3D printed construction has been on top of the news the past few years, but we have yet to truly see many real world applications of the process. Last year, Dubai unveiled a completed 3D printed office building, which they say was built in only 19 days, but news has been pretty slow until the world’s first 3D printed bridge was completed recently.
Designed by The Institute of Advanced Architecture of Catolina (IAAC), the world’s first 3D printed pedestrian bridge was unveiled in Alcobendas, Madrid in December of last year. The bridge measures over 39 feet (12m) long and 5.7 feet (1.75m) wide and was constructed out of micro-reinforced concrete. According to ArchDaily, it took around 18 months from the time of conception to fully complete and install the bridge.
The team also faced a major design challenge, as the maximum dimensions the 3D printer could print are 6.5 feet by 6.5 feet by 6.5 feet (2m by 2m by 2m), IAAC academic director Areti Markopoulou told ArchDaily en Espanol. For the green building enthusiasts, the printing process allowed the re-distribution of raw materials, so there was minimal waste.
The announcement of this new bridge left us curious about the developments of another 3D printed bridge in Amsterdam. In October of 2015, MX3D, a 3D printing firm in the Netherlands held their ribbon cutting ceremony for what was supposed to be the world’s first. Since that announcement, their website has yet to be updated and it’s unclear when it will be completed.
Tracking progress on any jobsite is extremely important for your schedule and budget. But, as the project grows larger, tracking progress becomes that much more difficult. How do you accurately determine the percentage of work that the subcontractors have completed across 10 stories and hundreds of thousands of square feet?
10 years ago, the most computer knowledge any construction company would require of its applicants was a basic understanding of Microsoft Excel or a scheduling software. Now, construction companies are finally getting wise to the fact that project management and document management software like Procore, Bluebeam, and PlanGrid can provide an efficiency boost to their projects. Because of this, many employers now have job openings that require knowledge of their software of choice.
If you’ve never used that specific software, how can you make yourself eligible for that role?
At the World of Concrete 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada, Bosch unveiled a world’s first in the form of their 15-Amp Corded GSH27-26 Brute Turbo Breaker Hammer with integrated GPS tracking. While many tool manufacturers have begun adding Bluetooth technology to tools, like Milwaukee’s One-Key and DeWalt’s Tool Connect, there is a limit to what Bluetooth can do. Mainly, the user has to be within about 100 feet of their Bluetooth enables tool to be able to use any of the features.
Starting this year, PlanGrid users and others interested in the world of construction technology will be able to attend an annual construction summit hosted by the company. Several other construction project management software companies have successfully implemented this type of yearly conference in the past, such as Procore Groundbreak and Bluebeam eXtreme. The in-person events are designed to get the software’s users to meet, interact, share tips, and learn from experts.
The construction industry has been notoriously slow to adopt new technology, so much so that we’re probably –and sadly- keeping the fax machine industry afloat single-handedly. Heck, half of you are probably reading this article on a computer still using Windows 2000. I kid. However, Silicon Valley has recently zeroed in on the construction world, because they’ve realized it’s one of the least tapped into markets on the planet and there are billions of dollars up for grabs. That’s not a bad thing, either.
Creating and tracking submittals on a construction project can be a pain-staking process. Many times, each submittal is tracked manually via emails or spreadsheet, which leaves companies vulnerable to allowing certain ones to fall through the cracks. Factor in lead times on materials and it could cost your project valuable schedule days or expedited shipping fees, not to mention hours that the office staff spends tracking down paperwork.
Construction robotics has been a highly covered topic in the media for the past couple years. 3D concrete printing, brick laying robots, and self-driving track loaders are just a few of the technologies that have promised to disrupt construction sites across the world. But how exactly will these innovations affect the construction industry’s workforce?
Smartphones have replaced a lot of different objects and materials on today’s construction site. They’re used for pictures, video and audio recording, and note taking, among many other uses. Beyond the typical functions most phones already have incorporated within them, there is now a significant market of accessories designed to make your phone even more useful on the construction jobsite.
We’ve compiled a list of 5 different accessories that you can buy to further enhance the power of your smartphone for construction.
The construction industry has historically been slow to adapt to new technologies, but with a recent push from Silicon Valley, a lot of money is being poured into research and development. Just a few short years ago, robotics on the construction site was thought of as a pipe dream, but now there are several companies around the world that are making it a reality. It still may be years away from being adopted in a large scale, but the industry should begin to take note of the technological changes that are happening around them.
Robotics isn’t the only construction item that made headlines last year, there have also been advances in construction materials, Augmented and Mixed Reality, smart sensors, and RFIDs.
Below is our list of the best advances in construction technology from 2017:
Getting your communications right is critical on any construction site. For effective planning and coordination, for efficient management of different teams and for health and safety, having a reliable means of keeping everyone in touch at all times is essential.