Where artificial intelligence meets 3-D printing
London-based company Ai Build is experimenting with artificial intelligence and machine vision for its large-scale, 3-D printing process, according to Engineering.com.
Ai Build aims to solve the problem of robots being unable to see during production by installing sensors on the robot that allow it to track what it does, find errors in production and correct those mistakes.
- The company told Engineering.com that the new technology is still in its infancy, but it plans to focus attention on the platform in the coming months to improve its additive construction capabilities.
While still evolving, 3-D printing technology has the potential to reduce production time, labor costs and construction waste. Researchers are constantly finding new ways to utilize the technology, including creating substitutes for concrete, building emergency housing, constructing hotels and even producing equipment for the job site.
The Ai Build product isn't the only attempt to improve the robotic 3-D printing process. Earlier this year, international contracting giant Royal BAM Group announced that it is developing a freeform 3-D robotic printer that can navigate a construction site and print on its own. The product uses continuous treads for autonomous movement and can print with materials such as concrete and stone.
Two September reports from Forrester and Allianz found that intelligent agents, among other new technologies, are disrupting the construction industry by potentially replacing skilled labor. It remains to be seen how AI will impact the labor market, as the industry is likely decades away from completely swapping out equipment operators and drivers with AI-powered technology.