Hello, everyone. Time for our weekly roundup of articles at the intersection of building information modeling (BIM); artificial intelligence (AI); and the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) space. Here goes:
Augmented reality (AR) garnered much attention this week. The folks atEngineering.com outlined the many ways AR technologies are being used by various segments of the BIM and construction industries, particularly by architects and civil engineers. They point out, "…while a 3D model can help visualize the product itself, it does nothing to help you visualize that product in its actual end environment." The ability to see the end result not only aids in the design process, but also adds value to the client, allowing them to truly see what they've purchased.
It's much easier to sell a design when the buyer knows what they're actually buying. (Source: Engineering.com)
At the same time, another Engineering.com article points out that while AR has many advantages for AEC, there are also several possible pitfalls requiring its use be carefully monitored. "…making mistakes in construction can be devastatingly expensive and if your information isn't flawlessly accurate, you could be signing yourself up for a lot of trouble." They point specifically to miscalculations in placement (for pipes, for example), the constant motion on construction sites, and the cumbersome quality of even the best headsets currently available.
X-ray vision helps when you want to see what's going on underneath the concrete. (Source: Engineering.com)
Until now, AR has only been available through apps used on a tablet or other mobile device. Thanks to the recent release of the Microsoft HoloLens, that's all about to change. Companies like Procore and Trimble are developing applications for use with the HoloLens that not only let designers and clients view the space, but move within the space too. Rob McManamy's article outlines how these and forthcoming HoloLens applications will revolutionize AEC. As McManamy concludes, "Yes, buckle up, World. The 'Augmented Age' has left the station, and it is now moving forward."
This is only the beginning... (Source: BuiltWorlds)
AR, of course, is only one feature of the ever-expanding BIM toolbox. As the UK BIM mandate begins to move from Level 2 to Level 3, our neighbors across the pond are embracing sensor technology. Because the ideal BIM process lives beyond the completion of a building, the use of sensors allows for the continued monitoring of a project after completion. The Bechtel blog states: "…the new infrastructure's performance will be monitored over time, enabling customers to measure the extent to which it is delivering against the design expectations." Consequently, problem areas in a structure can be addressed quickly and designers can use that data in future models to avoid the problem altogether.
The whole construction process as we know it is in for a wake-up call. (Source:Memoori)
Have you ever wondered what would happen if you smashed a can of Silly String in a hydraulic press? Yeah, we hadn't either. But the results are delightfully fun to watch. Check it out here. Have a great week, everyone!