Understanding the Latest Home Building Technology
Home building has seen some major transformation in the past few years, even if the adoption rates among construction companies are rather uneven. Dubbed con-tech for 'construction technology', the improvements are making headlines for their innovation and noteworthy benefits. When homes can be printed by a machine rather than built brick-by-brick and concrete can heal itself without help from human hands, homeowners may want to pay attention to the new inventions to get a better idea of the future of home building.
The Technology of Breaking Ground
Before the foundation is ever poured, developers need to first scout land for their projects. Before 3D scanners and drones were invented, they would visit several sites and perform analysis to each plot of land for sale. Now, real estate professionals can use drones to get the aerial views they need to determine how well the grounds suits their needs. A 3D scanner used alongside a drone can provide precise measurements (within 2 mm) of the physical obstructions on the land (e.g., stockpiles, bushes, trees, etc.) These new inventions are also helpful during the building process. Investors don't have to visit the site to receive updates and construction leaders can identify potential inefficiencies on the job early on so they can be corrected.
The New Reality of Safety
When fatalities in construction jumped up by 6% between 2015 to 2016, it seemed clear that construction crews needed to tighten up their safety methods. Now, construction companies have the option of using computer simulations to help employees complete their training courses. The augmented and virtual reality software will let a worker feel exactly what it's like to perform their job so they know what to do when they get started. These programs can even be customized to give workers an idea of the specific dangers they'll face on each new site. This not only gives them confidence while they train but should ultimately boost their ability to function in even the most dangerous of conditions.
3D Homes to Come
3D printers can do more than just print out trinkets or models, they can actually manufacture entire homes that are ready in just hours. Start-up companies are able to print out homes in less than a day for under $10,000. This new development opens up countless opportunities for providing basic housing to different segments of the population, giving new hope to social workers and bargain-hunters alike.
As amazing as this is, the public should know that 3D printers are extremely expensive machines to engineer and their technology isn't well understood outside the industry (including home inspectors.) This trend may take some time to fully realize its potential, but the possibilities are truly infinite if the benefits can be fully harnessed.
Most Inspirada homeowners is used to performing some kind of home maintenance to ensure the structure doesn't crumble around their feet. But new materials on the market may be able to either eliminate or vastly reduce the amount of upkeep a homeowner needs to perform on a yearly basis. Nanoparticle paint and self-healing concrete are able to resist common damage to the point where they can 'fix' themselves. The paint is made from titanium dioxide, which manages to stay resilient against everything from water stains to knife scrapes. Self-healing concrete is made from shape-memory polymers, meaning it's 'programmed' to return to its original state no matter what happens to it.
A New Kind of Bricklayer
There aren't a lot of people lining up to become bricklayers today, which is just one reason why robot bricklayers are making headlines. These automated workers perform at a rate of up to 400 bricks an hour, where a human worker can only lay up to 75 an hour. This type of increase in efficiency is an intense incentive for builders who may be short on workers and time alike.
Robotic bricklayers have also recently started to improve their ability to improvise when on the job. If they run into an anomaly on the construction site, they're able to self-correct themselves so they can continue without human interaction. Robots still need to be reloaded by human hands, but their capacity may be able to cut project deadlines in half.
The true value of these technologies still remains to be seen, but the priorities of con-tech are really starting to emerge. Developers and investors alike want to build homes quickly without going over on their budgets. They want to decrease the amount of maintenance required on the part of the homeowners and increase the level of safety for their workers. These technologies breathe new hope into an industry that has been relatively stagnant for many years.