Swiss robots planning to build houses using 3D printers

ETH Zürich, a university in Switzerland, has unveiled a plan to build a three-storey house – dubbed DFab House – using robots and 3D printing. 

Structural engineers and sustainability experts from ETH Zürich have teamed up with business partners on the project, which is designed to bring numerous building technologies from research labs into the real world.

The project is overseen by the National Centre of Competence in Research Digital Fabrication, and its architects, robotics specialists, and materials scientists.  Continue reading Swiss robots planning to build houses using 3D printers

Slovenia backs Yaskawa with €6 million

yaskawa slovenia

The government of Slovenia has decided to back Yaskawa’s investment in the country with €5.6 million of public money. 

Yaskawa is building a factory in the country and plans to invest a total of €25 million in the European nation of just over 2 million people.

Prime Minister Miro Cerar said at the time: ““I am very pleased that our efforts paid off and that the renowned Japanese company of Yaskawa Electric decided to invest in Slovenia.”

The Yaskawa investment is forecast to create more than 170 new jobs and the industrial giant is regarded as the “most important Japanese company” with assets in the country by the Slovenian government.

Boeing completes prototype parts for 777X wing at new billion-dollar advanced manufacturing facility

boeing 777x

Boeing says it has completed prototype parts for the wing of its new 777X Dreamliner aircraft

The company is using advanced manufacturing methods, including additive or 3D printing, in the construction of the passenger plane at its new $1 billion Everett, Washington facility.

When completed, the wing for the 777X will be the largest wing Boeing has ever built.  Continue reading Boeing completes prototype parts for 777X wing at new billion-dollar advanced manufacturing facility

Office building in Montreal given top energy-efficiency certification

The Le 1500, an office building in Montreal

A landmark building in Montreal, Canada has been given an energy-efficiency certification.

Le 1500, an office building on Robert-Bourassa Boulevard in Montreal, is now “Leed” certified in the category of “Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance” by the Canada Green Building Council.

The building was designed and developed by real estate company Ivanhoé CambridgeContinue reading Office building in Montreal given top energy-efficiency certification

Construction: Interference could undermine development of crane technology

crane collapse

Keith Armstrong, worldwide electromagnetic compatibility specialist at EMC Standards, looks at problems with electrical interference and how construction managers can minimise their risk

Cranes are synonymous with the idea of development. Typically used to construct buildings, cranes aid the economic and social development of a town or city. However, cranes suffer from a persistent problem that is indicative of a significant threat to the future of technology: interference.

In the early days of the UK Department of Trade and Industry’s EMC Awareness Campaign, there was an infamous incident where a man was crushed to death by a crane. In this case, electrical interference caused the crane to prematurely release its load while the man was operating it with his radio-control pendant. Unfortunately, this tragedy is not an isolated incident.

There was another incident with a company that claimed to have made the controls and drives for the first large scale hovercraft-testing tank in the late 1960s. It was, in effect, a sophisticated travelling overhead crane, which ran the length of a gantry along overhead rails and towed a hovercraft shape along a large pool of water in an even larger building. In those days, they used resistor-transistor logic, which ran on a 40 V rail to provide noise immunity.

Continue reading Construction: Interference could undermine development of crane technology

Smart buildings: Delta says it saved a lot of money for Telecom Italia

telecom italia building

Delta says its smart building automation solutions delivered “substantial energy savings” for Telecom Italia’s office building in the Veneto Region of Italy

Delta, which calls itself “a global leader in power and thermal management solutions”, says it has successfully implemented its Building Automation Solutions at an office site of Telecom Italia, Italy’s largest telecom operator and one of the most prominent carriers in Europe.

The smart solution, which includes Delta’s cloud-ready Building Energy Management System, enables real-time automated and remote supervision and eco-friendly control of the building’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning system to attain estimated annual HVAC-related electricity savings of more than 12 per cent and an expected payback period of “lower than two years”, according to Delta.  Continue reading Smart buildings: Delta says it saved a lot of money for Telecom Italia

CES: What’s in it for me?

The Consumer Electronics Show will be on soon. January 5-8, in Las Vegas, US. If you’re one of the lucky people going along, send us a picture or note about your highlights of the event. 

As a preview to the show, we find out from Infineon, one of the leading chipmakers for the auto market, what their view of the highlights will be, not just at CES, but also for the year ahead.

Infineon is probably going to face much more intense competition this year, mainly because of Qualcomm’s entrance into the auto marketContinue reading CES: What’s in it for me?

Dassault Systèmes launches solution for architecture, engineering and construction industries

dassault-systemes-architecture

Cloud collaboration solution from “design to fabrication” aimed at solving problems ahead of construction

Dassault Systèmes, a provider of product lifecycle management solutions among other software, has launched its “design for fabrication industry solution experience” for architecture, engineering and construction.

The company says the software gives architects, engineers, contractors, fabricators and building products manufacturers access to a digital, collaborative environment on the cloud for civil and building projects, from concept through fabrication detail with shop floors that reduces waste and rework.

Each architecture, engineering and construction project brings together new teams of designers, fabricators and contractors who use their own building information modeling solutions.  Continue reading Dassault Systèmes launches solution for architecture, engineering and construction industries

Hitachi puts robots on trial at Japan airport

hitachi emiew haneda airport japan

Hitachi, and its subsidiary Hitachi Building Systems, have begun a trial of their “Emiew 3” humanoid robot at Haneda Airport, in Japan. 

The robot, developed by Hitachi, looks a little bit like the Nao robot, in its red colouring and dimensions.

The tests will be conducted at Haneda Airport Passenger Terminal 2 (Domestic Flights) in collaboration with Japan Airport Terminal.  Continue reading Hitachi puts robots on trial at Japan airport

Verdigris launches Einstein intelligent building solution

jabil centre

Verdigris, an artificial intelligence software company, has launched Einstein, an internet of things smart sensor and metering solution that reduces energy consumption and cost in buildings.

Einstein is Verdigris’ latest IoT energy management platform. It was designed to be the easiest most-scalable connected sensor for complex enterprise facilities. By analyzing Einstein’s continuous stream of energy data, Verdigris drives smarter and more responsive building operation, saving customers tens of thousands to millions of dollars annually on energy costs.

Verdigris CEO Mark Chung says: “Einstein makes it unbelievably easy to know what’s happening inside your building in real time, down to a single appliance.

“We put hard-earned money back into our customers’ pockets each month by predicting the most accurate forecasts of utility, weather and energy data, and automating the reduction of their most inefficient energy operations.” Continue reading Verdigris launches Einstein intelligent building solution

HMS Industrial Networks acquires Intesis Software

intesis business_houseinhand

HMS Industrial Networks has acquired all shares of the Spain-based company Intesis Software – a provider of gateway solutions for heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system integration within building automation. 

Intesis was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Igualada, Spain, close to Barcelona. Intesis offers advanced communication gateway solutions and interfaces within the building automation field. 

The major part of Intesis’ sales comes from the successful “IntesisBox” building automation communication solution. Intesis works closely with many major manufacturers of air conditioning and building automation systems globally. At present, the company has 30 employees.  Continue reading HMS Industrial Networks acquires Intesis Software

Midea to spend billions on building industrial robots after buying Kuka

kuka robots having a drink

Household appliance manufacturer Midea says it will spend 10 billion Chinese money (approximately $1.5 billion) on building new robots, according to a report in the South China Morning Post

Midea, a Chinese company which now owns 95 per cent of Germany-based industrial robot maker Kuka, will build a factory to produce 7,000 robots a year, says the report.

The announcement is said to confirm Midea’s ambition to become the leading robot maker in China. The country is estimated to have bought and installed almost 70,000 industrial robots last year.

Full story at South China Morning Post

Are Britain’s small firms ready for robotics and automation?

The Ero robot, designed at Umeå Institute of Design
The Ero robot, designed at Umeå Institute of Design

New research from AXA suggests small firms in the UK are sceptical about the prospects of next-gen tech – from 3D printing, and smart homes, to robotics and driverless cars – reaching their workplaces.

While more than 40 per cent of small businesses don’t yet have a website, the study found that most of them do plan to move online in the next twelve months. If these plans are fulfilled, only 7 per cent of UK businesses will remain offline by this time next year. Few are ready to plunge deeper into the digital revolution, however.

Just one in five plan to migrate to the Cloud in the coming years, and only six per cent of business owners say they expect to adopt smart technologies. Driverless cars, which are set to hit UK roads as early as 2020, have an equally low resonance, as just 8 per cent of business owners expect they will drive one.  Continue reading Are Britain’s small firms ready for robotics and automation?

PcVue introduces mobile solution for intelligent buildings

arc info entry_ipad_pcvue

ARC Informatique takes PcVue into new market with mobile monitoring system for intelligent buildings 

PcVue Solutions are now entering an uncharted market to provide an innovative mobile offering for SCADA in intelligent buildings.

Proximity-based services enabled by micro-geolocation for Indoor Positioning Systems (IPS) are growing quickly, says the company, and it apparently wants a share of the market.

PcVue is ARC Informatique’s core product, the company is an independent provider in HMI/SCADA software. It has been contributing to the evolution of the automation industry for 30 years by providing a flexible solution for supervising building management systems, industrial processes, utilities, and infrastructure.

Continue reading PcVue introduces mobile solution for intelligent buildings

Prescriptive Data chooses MongoDB for Nantum smart building system

rudin management

Prescriptive Data, a subsidiary of leading real estate developer Rudin Management, has opted for Nantum for its smart building solutions.

Nantum is a cloud-based smart building platform and control panel built on MongoDB, the database for giant ideas.

Designed to function as the “brain” of a building, Nantum integrates existing sensor data from disparate building systems to provide a holistic view of how a building is operating.

It can then prescriptively recommend real-time system adjustments, identify operational inefficiencies, target preventative maintenance and provide 24/7, 365 building re-commissioning in real time.  Continue reading Prescriptive Data chooses MongoDB for Nantum smart building system