WASCO, Inc. brings the world’s first commercially-available bricklaying robot to Nashville for the new Welch College campus project just northeast of the city in Gallatin, slated to begin this week.

“Bringing SAM100 onto our team allows us the closest technology equivalent to having an additional mason onsite,” said WASCO CEO Andy Sneed. “The robot doesn’t eliminate our masons at all. It simply helps them do more with less crew, while potentially minimizing the physical stress of repetitive brick-lifting motions.

“Skilled craftsmen are in dire shortage in Middle Tennessee,” Sneed continued. “And, WASCO prides itself on having the utmost in quality craftspeople. We are hoping to develop SAM as a reliable tool for our craftsmen, assisting them in their craft. We do not ever expect the robot to replace the need for human artisans familiar with the craft.”

SAM100, the semi-automated masonry robot unveiled at WASCO’s 50th anniversary celebration last week, will be working in conjunction with a mason to increase worksite productivity. The innovative bricklaying robot was designed by Construction Robotics to improve bricklaying efficiency. Working with a human mason, SAM100 lays bricks as fast as a mason with the help of a completely human team.

The revolutionary, semi-automation technology requires a mason to work alongside the robot and does not replace its human predecessors on the worksite. Instead, it reduces the number of workers needed for a project, considerably decreasing the time needed to complete the bricklaying portion; SAM100 plus a human mason is equivalent to roughly two and a half workers when operating well, which WASCO is working with Construction Robotics to improve.

Brought onboard for the Welch College campus project by longtime clients Southland Constructors of Brentwood, Tennessee and Focus Design Builders, of Wake Forest, North Carolina, WASCO previously worked with SAM100 on two, much smaller Nashville projects: a school and a retaining wall. The current project is the first of its size for SAM100 in Nashville and will be under construction for about one year.


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