Known for the slow adoption of technology, the construction industry is starting to take a long hard look at adopting them due to cost pressure and buyers’ demand.
Text by Benjamin Ken Yong
Organic admixtures that are mushroom-derived or calcium-secreting bacteria that allows buildings to be “grown” or repaired are some of the new technologies that are very promising but are still being tested. The one most enthusiastically embraced by developers however are new software design tools to manage construction work, in particular, the Building Information Modelling (BIM), a 3-D computer modelling system that replaces traditional hardcopy blueprints. BIM, combined with the easy availability of handheld devices such as mobile phones, allows architects and contractors to collaborate more easily and make on-the-fly alterations.
Other products that are gaining acceptance in the construction industry are new construction materials, augmented-reality marketing solutions, robotics, drones and automation enablers.
We list out several innovations that would make a huge impact on the industry:
1. 3-D printed houses (with robots) – the next big thing?
A 3D printer recently built a 406 sq ft house in Russia within 24 hours. Earlier this year, MIT built a dome 12 ft high and 50 ft wide in 14 hours using a 3D printer robot. In 2016, 3 big 3D-printed projects completed in China. Dutch architects are also in the process of printing an entire building using a specially built machine called KamerMaker. It is expected to finish by end of this year, according to reports.