Epiroc says its new COP M series of flexible down-the-hole (DTH) hammers is easily adapted for use on different rigs and in different drilling conditions – and set to boost productivity for mining companies.Mining companies seek to minimise the cost of drilling holes by opting for fewer and larger holes to reduce the total number of drill meters, and increase efficiency and profitability, according to Epiroc.“It’s about ensuring maximum utilisation of the rig and keeping it operational with minimum interruption,” said Davood Mohammadi Balan, Percussive Service Manager at Epiroc.However, traditional DTH hammers involve repeated consumable replacements and a large inventory. Shifting to a new hammer for each rig type or drilling condition is costly to mining companies.The new COP M hammers from Epiroc will dramatically change profitability in DTH drilling thanks to their innovative flexibility, according to the company.“These new hammers are a step towards a change in operational flexibility by being easily adapted to different rig types and drilling conditions,” Balan said.Each hammer in the new range can be used on a wide range of DTH drill rigs thanks to a conversion kit located inside the hammer.Fredrik Gransell, Product Line Manager, DTH, Epiroc, said: “By adapting the hammer to a specific rig, the rate of penetration (ROP) is optimised.”Together, the new products, COP M6, COP M7 and COP M8 – where M stands for mining and the number for the tool’s dimension – optimally cover drilling needs in the 6.5-10 in dimension range.Gransell added: “The new COP M series adds the flexibility of selecting the right tool for any given situation. It’s a revolutionary innovation in DTH drilling.”“At a small investment, mining companies can tap into top-quality technology from the leading provider – and boost profitability to a whole new level,” concluded Balan.Still within the COP M Series, but for smaller diameter holes, Epiroc also used the recent Bauma fair in Munich, Germany, to showcase its new COP M4 DTH hammer for soft-rock applications.The DTH hammer offers mining and construction companies the highest durability for both hammer and bit – with maintained ROP, the company said.As the name implies, the hammer’s dimension is 4 in, making it useful for most soft-rock blast holes.Besides offering a high ROP, the COP M4 is operating gently on the bit, reducing fatigue, which adds further to its favourable total cost of ownership (TCO), Epiroc said. E-kitting is a way to further improve TCO without sacrificing productivity, the company said.“We managed to reach the perfect balance between frequency and impact energy, which means the new hammer breaks the rock optimally – without hitting it too hard,” Gransell said.Other benefits include a smoother and more reliable drilling process, without the hammer getting jammed in the rock, as well as low fuel consumption, Epiroc said.It is also easy to adjust the hammer for use in different ground conditions by replacing one or two components inside the hammer.The COP M4 is made of only eight components, meaning it is easy to assemble and disassemble. In addition, it is shorter and lighter than conventional hammers in the market, which makes it easy to handle for drill operators and their service crews, Epiroc said.To offer best value, Epiroc is also planning to launch a new bit, specially designed for soft-rock DTH drilling.“Launching a complete DTH solution that combines COP M4 and our upcoming soft rock bit, we’re expecting to redefine productivity and reliability in DTH soft rock drilling,” Gransell said.