Typically, progress tracking on a job site involves a supervisor walking around a job site with a note pad and a camera, but technology is slowly changing the way that process is being done. Drones have been all the rage in construction recently and a team of contractors and software developers have made them an ultra-powerful tool, but some workers are not too thrilled about it.
The Sacramento Kings are building a brand new $477 million basketball arena, the Golden 1 Center, that is set to open in the Fall of 2016. Deadlines in any project are extremely important, but missing a deadline and messing with a sports team’s arena opening has to be near the top of the list for the worst deadline to miss. That is one of the reasons that Turner Construction is using a new drone technology developed by a team of professors from the University of Illinois (U of I).
The software takes video from drones flying above the construction site, converts it to a three-dimensional model, and compares that model to the computerized schedule. This then allows the construction team to analyze where their project is falling behind. With a site as big as this stadium construction, it can be extremely easy to not realize a delay until it’s too late. The video on this project is being captured by ImageInFlight, who specializes in drone video.
Mani Golparvar-Fard, one of the software developers and assistant professor of Civil Engineering at U of I, told MIT Technology Review, “We highlight at-risk locations on a site, where the probability of having an issue is really high. We can understand why deviations are happening, and we can see where efficiency improvements are made.”
Unsurprisingly, many of the construction workers on site are a little weary of being watched so closely, fearing their privacy and being required to work even longer hours to keep pace. The U of I development team is also currently working on another platform that would monitor individual workers and their tasks even more closely. That technology is still in testing.
Below is the most recent drone footage of the brand new area, which shows the first roof truss being installed:
New Boss on Construction Sites Is a Drone | MIT Technology Review
CAT, the name synonymous with heavy construction equipment across the world, has been slowly adding technology to its brand over the past year. Early last year, the company announced it would be releasing a rugged smart phone, which was also the first ever to have a built-in thermal imaging camera. This year, they’re releasing their first step into the world of tablets.
Video feeds on a construction site are not only great for timelapse videos, they can potentially help stop intruders who enter your site.
On August 18th, around 200 new tools were showcased at the annual DeWalt Media Event. This particular event was held in Nashville, Tennessee, where you can’t escape country music no matter how hard you try.
Below are what we thought were the highlights of the event. Let us know what new release you’re most excited about!
Falls from height is one of the leading causes of death among construction workers and ladders are a major contributor to that number. According to the CDC, falls from ladders caused 64 fatalities and 11,500 injuries in the construction industry alone in 2011. There are many things ladder users can do to make their work safer, like setting it at proper angles on level ground, checking for damage, and maintaining 3 points of contact, among others. One technology company is trying to take some of the thinking out of ladder set up.
Almost exactly 2 years ago, we shared details about an autonomous, driverless construction work zone vehicle that would be the first to hit US streets of its kind. That vehicle is gearing up to hit US streets as the Colorado Department of Transportation has teamed up with its developers.
When construction companies initially started to adopt mobile technologies like tablets and smartphones, there was a race between many construction technology companies to be the future leader in the area. As the years rolled on, it became less and less likely that one app was going to be the end-all-be-all, like AutoCAD became in the architectural design world. There’s not one app out there right now that provides every single function that a construction company needs, because each company is very unique. The solution? Integration.
Communication is key to a safe and productive construction environment. One of the biggest challenges of effective communication on job sites is the complexity and size of the project, which inhibits being able to contact the correct people in a timely manner. Tracking devices have been a hot button issue in construction news for the last few years. Some examples include RFID tag sensors in hard hats, such as the one being used on certain job sites in Washington DC and time sheet applications, which allow employers to track their employee’s locations using the GPS on their phone’s or tablets.
In March of this year, Elon Musk announced that Tesla would begin taking orders on their Solar Roof Shingle concept. Tesla Solar Roof is a solar power roof system that eliminates the need for bulky solar panels installed over top of traditional roof materials. Instead, the shingles themselves, which come in a variety of different styles, are the solar panels.
At the company’s second quarter earnings report, Tesla announced that the first solar roof installations have been completed.
[guest post] The progress of construction sites is usually captured by taking still photos of different areas that have been subject to change. Documenting a full construction site requires a lot of pictures (usually more than ten per room), and even then not every corner of a room can be captured.
Standard vertical elevators have had it too good, for too long. After the first cable dependent elevator was unveiled in 1857, not much has changed in the elevator industry. They’re still using cable systems and still only going up and down. But not anymore. ThyssenKrupp has officially made a multi-directional elevator a reality.