By Yvette Cruz
Roofing repairs aren’t always as simple as they need to be. Between 45-degree angles and multiple story buildings there are challenges and safety concerns. Some contractors use scaffolding while others need actual cranes to get the shingles or tiles up onto the roof.
This can be extremely dangerous and even the most experienced of contractors can still become injured in unforeseen incidents.
Luckily, there’s a team of engineers working on building a robot that can take on some of the dangerous roofing work. “Renovate Robotics is building systems for the express purpose of installing shingles – including the asphalt and solar varieties at launch,” reported Brian Heater for TechCrunch. The start up for this project has already surpassed $2.5 million in pre-seed money.
As of now, the prototype is human operated, so there is still a lot of monitoring involved in installing the shingles. But the robot itself is secured onto the roof and moves across the surface in an “X, Y” axis. As it moves, the machine will replace the shingle and then move onto the next one. Currently, it does need to be reloaded by hand when the shingles run out, but this allows for collecting data for more accurate results in the future.
Abe Murray, managing partner at Alley Robotics Ventures, a leader in the pre-seed funding effort, told Tech Crunch, “Renovate’s solution will reduce the danger of roofing, and over time provide a path for the deployment of solar shingles at scale.”
Dylan Crow, co-founder of Renovate Robotics shared that the plan is to work as a subcontractor for roofing contractors, a practice that is common in the industry. They would then move onto to a RaaS model, or rental as a service, allowing contractors to lease and operate the robots on their own.
Moving towards the future, this type of technology could lead to new opportunities and create a safer working environment for everyone.
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Original article source: TechCrunch
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