In 2017, Built Robotics made headlines as they debuted their self-driving track loader on a test construction site. Earlier this month, the company announced a formal long-term partnership with construction giant Mortenson to deploy their machines on remote sites.
Announced at ENR FutureTech, the deal between Mortenson and Built Robotics is focused on providing earthmoving functions on renewable energy projects, such as wind and solar farms. These types of projects tend to be in secluded area, outside of areas with an established workforce. The jobs tend to have a lot of repetitive work, which can be ideal for autonomous vehicles at this stage in their development.
Mortenson and Built have worked with each other in the past on a Kansas wind farm in 2018. According to an article on ENR, there’s an operator on the site that helps maintain the equipment, like re-fueling, greasing, and transporting.
GPS tracking helps keep the equipment within a programmed geo-fence and Light Detection and Ranging (LIDAR) technology helps avoid collisions and other obstacles.
This summer, Built will begin training equipment operators and mechanics from Mortenson on their equipment. The operators will learn to install kits, run the robots, and troubleshoot and diagnose issues. “High-quality training is critical for ensuring the safe and effective rollout of our technology,” Built said in their announcement.
As Mortenson told ENR, they are not looking at replacing their existing workforce with this equipment, but to help alleviate the continued workforce shortages they continue to face, especially on the remote jobsites.
You can check out video of Built Robotic’s equipment in action in the video below:
A few technology companies have been trying to wedge augmented reality into construction for a few years now, boasting benefits of overlaying BIM models onto the real life site you’re working on, as well as interactive collaboration with remote workers. One of those companies that we thought was going to make a pretty big impact is apparently closing its doors in the near future.
As much as I like my smartphone, it’s undeniable that they can be a huge distraction on the job site or in a vehicle. The construction industry is dangerous enough without these added distractions, so at least one US contractor has decided to proactively manage their employee’s smartphone usage.
With temperatures globally trending warmer each year, that heat can take quite a toll on professions that rely heavily on exterior labor, like the construction industry. There are many products available currently to help keep you cool on the jobsite, but the best may still be yet to come.
Drones have been heavily used by the construction industry in recent years for anything from progress photos, to employee tracking, or calculating the volume of on-site stockpiles. Now, a report from EHS Today says that OSHA plans to employ more drones to conduct site inspections of employer facilities.
As part of Autodesk’s late 2018 construction technology acquisition spree, the software giant gobbled up both PlanGrid and BuildingConnected. The two acquired companies now form a large part of Autodesk’s Construction Solutions branch – and are now integrated with each other for a seamless document transition from the pre-construction phase to the construction phase.
Last year at Groundbreak, Procore’s annual technology conference, the company teased a new platform they have been working on for BIM users. At that point referred to as “Design Coordination,” it now has a formal name – and an upcoming release date.
One of the key components of BIM is the ability to detect clashes, which are design coordination issues that result in the inability to construct a building as drawn. The use of 3-dimensional drawings allows contractors –and software- to detect if key building components are intersecting before it’s about to be installed in the field. Autodesk BIM 360 has recently updated its clash detection abilities within its Model Coordination module more easily and efficiently within its platform.
Hot off of the acquisition of Honest Buildings, a project management software aimed at owners and developers, Procore has announced they have acquired yet another tech company to help bolster their offerings.
Construction Management software company, Procore, initially launched their annual technology conference, Groundbreak, back in 2015. Originally hosted at their headquarters in California, the event has grown exponentially from that first year and this year may be its biggest yet.
In 2015, Milwaukee announced the release of their digital tool tracking platform: ONE-KEY. The company has since released dozens of ONE-KEY enabled tools to manage them using Bluetooth, an inventory management system, and tool reporting functionality. Yesterday, the company announced several enhancements to the platforms inventory and reporting interfaces.