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How a Hydraulic Hammer Works

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A hydraulic hammer is a powerful tool used in demolition and construction. It works on the principles of hydraulics as discovered and put into use by Blaise Pascal. It says that putting pressure on one part of a fluid transfers that pressure to all areas of the fluid, allowing for a multiplication of force.


Hydraulic hammers use the principles of hydraulics to multiply the work that a small tool can do. Just as a 10-inch hydraulic jack can lift a two-ton car, a hydraulic hammer can exert thousands of pounds of pressure from a small canister of pressurized hydraulic oil.


Since liquids cannot be compressed, the force when the hydraulic oil is put under pressure is instant and powerful. A piston moves up and down to create the pressure inside a canister where the oil is stored.


Hydraulic hammers are much more powerful than their hand-held jackhammer cousins, and are appropriate for jobs where the force won't cause damage to surrounding buildings or work places. They can be used as pile drivers, diggers, demolition tools, and quarry tools. The force of the hammer is varied by factors such as the size of the hammer and the force of the piston strokes.


Rachel Murdock published her first article in "The Asheville Citizen Times" in 1982. Her work has been published in the "American Fork Citizen" and "Cincinnati Enquirer" as well as on corporate websites and in other online publications. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in journalism at Brigham Young University and a Master of Arts in mass communication at Miami University of Ohio.