When we think about industries that use lasers, construction might not come to mind since many of us associate laser technology with science. But construction falls within STEM because engineers must evaluate a site before building begins. Interestingly, this isn’t the only way construction workers use lasers. To learn more about the ways we use lasers in construction, keep reading this article.
Scoping Out Areas for Construction
Before choosing a plot of land, experts may need to gather more information on the area’s topography. Mapping out the topography allows them to see what natural structures exist in addition to buildings and houses. They do this by mounting a laser to helicopters or drones and then flying them over the area. The laser scans the site to gather information. Engineers and other professionals can use this information to generate a computerized model of the location and determine where to build.
Manufacturing Essential Material
We can also use lasers to cut and weld pieces of metal together. Laser technology makes connecting I-beams and columns easier and can even be used to create roofs. Some lasers work for welding because the light provides a heat source that melts the metal so workers can combine two separate pieces.
Since lasers can reach high temperatures, it’s important to have a proper workstation for your laser. In addition, employees need to understand the safety requirements for using them because exposure to laser light can cause vision loss or burns—the more powerful the laser, the more dangerous it is.
Surveying the Ground Before Building
Laser technology serves many purposes, including projecting light, welding materials, and surveying areas. They are a great tool for engineers to evaluate a plot of land to determine its level. How does a laser do this? Often, the engineer attaches a laser to a tripod and places it on flat ground to scan the area to determine high and low points.
As we discuss this final way we use lasers in construction, it’s important to state that there are various types of laser levels contractors and engineers may need. Rotary laser levels come in handy when workers need to lay out the foundation or level flooring. However, line laser levels work best for installing cabinets and carpeting. Construction workers need a variety of lasers to build safe structures with a sound foundation.