No industry is being left in the dark in terms of technological innovation. Even the construction industry has technological advancements projected in their futures. Artificial intelligence integrated with the heavy equipment will change the way construction sites operate and construction projects are completed.
More so than just machinery, even some of the materials used in construction are set to evolve and change the construction game.
Autonomous machinery and construction equipment
In the construction industry, it’s about more than simple “driverless” technology. Construction equipment of the near future is being designed to perform their functions without anyone seated in the cab to take over the controls. There are automated haulers, wheel loaders, and dozers being used in mining environments with the intention of introducing them to road and construction site projects as well.
Other autonomous and AI machinery you can already find in the construction industry are robot-swarm builders, bricklaying robots and drones. Robot-swarms, in construction, are a group of small robots that work together in a team to build structures. They are currently used in unfavourable conditions for worker safety and other general applications. Bricklaying robots are self-explanatory and drones are currently used for surveying purposes with the goal to bring in transfer functions into their programming.
Not all equipment will be completely autonomous and may still require human-operation. There will, however, be smart technology integrated into the designs and operations of the equipment to increase production, performance, effectiveness and adaptability abilities.
Through these technological additions and creations, the monitoring and assessing of construction equipment data and statistics will be trackable and adjustable to suit the construction environment and boost performance. Smart technology will be able to gather that data and make those necessary adjustments instantly and, almost, simultaneously to keep construction efforts consistent.
Take a moment and just imagine it. Heavy-duty construction equipment with the ability to handle themselves on site and get the, otherwise, tedious jobs done with absolute agility and ease. All because of technology.
But there are more benefits to smart technologies and autonomous equipment than faster construction, more efficient building and safer working environments. They all contribute towards a greener industry.
• Fuel saving: Through electric and hybrid-fuelled equipment there will be less money spent on gas and diesel. There will also be a decrease in demand for these more harmful fuels.
• Energy efficient: They will also be designed around low energy consumption through lower rolling resistance and equipment that is lighter in weight. Saving energy and fuel is a huge turnaround for the construction industry.
• Clean the air: Researchers at UCLA are in the process of encouraging construction companies to build with Carbon Dioxide. Not only in an attempt to clean the air by upcycling the great excess CO2 in the world, but also simply because CO2 can be developed into a concrete-like material.
From the example of carbon dioxide being turned into “concrete”, we can see that even the industrial materials will be revitalised or created through technology in the future of construction.
Other materials that are set to evolve include:
• Self-healing concrete: Our road surfaces are on their way to change in unbelievable ways. Self-healing concrete will allow roads and pavements to chemically seal cracks from general wear and tear. And road surfaces will be traffic regulators and electricity generators.
• Carbon nanotubes: These microscopic structures are said to be added to steel, wood and glass materials to make them stronger, lighter, longer and taller. Having the highest strength to weight ratio, it doesn’t seem impossible.
• Transparent aluminium: Metal glass? Essentially, that is the idea. Transparent aluminium is polished until glass-like and is being trialled as armoured glass.
What it means
Technology and construction equipment won’t only change the construction industry, it will set a benchmark for all industries that want to lead in automation where worker safety is encouraged, technology is top-class, performance is incomparable and the effect on the environment is more than positive. Construction equipment finance solutions will provide an opportunity for construction companies to use smart construction technology and materials and start the advancement process.
For many workers, it seems their jobs will be replaced by AI construction robots. But the reality and choice for many construction business owners is that by turning to technological advancements there are so many new opportunities available. New job roles will be created and ex-machine operators can get involved with the maintenance, operations technology and behind-the-scenes project design and coordination. Many of the processes will change and it will pay to offer training and preference to your current workers who can change with the industry.
It means industrialisation has an opportunity to occur more rapidly and the “old” equipment can be sent to underprivileged countries that need the resources to build their communities up. Eventually, the technological advancements will reach all across the world in an effort to make the world better and adopt better practices for the earth’s sake.