In a few months SAM (Semi-Automated Mason) will be coming to the UK. SAM is able to lay 3,000 bricks per day, four times faster than a human.
SAM can lay 800 to 1,200 bricks a day. A human typically is able to lay around 300 to 500 bricks a day.
Created by Engineers at the New York-based Construction Robotics SAM costs £330k. It has taken the US firm over 8 years to develop and test the robot.
The machine is designed to be mounted on scaffolding and can even adjust itself if the wind causes a structure to sway. It can calculate the differences between a planned design and what it actually ‘sees’ in front of it.
SAM will pick up bricks using a robotic arm, apply mortar and then lay the brick.
The cost of the machine means it likely won’t be threatening jobs just yet, but as the cost of human labour increases the more practical it will become to replace jobs with robots.
SAM is not able to work independently – yet. A human is required to feed the bricks onto a conveyor belt and another bricklayer must follow up SAM’s work by cleaning up the excess mortar.