A joint initiative, known as the Integrated Robotics & Automation Solutions Initiative, was set up between the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) and Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) of Singapore in September. As part of this initiative, the government will offer up to 80% funding for construction companies that adopt robotics and other technologies to reduce dependency on low-skilled migrant labor.
The initiative is part of BCA’s ongoing campaign to modernize the country’s construction sector, with the aim of boosting productivity by automating labor-intensive tasks like painting, drilling and carrying materials on-site. It is also expected to improve safety by cutting the risk of falls from height and injuries caused by carrying heavy loads while simplifying façade maintenance and inspections. Technology vendors are invited to register their interest in the scheme by emailing the IMDA.
The Building Innovation Panel, which was set up in 2011 to facilitate the regulatory clearance of innovative solutions and expanded to include more areas such as robotics and automation in 2019, has also helped to promote test-bedding opportunities. So far, the panel has issued 100 in-principle acceptances, including for two robotics and automation solutions. One project that has received in-principle approval is an autonomous robo-carrier to be deployed in the expansion of Mount Alvernia Hospital, which is expected to increase site productivity by 30% as well as improve worksite safety.
(Sources: Global Construction Review; The Straits Times)