Within the last decade and a half, technology has grown exponentially and nearly every industry has been impacted as a result. The construction sector is no exception to this technological growth. Just to name a few industry developments: the ease of networking, project management software, the use of tablets in the field, 3D CAD and many other improvements. Construction technology continues to grow and there are several great products that have recently been brought to market.
Small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), commonly called drones, have become tremendously popular in the past few years. These drones are used for recreational purposes, commercial delivery and in the military. Now, drones are being looked at for their potential in the construction industry as a surveying tool. Many drones are extremely self intuitive to use, have advanced self balancing technology, and can be equipped with high resolution video cameras. These attributes all lend to the perfect surveying tool that can take clear, quality video of a site from a bird’s eye view. Some drones can even be controlled with tablets, giving a real time picture of what the drone is seeing high above the framing, trucks or scrap on your project. This removes the need for surveyors spending the entire day moving their equipment around trying to get clear sight lines. Companies are already taking advantage of this incredible technology, with more surveyors sure to jump on board soon.
Smarter Clothing & Gear
Construction sites can be dangerous; according the US Department of Labor, 899 people involved in construction were killed in 2014. Fortunately, new gear is being brought to market all the time which provides safe, smart technologies. One of these is the Halo Light which provides 360˚ of illumination on one's hard hat, visible up to a quarter mile. Check out this video of this cool light. Another hard hat innovation is the DAQRI Smart Helmet which allows wearers to have instant access to augmented work instructions right in front of their eyes on the visor equipped on their helmet. The helmet also allows video capture and thermal imaging. There are additional wearable technologies being introduced including a smart safety vests that alert workers when they are near hazards on the site (e.g. ledge without railings) as well as numerous other gear.
Esk Works, an exoskeleton bionics company has developed a platform suited for the construction sector. The technology uses lightweight yet super strong materials and allow individuals to handle long duration, hard physical activities with minimal fatigue. From the companies' website: "With Ekso Works’ innovative exoskeleton technology, your workers can now complete heavy hand tool tasks with less fatigue, better workmanship and fewer workplace injuries." This system can be easily attached to any aerial works platform and connects to heavier power tools, allowing the worker to finish his job without overexertion or strain. As bionic technology gains more traction and prices come down, we can expect to see more systems similar to this all across work sites.
Technology is constantly progressing and it is exciting to see what products will come to the construction industry next! To find out how RJP incorporates technology into their project management from inception to completion, give us a call today. (610)518-2930