As the industry searches for process innovation that will lead to more efficiencies and more affordable product, machines are taking the place of humans. This bricklaying robot is able to perform 50% faster than its human counterparts.

The University of Nevada’s new Arts Building will require about 100,000 bricks to be installed in the three-story building. But for the first time in Nevada, about 60% of those bricks will be laid by SAM, a bricklaying robot.

SAM, which stands for Semi-Automated Mason, is being used on the $35.5 million project to cut construction time and costs and help with Nevada’s construction labor shortage. The device uses a robotic arm, computer programming, and a materials-feeder system to lay bricks at a rate of about one brick every eight seconds.

The robotic, metal arm spreads mortar on brick and uses a laser-guided system to lay rows. According to Q&D Construction, the project’s general contractor, SAM can accomplish the work of five masons.

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