Bouygues signs JV on remote operation of machines

Lextan, a specialist in remote driving systems, and Bouygues Construction have signed a three-year cooperation agreement to carry out a research and development programme on remote and assisted driving of construction equipment.

It is reported that this cooperation has already resulted in the development of a project for operating a tower crane from the ground, which forms part of a Bouygues Construction R&D programme led by Bouygues Construction Matériel.

The project offers crane drivers video assistance, augmented reality and even a degree of automation. Lextan says that it proved that its technology makes remote crane operation possible during an initial experimental phase successfully carried out using a crane. A demonstrator will be brought into service on a construction site during 2021. The solution will also feature driving assistance with video object recognition and an interactive dashboard.

Patrick N’Kodia, director of Bouygues Construction Matériel, said, “While thinking about the alternatives to the crane lift, compulsory for all cranes above thirty metres since January 2019, we worked with Lextan on operating the crane from the ground. As we were exploring this subject, we realised there were many other advantages.”

The system is designed to control construction site machines in a different way by simplifying the work of drivers in safety, increasing their abilities through new functions and thereby contributing to the industrialisation of construction sites.

Marc Lambert, Founder and CEO of Lextan, said, “We are delighted to support, and to have the support of, Bouygues Construction, its R&D and its subsidiaries in the technological evolution of their tools and working methods and more generally to contribute to the modernisation and digital transformation of the construction sector.”

The aim of the cooperation between Lextan and Bouygues Construction is to implement these new remote driving systems over the next three years.