Emerging technologies can benefit the construction company’s bottom line significantly.
FREMONT, CA: Construction is on the up and up. The United States presently has a strong bipartisan agreement that the national and local infrastructure deserves federal attention and funding. Technology in construction is not discussed much. Construction has a positive perspective for the future, and technology helps get there faster and cheaper. Here is where technology in construction can make a difference.
The most known tech in AEC is Building Information Modeling (BIM) software, which has increased AEC productivity. When leveraged to its fullest extent, BIM-enabled construction firms to take active roles in the early-planning operation rather than assume reactive roles later. Even though BIM software has been around, the programs are constantly enhancing. Particularly benefiting construction, they’re boosting the processing power and cross-program integration. Add-In applications combine construction programs seamlessly with design programs. This allows early detection of conflicts, and developing teams can address schedule setbacks before they happen. The time savings alone has been monumental. This integration of the Building Team is the major reason for the success of BIM.
Drones render the site landscape an accurate start to a building project or can scan structures to find maintenance needs not always visible to the naked eye. 3D scans from sites cut down on time spent finding measurements, project progress, material inventory, and surveillance. While BIM Software enabled real-time collaboration between stakeholders, drones upload real-time progress. As the cost of drones lower, the ROI they offer increases.
3D printing will offer some relief in regards to the cost of materials at some point. Additive manufacturing of concrete, polymeric foam, and steel provide solutions to existing construction problems: more efficient use of materials and project completion quickly. At the time of this writing, some problems prevent 3D construction printing from increasing adoption. The first challenge is whether or not 3D printing will comply with developing codes and standards. The second constraint is that while 3D construction materials are affordable, the upfront cost of constructing potent 3D printers is prohibitive. The startups leading this technology are teaming with established large scale construction firms or public universities to propel the R&D.