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Wall-crawling robots sound out loose tiles on Tokyo buildings

Replacing human inspectors cuts costs by 25% and improves safety

BlueCrawler taps on walls with a rod as engineers listen for the telltale sounds of loose tiles.

TOKYO -- Lightweight robots crawl over buildings' outer walls tapping on tiles in a safety inspection service recently launched by a unit of Tokyo Gas, shaving costs by a quarter compared to using human inspectors.

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