Switching to an e-construction model can have impacts on all phases of design and construction but often the biggest changes occur in the field. This is where inspectors, field engineers, contractors, owners, and others will have to make changes to their daily operations. Mobile devices can be utilized in the field for collecting data, syncing data, and digitally transmitting and approving documents. These devices can be used to track all kinds of construction activities from material delivery to final approval.
Many projects already digitally capture field activities and transmit information from the field with some of the following devices, but perhaps using some combination of all of them is the ideal model for complete e-construction coverage in the field.
- Laptop computers are devices that many personnel are already taking into the field, but without connection to the internet. These same devices when paired with a cellular connection can provide real time data transfer to the office. These devices are often large, not terribly durable, and difficult to transport, which usually results in them staying in the truck or project trailer.
- Tablets can perform many of the same functions of a laptop computer but easier to carry around in the field. Tablets can often also be protected with cases that make them mostly drop proof and waterproof. With integrated high quality cameras, GPS tracking, and longer battery life, tablets can prove to be more useful than laptops in many ways. Though they will likely never be able to do all of the advanced computing of a laptop, they can usually meet all of the needs of field personnel for documenting operations and facilitating communication.
- Smart phones can also effectively perform many of the same functions that a tablet or laptop would but in an even smaller, easier to carry form. They can be especially useful for getting into awkward locations or where simple field observations will suffice. Writing long narratives and using computational applications may be more difficult on smart phones but with improving technology more and more can be done on these smaller devices.
There are other technologies that can be used on projects to provide more detailed information, more accurate information, or to help automate collection of information.
- Drones mounted with cameras can be used to give views of projects that would otherwise be impossible to achieve or very costly. For project inspection of items that are high up, or otherwise hard to get to. They can also be preprogrammed to fly specific routes also, which can give a good project overview.
- Weather stations can be installed on project sites and linked up to e-Construction devices and programs to give more accurate weather info than can otherwise be gathered from the internet. These devices can give accurate live weather data that can be crucial to weather dependent construction activities such as paving, painting and planting.
- Plan sheet locations and the associated three dimensional models can be linked to GPS enabled devices to accurately show stationing and offsets and other reference locations on a project.
We at Pavia Systems have a vested interest and considerable experience delivering successful digitized projects inspections programs with agencies across North America, and we’d like to show you how we do it.
Join Beth Chmielowskius, Vice President of Customer Experience, for a one-hour lunch-and-learn on Tuesday, August 2nd, 2016. Walk away with concrete management, field implementation and change management steps will give you a clear, actionable plan for your e-Construction deployment.