Hyundai’s Boston Dynamics Acquisition Caps a Break Out Year for Construction Robots

Boston Dynamics Construction Robot
Hyundai Motor Group to Acquire Controlling Interest in Boston Dynamics from SoftBank Group, Boston Dynamics’ Spot® (Photo Courtesy of Boston Dynamics)

2020 has turned out to be a breakout year for construction robots. From early pioneers like Construction Robotics and Branch Technologies that presented at our Summit in 2016, the industry has seen an explosion of emerging solutions across a broad spectrum of arenas, including 3D printing on and off site, autonomous inspection (such as Boston Dynamics Spot Robot), and also specialty construction applications. News of Hyunadai Motor Group’s intent to acquire a controlling interest in Boston Scientific, valuing Boston Scientific at $1.1 Billion, as part of Hyaundai’s “Smart Mobility” strategy offers some of the strongest validation of the maturation of the construction robotics sector yet.

Out of the Lab: Construction Robots are Increasingly Making it onto Job Sites

Hensel Phelps piloting spot and holobuilder
Andrew Cameron, Hensel Phelps talks robotics and reality capture. (Click on the image to Watch the Presentation.)

Earlier this year, at our Projects Conference, Andrew Cameron of Hensel Phelps Construction presented on their use of Boston Dynamics “robot dog” Spot to aid in progress monitoring on the renovation of the San Francisco Airport. Beyond Spot, though, we saw

BuiltWorlds Robotics Presentations Playlist. Nine More Construction Robotics Presentations on BuiltWorlds in 2020 (and a few shorts from Youtube to round out the experience, as well):

1.  Australian Robotic Bricklayer, FBR Breaks Out With “Walls As A Service”; Higher Speeds, Global Deals and Commercial Projects

Hadrian X Commercial Building

2.   XtreeE Co-Founder, Jean-Daniel Kuhn Talks 3D Printing in Construction


3.  BuiltWorlds Venture Forum Demo Drop – Construction Robotics Company, Okibo

Okibo Construction Robot
Photo Courtesy of Okibo.

4.  BuiltWorlds Venture Forum Demo Drop: Scaffolding Robotics Firm, KEWAZO

Kewazo Robotic Scaffolding
Kewazo Presented their Liftbot robotic scaffolding machine at a Demo Day in Fall of 2020 (Image Courtesy of Kewazo.

5.  2020 Infrastructure Conference: Advances in Smart Equipment Robotics and Connected Job Sites

Advanced Construction Robotics Tie-Bot
ACR robots are made to be user-friendly. For example, TyBot can be transported with no wide load sign, on an f250 or equivalent truck and trailer (photo courtesy of ACR).

6.   Hilti’s Eric Hollister to Discuss Exoskeletons on September’s Construction Machines Analyst Call

Hilti Exoskeleton Application Photo BuiltWorlds
As they look to tackle the industry’s looming workforce challenges, Hilti tells us about their moves in human augmentation. (Image courtesy of Hilti.)

7.   BuiltWorlds Venture Demo Drop: Bricklaying Robotics Company Construction Robotics

Construction Robotics MULE Robot
Construction Robotics got us focused on robotics in construction at our Summit in 2016. today they have expanded their product line beyond SAM with products like MULE pictured above. (Image courtesy of Construction Robotics.)

8.   BuiltWorlds Venture Forum Demo Drop: Rebartek Rebar Tying Robot (See Also Their short demonstration Video Below)

9.   BuiltWorlds Venture Forum Demo Drop: Civdrone

Civdrone Demo Drop Presentation
Civdrone Robotic Surveyor Demo Drop Presentation (Image courtesy of Civdrone.)

Represented above are just some of the presentations and session discussions around construction robotics we hosted in 2020. We have seen a host of additional products and raises in recent weeks, and we are looking forward to meeting with the entrepreneurs and other industry players and technologists behind those solutions and discussing more case studies around their applications every month at BuiltWorlds through new analyst calls, forum discussions, and demo drops. It is a fast moving segment of the industry, and, with more startups and the involvement of larger industry players and investors, we only see developments in the sector accelerating in the years to come.

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