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December 2004

Advance Expands Popular e-Vision® Family of Electronic HID Ballasts - Advance Transformer announces the expansion of its popular line of e-Vision® electronic ballasts for 20-200 Watt metal halide and high pressure sodium lamps to include new 70 Watt and 100 Watt models that have been size-reduced for increased efficiency and design flexibility.

Offering improved efficiency and lower ballast losses, Advance’s new 70 Watt and 100 Watt e-Vision ballasts are a full 26% smaller than their predecessors, making Advance’s 100 Watt model the smallest in the industry. Energy-efficient and long-lasting, e-Vision is ideal in a variety of retail downlighting and accent lighting applications as well as a host of institutional, office, and outdoor settings. Press release

Electric West Announces New Pavilions, Conference Courses at the 2005 Expo –In addition to the exhibitors and quality courses provided at the yearly expo show, Electric West is adding new pavilions and courses in several fast-growing areas for electrical professionals. The venues include Home Automation, Power Quality, and Renewable Energy. The annual show will be held February 8-10, 2005 at the Anaheim Convention Center • Anaheim, CA. For details visit


Pass & Seymour/Legrand Introduces Heavy Duty Receptacles For MRI Applications - Pass & Seymour/Legrand (P&S), a leading manufacturer of electrical and network wiring devices, has announced the introduction of its new Extra Heavy-Duty Receptacles, the only receptacle designed exclusively for MRI applications and the latest addition to the P&S family of Hospital Grade Devices. The exclusive Extra Heavy-Duty Receptacles are made expressly for MRI applications as well as for other health care, education and institutional uses.

P&S made the exclusive receptacles using the same basic design as the standard Extra Heavy-Duty Receptacles, but without the use of ferrous metal, which allows them to be used for high-magnetic-field environments, such as magnetic-resonance imaging (MRI) suites.


California Apprenticeship Council Extends Certification Deadline - The California Apprenticeship Council (CAC ) passed a motion to extend the test deadline for the three current exams of general electrician, residential electrician, and fire/life safety technician for six months -- until Jul. 1, 2005. AB 1087 (Calderon) was signed into law May 29, 2002. This bill requires electricians, as specified, to obtain certification by January 1, 2005. Division of Apprenticeship Standards (DAS ) expects to proceed with rulemaking in the near future. Electricians who are not certified by the new deadline cannot continue working in the state of California. For complete text of this bill, please go to


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November 2004

Burndy Offers 2005 Electrical Master Catalog – FCI-Burndy has announced the posting of their new FCI, Burndy Electrical Master Catalog - edition 2005 on their website. The 688 page PDF catalog file is located in the Library section of the website under the Product Literature link. The easy to use selection guide comes complete with a Master Index, Table of contents and illustrated product listings. To locate this valuable tool online, follow the New Brochures and Catalogs link to the said page, scroll down the alpha/numeric listings or search for the11/2004 entry.


NECA Standards Included in 2005 National Electrical Code - NECA’s National Electrical Installation Standards (NEIS) ® are mentioned five places in the new 2005 NEC. References include; 110.12 (General Rules), 760.8 (Fire Alarms), 770.24 (Fiber Optics), 800.24 (Telephone-Datacom), and 830.24 (Broadband Systems).

NEIS were first published in 1998, and the current 2005 edition of the NEC is the first to include references to NECA’s standards. NECA plans to greatly expand the number of NEIS references in the next edition of the National Electrical Code, scheduled for 2008.


UL and NFPA Offer Precautions For Decorating - Underwriters Laboratories and National Fire Protection Association are offering tips on their website to avoid the hazards of outdoor holiday decorating. The safety experts warn that without the proper safety precautions the dangers of decorating can take the fun out of the season.  All essential tips are listed under the headings of Ladders and Lighting. Click on 


California Voters Approve Protection of Local Government Revenues – With the passage of Proposition 1A, local property tax and sales tax revenues will remain with local government thereby safeguarding funding for public safety, health, libraries, parks, and other local services. Provisions can only be suspended if the Governor declares a fiscal necessity and two-thirds of the Legislature concurs. California voters also passed most transportation tax measures by large margins, including six tax extensions and four new sales taxes in nine counties, worth a total of $33 billion.


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October 2004

California Ranked Second In Capital Expenditures – California ranked second among states in estimated fiscal 2004 total capital expenditures, according to an October report from the National Association of State Budget Officers. (NASBO) Capital expenditures are made for new construction, major repairs and improvements, land purchases and acquisition of major equipment and existing structures. The combined states total capital expenditures were an estimated $71.6 billion. Florida was ranked first with $9.7 billion, followed by California at $5.3 billion and New York with $4.5 billion.

In an earlier April 2004 Fiscal Survey of States report, NASBO stated that the states’ cyclical problems appear to have peaked and through fiscal 2004 continue to improve somewhat, a sharp contrast to the previous three years.

IMARK Recognizes Suppliers for Distinguished Performance - IMARK Group announced the winners of the 2004 IMARK Awards for Distinguished Performance on Monday, October 18th in Phoenix, Arizona. The awards were based on supplier performance from July 1, 2003 through June 30, 2004. Awards were presented to suppliers in three levels (RED, WHITE, and BLUE) based on their business volume through IMARK.  Awards were presented to the following suppliers:

Supplier of the Year: Encore Wire, Arlington Industries and ILSCO

Excellence in Sales and Marketing:IDEAL Industries, Arlington Industries and ILSCO

Excellence in Product Development: Pass & Seymour/Legrand, Arlington Industries and Edwards Signaling & Security System

Excellence in Service and Delivery:Encore Wire, Burndy FCI and Westinghouse Lighting

Conversion Award: Lithonia, Minerallac/Cully and Picoma

Technology Award: Osram Sylvania, Panduit and Milwaukee Electric Tool


2004 NECA Show Held in Los AngelesNECA reports that Electrical Safety was the hot topic at the recent NECA Show, held October 16-19 in Los Angeles, California. Electrical safety was everywhere and Safety equipment, along with educational sessions on safer work practices for electrical construction and maintenance operations, were prominently featured at the Show. The what’s new article noted that:

• A number of vendors exhibited fire-resistant clothing, insulated gloves and boots, face shields, switching suits, voltage-rated tools, and other Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

• The National Fire Protection Association’s booth promoted NFPA 70-2004 Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace.

• Technical presentations explaining arc flash/arc blast hazard, fault current calculation methods, and proper use of PPE were given on the Show floor.

NFPA electrical staffer Kenneth Mastrullo attended the annual breakfast of NECA’s Codes & Standards Committee, to discuss technical and enforcement issues related to OSHA safety rules and NFPA 70E. Mastrullo is author of the upcoming NFPA 70E Handbook, due out later this year.


Square D Arc Fault Circuit Breaker Product Recall – Square D is working in conjunction with the Consumer Products Safety Commission on a voluntary recall of the Square D arc fault interrupter (AFI) circuit breakers manufactured between March 1, 2004 and September 23, 2004.

Square D’s own testing indicates that the arc detection capability may become inoperable in these breakers due to the failure of an internal component in the electronic detection circuit. They discovered that the circuit breaker will not properly detect or interrupt a high resistance low current arcing fault. They report that the short circuit and overload interruption capability of these breakers continues to function properly. This means that the circuit breakers will continue to provide the same level of protection offered by a standard circuit breaker, but will not provide the additional arcing fault protection required by local building codes in many municipalities.

Square D’s message; you have associated the Square D brand with industry leadership, safety, quality, reliability and innovation for over 100 years now. You can be assured we will act quickly and appropriately to ensure you receive the quality products and services you have come to expect from us. Call our AFI Breakers Recall Center toll-free 1-877-202-9046 with question or for more information.


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September 2004

Wiremold to Shut Down Walker Facility - WTAP News, West Virginia, announced that the Walker Systems facility in Wood County will be shutting down early next year -- affecting more than 300 employees. The Wiremold Company, which operates the plant, announced the decision to phase out the operation in order to consolidate its operations to reduce costs. The Williamstown facility, which manufactures wire and cable management and distribution systems, employs about 235 hourly and 75 salaried workers. Company officials say no employee reductions will take place for at least 60 days, with final layoffs expected to occur next March.
Wiremold is part of France-based Legrand S-A -- which bills itself as the world's leading producer of electrical wiring devices and accessories. The company has operations in nearly 60 countries and has approximately 26-thousand employees worldwide.


Ohio Case May End Tax Incentives and Impact Construction Projects - Reversing the decision of a federal district court judge, a three-judge appeals court panel in Cincinnati ruled Sept. 2 that Ohio and the city of Toledo violated the U.S. Constitution’s Commerce Clause and its provisions against discriminatory taxes on interstate commerce by granting a break in 1998 on some corporate income taxes to DaimlerChrysler AG. In exchange, the automaker expanded its existing Toledo Jeep production plant by building a new $1.2-billion vehicle assembly plant nearby. The ruling may signal an end to the days of unlimited giveaways and force states, counties and cities to reevaluate the rich trove of inducements needed to attract manufacturers and their construction projects.

Economic development officials suggest that one possible outcome is a re-evaluation of what works and does not work in attracting employers. DaimlerChrysler and the state of Ohio say they will request a review by the entire Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.


Advance Introduces New Ignitor Assemblies for Magnetic HID - Advance Transformer announces the availability of a range of innovative new Square Plug-In ignitor assemblies for use by the HID fixture manufacturing community to help simplify the lighting maintenance process.

Designed to make it easier to maintain, assemble, test, and replace ignitors in magnetic HID fixtures, the Square Plug-In ignitor assemblies are electrically identical to Advance’s standard ignitors for Metal Halide (MH) and High Pressure Sodium (HPS) ballasts, but are housed in a special mechanical enclosure with 3 tab terminals. Advance’s Square Plug-In ignitor assembly (including ignitor and mating receptacle) serves as a direct replacement or enhanced alternative to the standard product for greater simplicity and ease of use.

The following three Square Plug-In ignitor assemblies are currently available:

· For 35-150 Watt (55V) HPS lamps (catalog number LI551-SQR)

· For 150-400 Watt (100V) HPS lamps (catalog number LI501-SQR]

· For 50-400 Watt (85 to 135V) MH lamps (catalog number LI533-SQR)


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August 2004

Erico Releases Technical Report of the Service Life of Ground Rod Electrodes – ERICO has released a technical report of the service life of a ground rod. This report is intended to provide the electrical industry with technical information that will facilitate the proper application of ground rod electrodes. In addition to its electrical design and function, the grounding system must also be qualified based on the corrosion resistance of its component parts. Electrical elements buried underground are subject to much harsher conditions than their counterparts that reside above-grade or inside a structure. The ability of an electrical grounding component to resist corrosion determines its service life. Corrosion itself is a complicated phenomenon that has an entire engineering community dedicated to its study and prevention.

Supporting Document: Ground Rod Electrode Report


NECA to Establish Industry Standards - The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) plans to draw on the results of this Foundation research project to help develop a National Electrical Installation Standard (NEIS) on mobile equipment grounding safety practices. NEIS are a highly regarded family of ANSI-approved construction standards.
“While there are existing standards on high-voltage grounding, they don’t recommend specific PG practices,” commented Brooke Stauffer, executive director for standards and safety at NECA. “Plus, nobody has focused yet on the special challenges posed when you operate heavy equipment like cranes, bulldozers, digger derricks, and bucket trucks around transmission and distribution lines energized at several hundred thousand volts. Our goal is to create NEIS safety standards that will be simple, practical, and easy to implement in the field.”


Milwaukee Electric to Be SoldTechtronic Industries Co. Ltd. announced that it entered into a stock purchase agreement to acquire Atlas Copco AB's electric power tool and accessories business, currently conducted through Milwaukee Electric Tool Corporation and Atlas Copco Electric Tools. The net cash consideration for the purchase is US $626.6 million on a debt-free basis. The parent company that owns Milwaukee Electric Tool Corp. had announced that the Brookfield, Wis.-based unit would be sold. Atlas Copco Group plans to sell Milwaukee Electric, along with its interest in AEG Electric Tools, a German tool manufacturer. Milwaukee Electric manufactures heavy-duty power tools used primarily by those in the building trades. Milwaukee has been in operation for 80 years. Atlas Copco bought the company in 1995.


Construction starts advance 1% in June - McGraw-Hill Construction recently released a report stating that new construction starts increased 1% in June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $565.1 billion. During the first six months of 2004, total construction was reported at $286.2 billion on an unadjusted basis, which is a 10% increase compared to the same period one year ago.

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July 2004

Edwards Offers Industrial Fire Signals Selection Guide - Edwards Signaling & Security Systems has announced the availability of an 8-page color brochure describing a complete line of industrial fire signals. The selection guide illustrates Edwards full range of fire alarm strobes and horn/strobes, diode polarized AdaptaHorns, visual fire alarm signals, fire alarm bells and electronic signals, explosion-proof heat and smoke detectors, explosion-proof pull stations and a wide variety of auxiliary fire alarm devices and accessories. The fire alarm multiple tone electronic signals provides up to 27 tones; the widest selection of tones in the industry.

For a free copy of the Industrial Fire Signals brochure, please e-mail:


NECA Releases Standard for Installing Aluminum Conduit - The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA ) recently released the National Electrical Installation Standards (NEIS) series 102-2004, Standard for Installing Aluminum Rigid Metal Conduit (RMC). NECA 102 describes installation procedures for aluminum RMC, grounding considerations, and special procedures used with PVC-coated aluminum conduits. The standard was developed with Indalex Aluminum Solutions, a manufacturer of aluminum RMC.

NEIS are the first performance standards for electrical construction, and are approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI). ANSI-approved technical documents have the status of "official" U.S. standards on any given subject.


MGE UPS announces new monitoring service - MGE UPS Systems recently released its PowerSentinel service that gives users access to a real-time view of their UPS systems’ power status via a secure Web site. It’s available to any customer who has a service contract with the manufacturer.

The service includes round-the-clock monitoring by MGE’s customer care center staff and gives the user immediate notification of specified event alarms. It continuously tracks remote diagnostic capabilities, system input and output data, connection information, system configuration, event logs, and alerts.

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June 2004

Cresent/Stonco launches FloodPak Web-site - Cresent/Stonco, a division of Genlyte, recently launched a new Web site for its FloodPak outdoor lighting fixture. At, visitors can view photos and lighting applications, as well as download photo-metrics, installation instructions, mounting templates, and specification sheets.

The site also features various lighting scenarios. Photos include information about compliance requirements, installation requirements, and accessories. The FloodPak can be rotated at different angles to distribute light six different ways like flood, indirect/accent, and forward throw, façade and indirect lighting, and surface mount.


Watt Stopper Promotes Green Designs - The Watt Stopper, a Legrand Group Company, recently started the GreenSense program, which offers resources for professionals who want to enhance green design practices through the use of lighting controls. The program includes a Web site,, and an educational series with sessions throughout the United States and Canada on topics like energy codes, the LEED program, and daylighting controls. Some of the sessions qualify for AIA/CES learning units and LCQLP lighting educational units.

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May 2004

2005 National Electrical Code Adopted - The 50th edition of the National Electrical Code (NFPA 70) was approved May 26 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Twenty-three members of the NECA Codes and Standards Committee attended the climactic meeting. The publication will be the 50th edition of this national safety standard that was first published in 1897 to deal with the growing problem of electrical fires. Since 1959 it has been revised every three years.

The 2005 National Electrical Code will be published by September 2004, for use at fall regional meetings of the International Association of Electrical Inspectors (IAEI). States and municipalities will begin adopting the NEC for regulatory use in January 2005.


Leviton Allies With ACT - Leviton Manufacturing Company has entered into a joint marketing agreement/strategic alliance with A.C.T. Lighting Inc., an the North American distributor for Agoura Hills, California lighting distributor and the North American distributor of MA Lighting consoles, to offer grandMA lighting consoles as part of its their extensive lighting control systems offerings. The family of grandMA lighting consoles is manufactured by German manufacturer MA Lighting Technology (Dachdeckerster, Germany) Technology GmbH.


NECA Line Chapter Signs OSHA Alliance - NECA’s Southeastern Line Constructors Chapter and its associated IBEW chapter have formed an alliance with the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to improve safety in line construction. Both apprentice and experienced electrical workers will attend training sessions to improve their ability to recognize and maintain a safe working distance from power sources, use proper grounding techniques, and wear proper protective equipment.

NECA’s national office signed a national alliance agreement in August 2003 with OSHA headquarters. NECA’s Central Ohio and Northern New Jersey chapters have also entered into local OSHA alliances, and other NECA chapters are in the process of doing so.


April 2004

Schneider Electric/Square D PowerLogic Updated – The updated V3.3.2.3 version of the Schneider Electric/Square D PowerLogic system manager software now features power quality index readings that tell users the status of the quality of their power, system-wide or on a single piece of equipment, based on historical data. The software reports alarm summary readings, alarm trend readings, interval energy readings, and monthly and yearly summaries of overall power quality for multiple meters.

Alliance Seeks To Stem Crisis of Metal Commodities Price Hikes - In a recent letter to Congress, the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) and partners in the Mechanical-Electrical-Sheet Metal Alliance are demanding emergency government action in response to the hard-hitting, steep increases in the cost of products made from steel, copper, and aluminum and a decrease in the availability of critical commodities.

Additionally, the Small Business Legislative Council (SBLC), in which NECA is an active participant, is calling for the U.S. to demand action from the World Trade Organization in order to halt governments from subsidizing industries and restricting market access.

Watt Stopper Offers Bi-level Switching of Outdoor HID Fixtures - April 2004 - Santa Clara, CA – The Watt Stopper’s EW Low Voltage Outdoor Motion Sensor uses passive infrared technology to detect occupancy. During times of vacancy, the sensor signals the DM-105-WP Outdoor Bi-level HID Controller to switch lights to a lower, energy saving level. When occupants return, lights immediately return to high. The DM’s bi-level switching capability eliminates the long restrike time (up to ten minutes) associated with ON/OFF control of HID lighting. Rated for outdoor use, both products can handle wet and damp locations and fluctuating temperatures and weather conditions.

The Watt Stopper, Inc., a Legrand Group Company, manufactures a complete line of automatic lighting, HVAC, and office power control products including Passive Infrared, Ultrasonic and the patented Dual Technology occupancy sensors and Isolé energy controls.


March 2004

NEW Announces New Team Member - NEW has announced the addition of Reid “Mac” McCleary to their Sales and Marketing team. McCleary, a Business Development Specialist, will expand the engineering and consultative services already offered to NEW customers with his professional experience as a Control Systems Designer, Field Sales Engineer and Drives Application Specialist.

With over 20 years in the electrical, HVAC and mechanical markets, McCleary will offer expertise in a wide variety of applications. He and the NEW team look forward to providing NEW customers with an even wider range of solutions and services.


Lightfair International Anticipates Record Numbers - Lightfair International 2004, billed as the world’s largest annual architectural and commercial lighting trade show and conference, expects this show to be the largest to date in the event’s history.  Now in its 15th year, the event will feature a host of new products, programs, exhibitors and related events. More than 600 leading-edge domestic and international companies are expected to exhibit, and attendance for the event is expected to include over 17,500 architectural, engineering, design and end-user professionals from around the world. Lightfair International 2004 will be held in the Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas, Nevada during the following dates:

• Lightfair Daylighting Institute & Keynote: Monday, March 29 - Tuesday, March 30, 2004
• Lightfair Institute & Keynote: Monday, March 29 - Tuesday, March 30, 2004
• Trade Show & Conference: Wednesday, March 31 -Friday, April 2, 2004


The New Product Showcase & Awards Presentation, which takes place on Wednesday, March 31, 2004, will bestow awards for Best New Product of the Year, Technical Innovation, Energy Efficiency, Design Excellence, and 22 Best of Category Awards.

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February 2004

Philips Lighting Offers Insight Into New Regulations - Philips Lighting Company is offering Lighting Crossroads, a series of seminars to help California facilities managers and maintenance personnel understand  the new State of California regulations that makes it mandatory to recycle lamps containing mercury.

Representatives from the State of California Department of Toxic Substance Control, will discuss the new regulations, lamp recyclers Advanced Environmental Recycling and Earth Protection Services, Inc., will discuss resources and services for recycling.  Philips’ own Manager of Environmental Affairs, will explain the reasons that light bulbs contain mercury and new low-mercury lamp technology. Register on line


NECA Announces VDV/IBS Trade Show to Merge with National Convention in 2005 - The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) is proud to announce the second phase of their long-range strategic plan for the Voice Data Video/Integrated Building Systems market. Starting in 2005 the VDV/IBS Conference & Expo will be incorporated into NECA's national convention. The 2005 convention is scheduled for September 17-20 in New Orleans, LA.   

NECA describes this as a win-win for attendees, manufacturers and customers.   Attendees will have an opportunity to preview more manufacturer products under one roof, and manufacturers can focus their energies on one major trade show that has exposure to a wider customer base.


Meanwhile in 2004…


NECA’s March Conference and Expo in Las Vegas Increases its Offering - NECA’s 5th Annual VDV/Integrated Building Systems Conference and Expo has been expanded to include sessions on systems integration, security, sound, audio/visual, fiber optics, copper cabling, home networking, LonWorks, power quality, VDV sales and service, and much more. They have also attracted new exhibitors, and will be presenting conference programs that is, for the first time ever, open to all. Programs begin Monday, March 8 and continue through Friday March 12, 2004

Every year since 2000, NECA and partners have hosted the annual VDV Expo & Conference. However, last March 2003, they introduced the VDV/Integrated Building Systems Conference & Expo reflecting the increasing demand for a one-stop source for power and integrated building systems work.

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January 2004

Schneider Electric acquires MGE UPS Systems  - Schneider Electric has begun a process to fully acquire MGE UPS Systems for an estimated enterprise value of about EUR 850 million (U.S. $1 billion). The transaction should be complete in the first quarter of 2004, pending approval by anti-trust authorities, notably in the U.S. and Europe. Schneider Electric signed two agreements under which it will increase its stake in two stages. The first of which is the acquisition of a 52.6% interest, which corresponds to all of the stake held by legal and general ventures and ABN Amro and about half of the interest held by MGE UPS Systems’ management and employees, for EUR 298 million (U.S. $375 million). The second stage is the acquisition in 2006 of the remaining 15.1% for a price based on MGE UPS Systems’ 2005 EBITA level.

Scientists Create New Form of Matter  - Scientists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s joint lab with the University of Colorado, who led the study, say they have created a new form of matter and predict it could help lead to the next generation of superconductors for use in power distribution, more efficient trains and countless other applications.

The new matter form is called a fermionic condensate, and it is the sixth known form of matter — after gases, solids, liquids, plasma and Bose-Einstein condensate, created only in 1995. The cloud of super-cooled potassium atoms brings researchers one step closer to an everyday, usable superconductor — a material that conducts electricity without losing any of its energy.    


Telecomm Spending Up in 2003 - According to TIA’s 2004 Telecommunications Market Review and Forecast, total spending in the U.S. telecommunications industry rose 4.7 percent in 2003 to an estimated $720.5 billion. Double-digit increases in wireless services, services in support of equipment, specialized services (unified communications, video- and audio-conferencing and high-speed Internet access) offset decreases in equipment spending and local- and toll-service revenues. The forecast includes for telecomm spending to rise 6.8 Percent in 2004 and the U.S. telecommunications industry will grow at a projected 9.2 percent compound annual rate 2004-2007, reaching $1 trillion. The Market Review and Forecast is an annual study published by the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA).

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