Will autonomous machines make operators an endangered species?

Autonomous equipment

It’s probably going to be a while, but a ‘no-entry’ jobsite with no human’s present is the goal as autonomous machine technology continues to advance. According to a recent article in International Construction magazine, there are a number of established construction equipment suppliers and a growing list of technology-based companies working toward that goal right now.

Autonomy is generally measured on a scale ranging from Level 1, full operator control, to Level 5, zero human interaction. The ultimate goal is a Level 5 system including all of the machines on a jobsite working with no direct human intervention.

While the technology develops operators will to a key part of the process but in changing roles. The transition will start with them remotely controlling machines they can see and culminate with their experience and expertise being utilised in a completely supervisory role to remotely monitor a ‘no-entry’ jobsite.

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