineering, it is crucial to stay updated with the latest trends and technologies in the industry to enhance your earning potential.

Remember, investing in your education and gaining experience through internships, co-op programs, or entry-level positions can help you pave the way for a successful and rewarding career in mechanical engineering. So, start exploring the possibilities and fuel your passion for innovation and problem-solving in this exciting field.


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