A robotic-themed innovation workshop was held at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) on Monday, highlighting opportunities for the construction and infrastructure industries to transform their business.
Science and Innovation Minister Leeanne Enoch said the workshop aimed to gather robotic experts with representatives from Queensland’s construction and infrastructure industries under one roof to shape the research direction of the Australian Centre for Robotic Vision (ACRV), which focuses on developing new technologies to create the next generation of robots that can see and understand complex, real-world environments.
“New technology is allowing robots to be able to see and identify a problem and then perform a solution. This progression is bringing robots into workspaces, working alongside people to solve everyday problems,” Ms Enoch said.
“That’s where the Queensland-based ACRV is leading the way. By working on a new generation of visually enabled robots, they’re looking to take this technology beyond traditional manufacturing-based functions.”
ACRV Director Professor Peter Corke said robots were underutilised in the building industry but had the potential to radically transform the sector.
“There are a plethora of opportunities to automate a building site, creating safer workspaces and giving workers more autonomy to apply their specific skillset,” Professor Corke said.
“Robots can perform many useful tasks like inspection, measuring, assembly and material transport in a range of environments.”
Minister Enoch said the workshop saw industry representatives give an outline of their workspaces and present specific problems to the ACRV, providing a valuable background and basis for robotic assistance.
“Workshops like these are about gearing research and development to respond to industry needs. This robotics-themed workshop is just one example of the government working to reinvigorate research and development to help create the knowledge-based jobs of the future,” Ms Enoch said.
“It is another step towards cementing Queensland’s reputation as a leader in industry innovation and the knowledge economy.”
The ARCV has a total funding of about A$26 million for its seven-year research program which will initially apply in the agriculture, smart manufacturing and construction sectors, as well as remote inspection and monitoring.