About 20% of construction costs on construction sites have to do with the correction of human errors, the consequence of workers or other managers who have not correctly followed what was foreseen in a project (wrong measures, errors during the transcriptions between the survey and the production notes, systems that take up more space than expected, windows opened on the wrong side, wrong colors, etc.).
A Barcelona-based company, Scaled Robotics, aims to minimize the subsequent renovations by automating the process in the progress of the works by automatically monitoring the activity step by step using specific autonomous mobile robots.
Using Lidar sensors and other technologies used in autonomous driving, Scaled Robotics has created a sort of impersonator of WALL-E (the protagonist of the Pixar animation film co-produced with Disney) able to navigate and create maps of construction sites under construction, merging images , videos and various data.
The company explains to TechCrunch co-founder Stuart Maggs, a man with training experience in construction and architecture, born "from the sense of frustration of not having automatic tools available to verify what we plan in the offices".
"You spend a lot of time in the office, developing the vision of what you wanted and that you think is right, but in the end the responsibility goes to someone in the field who maybe has only a tape measure and a piece of chalk in his hand and who he should do things properly according to how he feels that day. "
The robots in question have been distributed to construction sites in various parts of the world, including that of Dura Vermeer in the Netherlands and Kier in the United Kingdom. Maggs says it was easy to convince the construction industry of the value of the robot, and that it is a response to a real need: the possibility of making a comparison in the field with high resolution digital models, allowing managers to verify the actual progression of the results and identify problems before they turn into too expensive expenses.
"At first, the workers seem perplexed," explains Maggs of the robot, but eventually accept it as any other tool on the construction site. "