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FBR (ASX:FBR) - Managing Director & CEO, Mike Pivac
Managing Director & CEO, Mike Pivac
Source: FBR (Twitter)
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  • Shares in FBR (FBR) spike this morning after the company said it has completed its first house structure using Wienerberger’s Porotherm clay blocks
  • The Wienerberger blocks are the largest to be used by FBR’s Hadrian X system, with each block equivalent in size to 12 standard bricks
  • FBR says it initially planned to complete the Wienerberger pilot program in Europe, but COVID-19 border restrictions meant this wasn’t possible
  • Nevertheless, FBR and Wienerberger plan to take on some more pilot work for Hadrian X and the large clay blocks in Europe as soon as border restrictions allow
  • Shares in FBR are up 5.77 per cent to 5.5 cents each at 10:41 am AEDT

Shares in FBR (FBR) have spiked this morning after the company said it had completed its first house structure using Wienerberger’s Porotherm clay blocks.

The blocks are the largest to be used by FBR’s Hadrian X construction robot and also the largest produced by Wienerberger, with each block the equivalent in size to 12 standard bricks.

According to FBR, the house was built with gable ends roughly five metres high — a common style throughout Europe.

In fact, Managing Director and CEO Mike Pivac said FBR and Wienerberger were initially planning to complete this pilot program in Europe, but COVID-19 border restrictions threw a spanner in the works.

“Although we expected to have a Hadrian X deployed to Europe this year to complete this pilot program, the global conditions caused by COVID-19 have meant that we must conduct the program here in Australia, with a view to deploying to Europe when conditions have improved such that it makes sense to do so,” Mr Pivac said.

“Both parties are committed to advancing robotic construction together and improving the efficiency, sustainability and digitalisation of the construction industry, and we look forward to continuing our work with Wienerberger.”

The Wienerberger blocks used as part of the pilot construction program are already approved for use in European markets.

According to FBR, the European-style structure was built using two adhesives: one already usually used by FBR and another typically used by Wienerberger with its blocks in Europe.

What’s next for Fastbrick and Wienerberger?

FBR said the two companies planned to take on a European pilot building program once pandemic-related circumstances allow for this, but in the meantime, the Australia-based program sufficiently shows Hadrian X’s ability to work with construction materials and architectural styles commonly found in Europe.

According to FBR, roughly 700,000 new low-rise homes are built each year in the European market.

As FBR and Wienerberger wait for the European pilot programs, the companies will take on some more optimisation work for both Hadrian X and the Porotherm blocks to make sure they’re field-ready for the programs.

Hadrian X is a construction robot designed by FBR to efficiently and precisely lay bricks for building work.

FBR claims the tech can help dramatically slash build times while reducing waste and improving building site efficiency.

Shares in FBR were up 5.77 per cent and trading at 5.5 cents each at 10:41 am AEDT. The company has a $116.5 million market cap.

FBR by the numbers
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