We are in the middle of a blog series where we are looking at hot construction technology, digging into projected growth for these technologies, specific examples and case studies for construction, and opportunities for the future. Already having explored 5G, AI (artificial intelligence), digital twins, wearables, AR (augmented reality), VR (virtual reality), MR (mixed reality), and the metaverse, today let’s narrow in on robotics.
Naturally, robots mean different things to different people. They might drum up images of a futuristic world of George Jetson, his robo-maid, and his career of manufacturing sprockets. This robotic world is often glamorized for the movies as something far off in the future, but the reality is the earliest robots as we know them were created in the early 1950s.
Today, robots have infiltrated nearly ever vertical market including construction. They can be used for demolition, bricklaying, masonry, carpentry, welding, 3D printing, and so much more. Even drones are technically a robot that are widely used in construction today. But perhaps one of the most interesting use cases is the equipment itself.
The benefit here is the data can be captured from the construction site using autonomous technologies, saving construction companies both time and money, while also increasing jobsite safety.
The market is anticipated to grow as well. The construction robotics market size is expected to grow 23.3% from 2020 to 2027, according to Allied Market Research. This includes any task that is automated by construction equipment or robots.
By application, in 2019, the surveillance segment dominated the construction robotics market, in terms of revenue and the 3D printing segment is expected to witness the highest growth rate during the forecast period. By sales type, in 2019, the new sales segment dominated the market, in terms of revenue while the aftermarket segment is expected to witness growth at the highest growth rate during the forecast period. By end user, the residential segment led the market in 2019, in terms of revenue and is anticipated to register the highest growth rate during the forecast period, according to Allied Market Research data published in 2021.
Two of the biggest drivers for robots in construction are the need for greater efficiency amid a worker shortage and heightened safety on the jobsite. Mordor Intelligence suggests the drive to reduce the construction time of the projects is aiding the growth of the construction robots. Welding time in Japanese construction sites has declined dramatically since the implementation of robotic welding systems, as one example. As another instance, demolition is one of the most hazardous construction industry tasks, and manual workers are prone to various fatal accidents and damages. Implementing robotics for demolition functions increases the safety and efficiency of the workers.
Perhaps that George Jetson future is already here in some respects. Now we just need to figure out how to replicate his three hours a day, three days a week of work. Can the robots help us do that yet?
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