[Image above] SAM lifts a mortared brick into place. Credit: National Science Foundation; YouTube
While you may think a bricklaying robot would directly compete with skilled masons, SAM is friend, not foe.
SAM, or Semi-Automated Mason, is a robot that assists masons by partially automating the bricklaying process, increasing worksite productivity and reducing the amount of heavy lifting required by masons.
NSF-funded small business Construction Robotics, founded in 2007, developed the robot.
SAM can’t construct a brick structure all by itself, but instead works alongside masons. They program the robot with specific structure dimensions and features and load it up with bricks, and then SAM moves into place.
The robot grabs a brick and even applies the mortar, scooping it onto each brick before setting it perfectly in place. A skilled mason follows behind, striking the joints to finish the wall.
To build its bricklaying perfection, SAM is unique in that it uses a laser to correct for building platform movement, ensuring each brick is precisely placed.
Watch SAM in action in the short NSF video below.
Credit: National Science Foundation; YouTube
For more details about SAM, watch this video from Construction Robotics.
Credit: Construction Robotics; YouTube