Even the most minute of traces become clearly visible when subject to a 100,000 + magnification. That is what the laboratory staff of Hitachi Power Europe use in the form of a scanning electron microscope to analyze fractured surfaces on materials. And this is only one of a number of tasks. The experts in materials technology and analysis examine and assess, for example, fossil fuels, determine the calorific value and grindability of various coal types and look for trace elements in combustion residues (for instance, in slag and ash). Their aim is to improve combustion and, at the same time, reduce environmental pollution. This is achieved, for instance, by optimizing the design of coal mills and burners for the different kinds of fuels.