Boston Dynamics’ Robot Dog Involved In Construction Of Battersea Roof Gardens
The redevelopment of Battersea Power Station – one of London’s most iconic buildings – is a pretty big deal, so naturally, the team responsible for the development wants to make sure everything runs smoothly.
Step forward, Spot the Robodog. Foster + Partners, the architects behind the new HQ, announced this week that it had ‘adopted’ the Boston Dynamics’ Robot Dog to oversee construction of the Battersea Roof Gardens project.
The firm, which also designed Apple Park in California, said Spot was being used regularly to scan the site and monitor progress. Information collected by Spot is being fed into a scale model of Battersea Power Station, creating a 4D ‘digital twin’ of the site that updates as the real thing is built. This allows the design team to compare their plans for the building with the reality of the construction in progress.
Spot has been seen in all sorts of roles recently, doing everything from scanning for radiation in Chernobyl to serving beers in Seville. Now, as per Dezeen, Boston Dynamics is working with Foster + Partners’ Applied Research + Development Group to explore how the robot dog could be used in ‘dynamic environments’ like construction sites.
The idea is that Spot can navigate uneven terrain and areas that might not be safe for construction workers. The robot dog is remote-controlled, and performs weekly scans along the same pre-mapped route. The architecture firm says that having regular scans helps to ensure different construction teams stay on the same page as the project develops.
Martha Tsigkari, a partner at the firm, said in a press release:
The ability of Spot to repeatedly and effortlessly complete routine scans, in an ever-changing environment was invaluable not only in terms of the consistency but also the large amount of high-quality data collected.
Our scans can ensure that very quick and accurate changes to the newly designed system could be made to accommodate the differences captured by the scans – all in a matter of days. This could result in savings both in terms of time and money.
It looks like Spot has been warmly welcomed into the team. A video produced by the firm shows the robot dog being presented with his own lanyard and ID card before going on a tour of the site, although it looks like they forgot his hard hat and hi-viz.
As well as commercial units, Battersea Roof Gardens will also house apartments, a hotel, and a rooftop infinity pool.
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