1 – The routes to robotic-enabled construction are no longer quite so hard to navigate.
The potential benefits of robotics for the construction industry are well known: productivity gains, less arduous work, safety, worker empowerment and new techniques (predictive maintenance, cobotics, surveillance, 3D printing), but it also involves digitalising activities, which can then be managed through software (Hiboo, a newcomer to Leonard, knows a thing or two about this). But let’s move on and spare their blushes! In what conditions can this long-awaited adoption of robotics happen? In recent months, the economics and specialist press has been asking the question.
2 – Automated construction: have we reached a tipping point?
We should be wary of mythologising worksite automation, as Chloé Clair, CTO of VINCI Construction told Leonard. However, with the help of 3D printing and materials engineering, the idea of an automated worksite is making headway – and getting noticed. Recently, the hype surrounding an amazing achievement in Switzerland (see our interview) spread far beyond the small world of tech enthusiasts.
– Built by robots: This Swiss company could change the construction industry forever – World Economic Forum
– 7 of the Most Beautiful 3D Printed Houses and Cabins – Interesting Engineering
– Can robots solve the affordable housing crisis? – Politico
– Autonomous excavation robot in development – Robotics Business Review
– Construction drones – Construction Dive
3 – Robogamis, xenobots and companionship robots: the other robot stars of 2020.
Robotics is inherently fascinating to inventors, investors, big business innovation units and the public at large. Not a day passes without a major CES-type announcement or a research lab’s forum turning up in our newsletters or Twitter feeds. Across all sectors, Leonard has picked over the whole of January’s news to create a (not as wacky as it looks) snapshot of our (universal?) fascination with this strange Czech word from the 1920s and the imagery surrounding it.
– Meet the xenobots: Tiny living robots have been created using cells taken from frog embryos – MIT Technology Review
– 10 innovative robotics solutions for retail spotted at NRF 2020 – L’Usine Digitale
– Robo-taxis are on the way (soon) – USA Today
– Going walkies with Japan’s robot dog companions – Buzzfeed News
– A two-legged delivery robot has gone on sale—and Ford is the first customer – MIT Technology Review