A Solution to the Homebuilding Labor Shortage? A Robot

January 22, 2019

Building a block structure with the Hadrian 105

© FBR Ltd

Building a block structure with the Hadrian 105

Fastbrick Robotics, an Australia-based engineering firm, has created a robot that is able to build a standard brick home in one to three days. Known as the Hadrian X, the robot is capable of laying 1,000 bricks per hour.

The building industry has faced severe labor shortages over the past few years. The industry has blamed the shortage for the decrease in single-family home construction and for delayed timelines on projects and a rise in prices. The number of single-family builders reporting labor and subcontractor shortages reached a record high in July 2018.

So far, the Hadrian X has only built prototyped homes within a factory, but now it is readying for its first attempt to build a home outdoors in an uncontrolled environment. The robot will build a three-bedroom, two-bathroom home.

“The house design will be a little different this time, with a few more internal walls to construct and a higher level of difficulty,” Mark Pivac, chief technology officer at Fastbrick, wrote in a blog post. “After completion of the structure, we will conduct some finishing work to trial different renders, veneers, wall linings, roof ties, and so forth.” The company has set up cameras to allow online viewers to watch the progress and receive updates of the robot-constructed house on Fastbrick’s blog.

Watch the robot in action.