CBPO

Tag: construction

SkyMul’s drones secure rebar on the fly to speed up construction

March 3, 2021 No Comments

There are many jobs in the construction industry that fall under the “dull, dirty, and dangerous” category said to be ripe for automation — but only a few can actually be taken on with today’s technology. One such job is the crucial but repetitive task of rebar tying, which a startup called SkyMul is aiming to completely automate using fleets of drones.

Unless you’ve put together reinforced concrete at some point in your life, you may not know what rebar tying is. The steel rebar that provides strength to concrete floors, walls, and other structures is held in place during the pouring process by tying it to the other rebar where the rods cross. For a good-size building or bridge this can easily be thousands of ties — and the process is generally done manually.

Rodbusters (as rebar tying specialists are called, or so I’m told) are masters of the art of looping a short length of plastic or wire around an intersection between two pieces of rebar, then twisting and tying it tightly so that the rods are secured in multiple directions. It must be done precisely and efficiently, and so it is — but it’s backbreaking, repetitive work. Though any professional must feel pride in what they do, I doubt anyone cherishes the chronic pain they get from doing that task thousands of times in an hour. As you might expect, rodbusters have high injury rates and develop chronic issues.

Automation of rebar tying is tricky because it happens in so many different circumstances. A prominent semi-robotic solution is the TyBot, which is a sort of rail-mounted gantry that suspends itself over the surface — but while this makes sense for a bridge, it makes far less for the 20th floor of an office building.

Animated image of a drone floating over rebar and tying it together at intersections.

Image Credits: SkyMul

Enter SkyMul, a startup still in the very early stages but with a compelling pitch: rebar tying done by a fleet of drones. When you consider that the tying process doesn’t involve too much force, and that computer vision has gotten more than good enough to locate the spots that need work… it starts sounding kind of obvious.

CEO and co-founder Eohan George said that they evaluated a number of different robotic solutions but that drones are the only ones that make sense. The only legged robots with the dexterity to pick their way through the rebar are too expensive, and treads and wheels are too likely to move the unsecured rebar. The SkyTy system was developed after early research into the area done at Georgia Tech’s robotics lab.

Diagram showing how SkyMul's drones map an area of rebar then divide it up for tying.

Image Credits: SkyMul

Here’s how it works. First, a mapper drone flies over the site to mark the boundaries and then, in an automated closer flyover, to build a map of the rebar itself and where the ties will need to go. This map is then double-checked by the rodbuster technician running the show, which George said only takes about a minute per thousand square feet of rebar (though that adds up quickly).

Then the tying drones are released, as many as needed or wanted. Each one moves from spot to spot, hovering and descending until its tying tool (much like those used by human rodbusters) spans the rebar intersection; the tie is wrapped, twisted, and the drone is off to the next spot. They need their batteries swapped every 25 minutes, which means they generally have time to put down 70-80 ties; right now each drone does one tie every 20 seconds, which is in line with humans, who can do it faster but generally go at about that speed or slower, according to numbers George cited.

It’s difficult to estimate the cost savings and value of the work SkyTy does, because the value of the labor varies widely. In some places rodbusters cost more than $ 80/hour, meaning the draw of automation is in cost savings. But in other markets the pay is less than a third of that, which compounded with the injury risk makes rodbusters a scarce quantity — so the value is in availability and reliability. Drone-based tying seems to offer value one way or the other, but that means the business model is somewhat in flux as SkyMul figures out what makes the most sense. Generally contractors at one level or another would lease and eventually own their own drones, though other methods are being looked into.

Animated image of a computer-generated grid overlaid on images of rebar.

Image Credits: SkyMul

The system offers value-add services as well, for instance the precise map of the rebar generated at the beginning, which can be archived and used later for maintenance, quality assurance, comparison with plans, and other purposes. Once a contractor is convinced it’s as good or better than the manually-produced ones currently used, this could save hours, turning a 3-day job into a 2-day job or otherwise simplifying logistics.

The plan at the company is to first offer SkyTy as an option for bridge construction, which is a simpler environment than a multi-story building for the drones. The market there is on the order of $ 30-40 million per year in the U.S. alone for rebar tying services, providing an easier path to the more complex deployments and expansion to the larger global markets.

SkyMul is looking for funding, having emerged from work done at Georgia Tech through Comcast-NBC accelerator The Farm and then being granted a National Science Foundation SBIR Phase I award (with hopes for a Phase II). They have demonstrated the system but have yet to begin their pilot program with a partner; the construction business isn’t known for its nimbleness and a drone-based solution isn’t trivial to swap in for human rodbusters on short notice, but George is confident that there are early adopters ready to jump on board. Once a few projects are under its belt the company seems likely to find serious traction among forward-thinking contractors.


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Gadgets – TechCrunch


Road Construction Services in Edmonton, AB

June 4, 2013 No Comments

road construction services

Road Construction Services

Park Paving Ltd. is located in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.  This locally owned and operated company has provided a variety of road construction services to Edmonton and the surrounding area for over 35 years.  Our services include construction and maintenance of arterial and residential roads, commercial and industrial sites, as well as private developments.


At Park Paving  we believe recycling technology offers environmentally responsible and cost effective solutions to constructing and maintaining infrastructure.  This belief has led to the creation of divisions at Park Paving dedicated to recycling.  These divisions include Recycle Crushing Industries (RCI) and Asphalt Reclaiming Company (ARC).   We integrate environmentally responsible practices into all aspects of our road construction services, from reducing carbon emissions by not idling vehicles or equipment to participating in the National Pollutant Release Inventory Program at our asphalt plant, Park Paving remains committed to the environment at all levels.


Everyone at Park Paving participates in creating a safe, fair, and equitable work environment for all our employees.  Park Paving’s safety program is recognized by the Province of Alberta’s Department of Employment and Immigration and the Alberta Construction Safety Association through their Certificate of Recognition (COR) Program.  We are also successful participants in the Alberta Workers’ Compensation Board’s Partnerships in Injury Reduction Program.


Park Paving and its employees actively participate in the community in which we live, as well as the industry in which we work.  Our community involvement includes an annual United Way Campaign, support of charitable golf tournaments throughout the summer, special projects for the Rainbow Society of Alberta and various other sponsorships.  Our industry support includes memberships with organizations such as Alberta Roadbuilders and Heavy Construction Association (ARHCA) allows us to provide input for industry improvement.

Along with safety, responsibility to the public and our employees, our goal is to meet “customer needs with quality products and service, at a competitive price”.

CONTACT US TODAY

Contact us through our website

OR

View our CBPO Profile 


Construction & Renovations – Burnaby, BC

May 29, 2013 No Comments

Renovations

 

Why choose Right-A-Way Construction for your Renovations?

Right-A-Way Construction Ltd. understands that every client has different needs, ideas, and dreams for their home renovations.  Our job is to understand your unique needs so we can design and construct the perfect space for you.

 Our team of experts is devoted to provide each client with individual attention with their project.  Our goal is to make each dream project a reality.  Our focus is to provide quality work and exceptional customer service.  And, our mission is to help each client with ease through all the steps of construction, from planning to completion, and making the experience a pleasant one.

Whatever your needs are, we’ll help you make the right decision to achieve your goals. Right-A-Way Construction Ltd. is a family-owned business with over 20 years combined experience.  It would be our pleasure to serve you!

Company Overview

Right-A-Way Construction originated through its parent company four years ago. The parent company started out as a small, one man team, doing renovations and odd jobs. The company now has grown to provide restoration and high-end renovations for various clients; ranging from well known restoration companies, insurance agents, and high-end clients; with projects ranging from single house dwellings to multiple-housing units; from kitchen renovations to penthouse fire restoration.

 Right-A-Way Construction focuses on providing quality service in a timely manner with a positive attitude to all customers.  Along with our close attention to the finest of details, our hard work and proficiency are evident in every project we endeavour.   

 Client satisfaction is always FIRST in our mind. 

CALL US TODAY!

We would be happy to provide you with an estimate and ideas for your project.

Check out our website for more information & photos

You can also view our CBPO Profile

Renovations

Beautiful Kitchen Renovations


Home Renovations

Home Renovations & General Contracting – St. Albert, AB

May 22, 2013 No Comments

Home Renovations

Home Renovations & General Contracting

Spruce Construction Inc offers a variety of services in Home Renovations and Commercial Contracting & Construction.  Our employees have worked in hospital and school settings performing  a variety of renovations, they have successfully completed full floor renovations for businesses, banks and other specialized buildings.

In the residential field, they have renovated basements, bathrooms and kitchens as well as many custom fences and decks.

Our Services

General Contractor – Spruce Construction Inc. will manage your project by providing materials, labour and quality subtrades.  We will monitor the site and organize subtrades to ensure a smooth and successful completion of your project.  Hiring a general contractor will save you time and many headaches and will leave your project in professional hands.
Commercial Contracting – Spruce Construction Inc. is also experienced in the commercial field.  We are available to install steel doors and frames, commercial millwork, deficiency and maintenance work, steel stud framing and rough carpentry.  If you require a subtrade for small commercial jobs please do not hesitate to contact us.
Basement Developments – If you are looking to develop your basement for a mother in law suite, as a rental or just for more usable space, Spruce can help you.  We can keep your basement project well organized and well built in a timely fashion.
Home Renovations – From small jobs to full renovations, Spruce Construction Inc can help you renovate your home. We also build decks and fences.

About Us

Spruce Construction Inc is comprised of two directors both of whom have extensive knowledge and experience in commercial and residential construction.   They have “spruced up” many homes, basements, fences, decks, and commercial buildings.
Timothy Boetzkes – Director –  Timothy is red seal journeyman carpenter with 10 years experience in the commercial construction field.  He has been a superintendent on several commercial renovation jobs and has completed many home renovations as well.
Hector Hinestroza – Director – Hector is a journeyman carpenter with 15 years experience in both commercial and residential construction.  He has built many homes, renovations and commercial renovations.  He has also functioned as a superintendent for the Red Deer Hospital.
Spruce Construction also deals with several quality subtrades who assist in completing jobs in a timely fashion.

Contact Us

Our Website

Our CBPO Profile


Log Construction

Twisted Log – Log Construction & Furnishings – “You Imagine… And We Create…”

May 8, 2013 No Comments

twistedlogLOGO

Welcome to Twisted Log Ltd.

 

Twisted Log is specialized in rustic custom design and furniture. Located in Cochrane, Alberta, we offer a large variety of products that reflect the comfort and style of Canadian Living.

Twisted Log is a growing company and offers a diversified range of elegant rustic designs, custom furniture, log detailing and log constructions. Our strength is to create a close relationship with our customers to ensure that we provide the best product that suites their needs…and their budget.

All of our products are handcrafted and built out of pine, fir, cedar, aspen or barn wood.

Twisted Log specializes in a range of rustic furniture styles. Each and every piece of furniture is hand made and totally unique. More and more designer trends move towards custom rustic or recycled furniture. Rustic furniture can suite every style of home. We design for all sizes of space and can also offer mutli-use furniture.  If you have been looking for a specific piece of furniture or can’t find exactly what you need, we can help you create the look that you have been dreaming of.

Log Construction

Rustic Furniture Bed

Log and Timber detailing is a way to create a rustic look with just wooden accents around or inside the home. Twisted Log has the skills and the experience to realize projects of all kinds. Log constructions, hospitality furnishing, office furnishing or parks and recreation projects. We can help you create a welcoming and comfortable environment for your guests or clients.

Log Construction

Log Cabin Construction

If you are looking to build your dream log home, log cabin, garage or shed. Twisted Log will help you design and build exactly what you are looking for.

Log Construction

Custom-Built Log Home

Log railings and stairs are a beautiful accent on any style of house. All our railings and stairs are handcrafted and custom built. Give us a call to discuss your needs.

Log Construction

Log Railings & Stairs

If you are interested in Twisted Log’s beautiful work, you can find all of their information on their CBPO Listing

You can also view much more detail & photos on Twisted Log’s Website