Epiroc Celebrates Hydraulic Breaker’s 60th Anniversary

Published: 28/12, 2023

What was once simply an idea in the German city of Essen six decades ago, became a breakthrough product used across the construction and mining industries globally. Originally developed by Krupp Berco Bautechnik, the rig-mounted hydraulic breaker was patented in 1963. The first machine HM 400 was a hit at the Hannover trade show in 1967. From that time onwards, more than 2,000 units were sold.

The breaker was exclusively designed to save time, eventually becoming a cost-effective solution in the construction industry. The demolition and mining operations at that time was all about increasing labor, time, and costs as the pneumatic tools were widely in use. But the hydraulic breaker was a real game-changer as one was enough to replace several pneumatic tools. It was soon known to be a huge time saver that comparatively costed little.

The hydraulic breaker revolutionized the entire construction and mining industry, and today, they become a part of the standard fleet anywhere, be it a small or large-scale project.

In 2002 Krupp Berco Bautechnik was acquired by the Swedish Atlas Copco Group. In 2018, Atlas Copco announced its split from Epiroc. While the former continued focusing on industrial customers, Epiroc took the lead on mining and construction, including hydraulic breakers.

“The breaker was only the start of the development of other attachment tools such as cutters, pulverizers, grapples, shears, magnets, crushers, screeners, and many others,” notes Gordon Hambach, who heads strategic marketing for Epiroc hydraulic attachment tools.

In 2020, Epiroc brought hydraulic breakers into the digital age with Hydraulic Attachment Tools Connectivity (HATCON), an advanced level fleet management system that monitors operating hours, location, and service intervals. The data from HATCON provides a new level of control where utilization is evenly distributed, optimizing transport and increasing uptime with pre-planned service stops has never been easier.

“Epiroc hydraulic breakers are still the market leader in most countries around the globe,” Hambach says. “With hundreds of brands in the industry today, the hydraulic breaker still offers a time-saving and cost-effective solution for demolition, utilities, rock excavation and many more applications.


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