Interview of Hamid Harchaui, the MD of Ingenium in Algeria. Ingenium is Astera distributor for Algeria. Over the last years Algeria has become an important market for Astera.

What are the major benefits the clients are searching with Astera equipment?

The most of the clients are still working manually to prepare the thin sections. This is time consuming work. Also the quality is very much operator related. The main reason to invest expensive machinery is to automate the thin section production, reach constant and high quality.

How large the time saving might be in using Astera machines?

This is difficult to estimate exactly. The expectation is the speed would be about three times better compared the methods used today. The time saving is important. We shall also remember the machines are running alone once the samples are set in the machine. This means the operators can do something else during the machines are working.

What are the other benefits in using Astera machines?

The use of only water is very important. Water is cheap and as there are no slurries used the sample quality is good. The machines are also fulfilling the EC security norms, this is a great benefit for the laboratories and operators. The machines are safe to use.

What can you say about use of the machines?

We shall remember the operators have a huge step to take from manual work to use a fully automatic equipment. The training is needed and nobody shall underestimate the need for training. The operational model with automatic machine is simply very different. After the operators have learned the new working method, the high efficiency is easily reached.