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The construction industry is having a difficult time finding skilled workers. The problem is on a global scale as most countries have to import labor, which is rarely skilled enough to handle the job.
This is why companies have now turned to technology which is slowly replacing humans. A lot of manual jobs are now being completed by machines and robots. This used to be a dream until a few years ago but now thanks to improved technology it has become a reality.
Let’s have a look at how technology is helping the construction industry:
Using Robots for Jobs
The idea behind Built Robotics is to use automation technology make construction safer, faster and cheaper,” said Ready-Campbell, the man behind Built Robotics, a startup producing robots designed for the construction industry.
However, he’s not the only one who’s working on introducing robots in this industry. A New York-based company, Construction Robotics, is also doing quite well in this niche.
The change is slow but it’s happening in the midst of resistance from workers who’re afraid they might lose their jobs due to robots.
However, experts believe that we’ll see a shift in the focus. Robots will do what humans are doing today but humans will still be needed to make sure robots continue to do their work without any trouble.
Plus, implementing robots is not easy due to the huge costs involved. SAM, shortened for Semi-Automated Mason, costs about $400,000, which is a lot for most companies.
The robot can pick and place bricks. It may not be able to handle a lot of work today but the makers believe that soon it will be able to provide more output than a human but without the addition of extra costs.
Using Drones for Mapping
Drones are literally taking the industry to new heights. For most of us, drones are fun robots to play with but for workers in the industry, they’re devices that are even used for mapping.
Many companies use drones to handle large-scale projects. They’re slowly becoming a reliable option for mapping and surveying specific areas.
There are many benefits of using drones in the industry. They’re safe and easy to use. Plus, the results that they provide are also very accurate with little scope for mistakes.
With drones in place, construction work has become a lot safer. Despite their being linear actuators and other such tools to make the environment more secure, nothing beats drones and their advantages.
Construction workers do not have to take the risk of climbing scaffoldings and ladders to get data. They can fly drones and use them to gather and record data.
However, once again, it’s a big investment and workers also need to be trained in how to use drones. This can be a bit challenging for some companies, especially because employees are usually hesitant when it comes to trying new things.
Building Information Modelling (BIM)
This is not a new technology but it’s still on the rise. BIM is eliminating hand-drawn designs as more and more companies are now turning to BIM du to the benefits it has to offer.
BIM provides 3D models of buildings, making it easier for everyone to understand the concept. This reduces the risk and ensures that all parties are on the same page regarding the design.
Plus, it can also help save time and money. The technology is very popular in first world countries but now developing countries like India have also started to use BIM due to its benefits.
Digital Twin Technology
Introduced in 2002, this technology involves “having a real-time digital representation of a physical object.” It originally started in the aerospace industry but has now moved to the construction industry given its benefits.
It’s mainly a link between a real object and its digital representation based on data gathered from sensors installed for this purpose. It’s quite like a hologram but a little more detailed.
The technology helps the industry by giving access to “as-built and as-designed models.” Real-time syncs leave little space for mistakes and errors. The concept is linked to BIM and helps companies meet schedules by comparing progress against the designed model.
With so much changing, many say that the fourth industrial revolution is about to hit the industry. This will make life easier for some but it may put some companies in a real danger, especially if they cannot meet the changing demands.
Climate change, depletion of resource, a growing talent gap, and urbanization are some of the reasons why things are changing at such a rapid pace.
According to a new report, Shaping the Future of Construction: Future Scenarios and Implications, ”Current business models, strategies and capabilities will not be sufficient in any of these future worlds.”
If you’re in the construction industry then it’s time for you to pull your socks and up your game.