Will You Have Robots on Your Construction Site?
In the next few years we can expect to see more robots entering the construction industry. While they won't be working autonomously, you'll find them on construction sites completing a variety of tasks - mostly those that pose more injuries to human workers.
In addition to completing the more hazardous jobs, robots will be used for their precision. Current industry robots can lay approximately 1000 bricks an hour which is at a rate faster than a human can complete a similar task.
The robot capability of brick laying has already been tested and proven successful. Chinese studio Archi-Union Architects programmed robots to construct the undulating brick facade of this art gallery shown above.
Despite having a successful brick-laying robot, the construction site will not become entirely run by robots. Due to the nature of the the construction industry it has actually proven difficult to transition to automation since every site and every project is different. Until artificial intelligence can learn how to completely draft a building from scratch and trasmit the data to other bots, humans will always be needed at the construction site.
Even though the machines are limited to completing only specific tasks, some construction companies have decided to slowly transition to a more autonomous work site and incorporated drones which help to map out the site and control the site itself. They have also used wearable technology that can identify potential hazards on the jobsite and provide a visual representation of the project that would illustrate real-time plans so that workers could get an idea of next phase planning.
While robots on the site can be daunting, they will only enhance the speed of the project and not take away the jobs of the construction workers. Instead, it will force workers to adapt to working alongside a robot to ensure that the work is getting completed in an effective manner. Essentially they will take away the physical intensity out of tasks as the construction worker will become the operator of the robotic construction machine.