AI and IoT are having a positive impact on all aspects of our life, making things easier to do, and improving our productivity. One of the industries that are currently getting significant benefits from the latest technologies in the construction industry.
AI and IoT are providing a positive impact on construction sites creating a safer and more efficient environment for workers. This is an important achievement considering that construction workers are killed on the job five times more often than other types of workers.
In this article, we are going to cover the top 5 ways that are improving the construction industry.
Old ways to monitor the construction site were prone to human errors, took a lot of time, prevented people from figuring out how to grow a construction company, and required a lot of effort from workers, thankfully for us, IoT and AI are making that process faster and easier, with an almost non-existent rate of errors.
Autonomous vehicles and UAVs like drones are used for monitoring construction sites, gather the survey maps, and taking aerial photos of the website. These devices can even track the progress of a construction project remotely.
The next step is to use an algorithm that analyzes these photos for safety hazards and correlates these images with the accident records of the site. Using aerial photographs will help identify those problems that are not easily recognizable from the ground. IoT and AI provide high accuracy, and it is cost-effective even for the smallest businesses.
Autonomous Construction Equipment
Autonomous vehicles aren’t only for our personal use. Several companies are building autonomous construction equipment to increase productivity, do repetitive tasks in a more efficient way, faster and with less use of fuel. The latest technologies allow an operator to program the coordinates of a hole that needs to be excavated and let the excavator do all the work.
Autonomous loaders, excavators, and construction machines are the future of the construction industry. These machines work by sensors that enable them to “see” everything around them and withstand dirt, dust, and vibrations. Operators can be right next to the machine supervising its work, or control them remotely.
The introduction of autonomous equipment to the construction industry doesn’t mean the loss of thousands of jobs, operators will still be needed to coordinate and supervise the machine, but the work will be safer for them, the job will get done more efficiently, and there isn’t going to be human errors.
Thanks to the AI, predictive applications can test different materials like traffic cones that will be used on the construction, which will save time during inspections. This application will work by gathering information through data collection and analytics to reduce costs and improve efficiency.
These applications can forecast project risks, track imperfections in critical structures, prioritize equipment maintenance, help provide real-time solutions, and prevent unplanned downtime. Predictive maintenance helps to predict when an equipment failure might occur and prevent that occurrence by doing the correct support.
Protection of Workers
Wearable technology is an innovative invention to improve the safety of workers. Some of the options they currently have are the Smart Cap that uses brain waves to measure the fatigue if a worker falls asleep the cap sends an alert through vibration or noises to wake up the wearer. Supervisors will be able to know who falls asleep.
Spot-R clips can identify a worker and their location at any time. Supervisors will be able to know the site of a worker that has slipped or fallen. It has push-button alerts that indicate if a worker is injured and a self-alert button to notify a supervisor or project manager about an emergency. This device reduces fatalities and the risk of suffering and injury in the construction site.
This is used on building projects with repetitive floorplans or layouts in the designs of hotels, hospitals, schools, and apartment buildings. Offsite construction comes in two forms: modular and prefabricated. In the first one, entire rooms can be built completely and attached to the structural frame.
In the prefabricated models, all the components are built offsite and then transported to the construction site to be installed. Offsite construction requires less labor, less energy; it improves safety because hazards are most likely to occur onsite than offsite.
The use of AI & IoT might be something new for the construction industry, but it is already having a positive impact in the construction industry, and construction companies should start to prioritize the investment in these areas.