Robotics for the Building Industry




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Liebherr, KUKA and Autodesk join with RWTH institutes in the Center Construction Robotics to research the automation of construction


Liebherr, with the division Tower Cranes, KUKA as provider for automation solutions, the software developer Autodesk and RWTH Aachen University with three of its chairs (Individualized Production in Architecture, Lightweight Metal Construction, Laboratory for Machine Tools and Production Engineering (WZL) I Production Metrology and Quality Management) have announced their collaboration in the area of robotics for construction today. The industry consortium will conduct research in collaboration with the interdisciplinary research team of the newly founded Center Construction Robotics on RWTH Aachen Campus. The center is under the scientific direction of Professor Sigrid Brell-Cokcan (Chair of Individualized Production in Architecture), Professor Robert Schmitt (Laboratory for Machine Tools and Production Engineering (WZL) I Production Metrology and Quality Management) and Professor Markus Kuhnhenne (Institute of Steel Construction | Chair for Lightweight Metal Construction).

We identify disruptive processes at the Center Construction Robotics and will then also develop new matching business models. Here we collaborate closely with marketleading platform and technology enablers.

Professor Sigrid Brell-Cokcan, Chair of Individualized Production in Architecture at RWTH Aachen

  Group picture of the center's founders Copyright: © Center Construction Robotics Founding of the Construction Robotics Center on RWTH Aachen Campus

The construction sector has great potential in terms of robot-based automation. Using the example of large scale and complex facade elements and their production, a previously non-existent continuous digital chain from planning to manufacture and subsequent installation will demonstrated. The declared objective of the Center Construction Robotics is to develop the construction site of the future by way of digitalization: from preproduction to a common value creation chain, all the way to a partially automated construction site.

In Aachen and in the idea of the Center Construction Robotics we have found a very promising environment that allows all participants to take on a shaping role in the development of the digital construction site. Given the renowned collaborators Liebherr sees a good chance to make the vision of the construction site of the future a reality.

Dominique Tasch, Managing Director for Technology & Development, Liebherr-Werk Biberach GmbH, comments about the involvement of his company in the newly founded center on RWTH Aachen Campus

KUKA and Autodesk share this enthusiastic view of the collaboration.

A new age is dawning. Increasing digitalization is changing the business world – also on construction sites. The past ten years have seen hardly any increase in productivity in the German construction sector. Completely new approaches in the construction and manufacture of buildings offer the unique possibility of introducing high-performance, flexible and digital fabrication methods directly to the construction site by way of robot-based automation.

Alois Buchstab, Vice President Advanced Robotic Applications, KUKA

We want to identify BIM use cases for construction robotics as part of our syndicated research at RWTH. With Autodesk FORGE, we offer a technology platform that allows the integration of BIM and robotics and which is also open to all companies in the construction sector that create digital value.

Ralf Moser, Leader BIM Transformation, AEC Digital Expert Group, Autodesk GmbH