A Robot Rubber

When planning to demolish a building there are a number of different ways to consider, blow it up, knock it down, use machinery to tear them apart – but all of these options create a huge mess and require a large amount of energy.

Omer Haciomeroglu a student from the Umea Institute of Design in Sweden has designed the ERO robot as an energy-efficient, sustainable and altogether tidier solution to demolition.


The concrete recycling robot, which won a Student Designs Gold in the 2013 International Design Excellence Awards in the United States, effectively ‘eats’ concrete much like a heavy duty vacuum cleaner.


Omer Haciomeroglu says on his website: “ERO is a Concrete Deconstruction Robot designed to disassemble reinforced concrete structures and enable the building materials to be re-used for new pre-fabricated concrete buildings.”


ERO is so efficient it manages to recycle concrete and separate it from the debris on the spot without any waste or dust.


So how does it work? ERO is placed strategically in a building in order to scan the environment and determine the optimum route to demolish its surroundings. It has different modes for complete demolishment and smarter deconstruction approaches where a building will need to be taken down step by step.


ERO uses water to break the structure up, sucks it away and separates the mix of aggregate, cement and water. When in action, it almost looks like the machine is simply erasing the building.


Reclaimed materials can then be reused as prefab concrete elements by using a water jet to crack the concrete surface, separate the waste and package and label the dust-free material. The aggregate will be sent to concrete pre-cast stations and the rebar can also be reused.


See Omer’s website for more details.