Brick laying robots to build homes
Robots that can lay six times as many bricks a day as human builders are set to turn the construction industry on its head.
New York-based firm Construction Robotics has developed a robot called SAM (short for Semi-Automated Mason), which can lay 3,000 bricks a day. That’s significantly more than most human builders, who can lay an average of 500 bricks a day. The devices have started replacing humans on a some sites in US.
“We are going over to the UK in the coming months to meet with some companies and see if we can find a home for Sam there,” Scott Peters, the company’s president, told The Times. While SAM has the ability to pick up bricks, apply mortar and lay them, the robot needs to be heavily supervised.
Human workers still need to set up the robot, supervise health and safety and assist with laying bricks at difficult angles, as well as clearing up, according to Construction Robotics. However, some of Britain’s biggest construction firms have warned that the automation of the industry is likely to result in mass layoffs.
Australian company Fastbrick Robotics has also developed a proof of concept for a commercial bricklaying machine called Hadrian X. From the computer aided design of a house structure, the Hadrian X robotic bricklayer will be able to handle the automatic loading, cutting, routing and placement of all bricks to build a complete structure. Delivery of the first commercial prototype of Hadrian X is due later this year.