At the beginning of the 19705 a development took place in North America which in Europe and elsewhere in the world had already begun many years before, i.e. the use of scrapers as reclaiming machines for most types of bulk materials.
PHB Weserhütte AG, West Germany took an important part in the development of the scraper as a reclaiming machine. This company designed, manufactured and set into operation in 1926 the first commercially used scraper, i.e. a slewing type scraper designed for a potash mine in Southern Alsace. In comparison with the machines in operation today with reclaiming capacities of up to 2 500 t/h the first reclaiming scrapers achieved quite modest capacities of around 80-100 t/h.
Although in the years to come similar machines were built the real breakthrough came only in the 1960s. The machines originally developed for the potash industry were then used increasingly in the fertilizer and cement industries. Thus the boom in these two industries went along with that of the reclaiming scraper.