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|The Hardgrove grindability index (HGI) is a widely used coal-quality parameter with applications in coal mining, beneficiation, and utilization. An understanding of the petrology of the coal is fundamental to understanding the validity of the HGI in the given application. The HGI varies with coal rank, increasing (greater ease of grinding) with increasing rank through the high-volatile bituminous rank range; and the HGI varies with changes in the maceral and microlithotype composition, decreasing with an increase in liptinite and liptinite-rich microlithotypes. In this review, the .fundamental relationship between HGI and coal petrology, and consequently its relationship to coal utilization, is examined.|