Technology is a great enabler, and it impacts almost each and every aspect of our lives. Whether it is computer technology or mobile telephony, today, they have become integral parts of our lives.
Technologies also have made workplaces better, efficient, productive, and safer, and almost each and every primary industry has benefitted from it.
The role of modern technology in the construction industry is increasing significantly, and this is because there are some distinct and advantages and benefits associated with it.
Whether it is giving new meaning and thrust to safety and signaling devices like Orion Flares or improving the overall efficiency and security in the construction industry, the role of technology is becoming all-pervading and indispensable. It is impacting almost each and every aspect of the construction industry.
In this article, we will be having a look at the ways in which this industry is absorbing new technologies to give a fillip to efficiency and also making use of it to set new benchmarks in safety.
1. Greener Asphalt
One of the biggest challenges facing the world today is environmental degradation and pollution at all levels. The construction industry is often accused of being a big spoiler as far as the environment is concerned.
However, this may not be entirely true as new technologies are contributing to greener and cleaner asphalting. This has not happened suddenly, and it has been in vogue since the late 1960s. The construction industry started using recycled rubber from old and used car tires as the asphalt admixture for laying roads and asphalting.
This has continued, and today newer and greener technologies are being used for this purpose. These methods and materials are leading to improved quality of asphalts, apart from bringing down the cost of materials that are used.
Further, there also is a significant reduction in landfill waste. Today, we see the use of single-use plastics and recycled bottles in asphalting of roads. This is a live example where technology is contributing quite a bit in the construction industry. It is making the world a cleaner, greener, and more environment-friendly place.
2. 3D Printed Concrete Bridges
The use of additive 3D printed concrete bridges is not exactly new. This technology may have been used first in 2014. However, technology was still evolving and fructifying in these areas. It was in 2017 when we saw some major changes in this area.
There was an instance where two bridges were constructed, making use of on-site commercial 3D printers. The first was a pedestrian footbridge in Madrid, and the second was a cyclist bridge in the Netherlands.
This set the ball rolling, and today 3D printing for concrete bridges is being used regularly. There are some distinct advantages when this technology is used. It could reduce the amount of cement that is consumed, and this, in turn, leads to lower carbon-dioxide emissions.
It also does away with the need for a framework, and thus wastes are reduced significantly. It also can be built into shapes that were previously possible using CGI movie magic extensively.
3. Robots At Construction Sites
The use of robots at construction sites is another significant change that technology has brought about to the construction industry.
Today a number of machines like loaders, graders, backhoes and other such machinery make use of robots to do their work. This reduces manual intervention to the minimum. It goes a long way in improving productivity and also increases the levels of safety.
Robots are now being used for bricklaying, and they are complementing the efforts of human beings. Yes, it is a fact that in some areas and situations, the human hand continues to be the best. Self-driving vehicles, dump trucks, and a few other areas are also being slowly earmarked for robotics.
4. Augmented Reality or AR
AR (Augmented Reality) applications, along with VR or Virtual Reality, are also becoming big game changers as far as the construction industry is concerned.
These were thought to be more theoretical in nature a few years ago. All that is changing, and today there are a few actual happenings in the ground where AR is playing a significant role. For example, the DAQRI Smart Helmet is something that could give a new meaning and definition of safety and security in the construction workplace.
The role of technology in the construction industry is no longer superficial or is something that could come in handy in the fringe. It is being used to improve overall efficiency, productivity, and of course, it is playing a role in enhancing safety quite a bit.