Robot bricklayers and exoskeletons are the “future of construction,” according to a new report.
“The global construction space isn’t known for ushering new tech into their workforce, but a painful labour shortage, calls for increased worker safety and more low-cost housing, and the need to catch up to other tech-savvy sectors is giving upstarts in robotics and exoskeletons their big moment,” explained VICE’s Motherboard on Monday. “Even so, there’s concern that automation could put some workers out of a job.”
“The construction industry isn’t immune to this phenomenon, but robots and humans may increasingly work hand-in-hand in industrial sectors, according to Brian Turmail, senior executive director of public affairs at the Associated General Contractors of America,” they continued. “This is especially true when the construction industry en masse uses exoskeleton vests, which aim to assist workers with heavy loads and thus reduce their risk of injury. But some robots may do the majority of back-breaking work for construction workers that repeat the same routine for hours.”
The report goes on to list various different bricklaying robots, including the Hadrian X, which can allegedly lay 1,000 bricks per hour, and another robot system named SAM.
“The efficiency in construction sites has been very stagnant or declined in the last 20, 30 years whereas manufacturing efficiency has increased significantly,” claimed President of Construction Robotics, Scott Peters. “A lot of that is due to robotics and technologies.”
Along with robots, the future may bring humans wearing exoskeletons both for safety and to increase their carrying capacity. According to Motherboard, “The robotic exoskeleton market is poised to grow to $1.9 billion in 2025, compared to $97 million in 2016.”
You can read the full report at Motherboard.