FLY­ING HIGH

The mar­ket for drones in the Gulf is ex­pected to reach $1.5bn by 2022

MEP Middle East - - MARKET FOCUS - Ref­er­ences: https://www.dro­ne­ge­nu­ity.com/con­struc­tion-drones­bim-soft­ware/ https://www.e-zig­u­rat.com/blog/en/can-drones-beu­ti­lized-in-con­struc­tion-for-cre­at­ing-ac­cu­rate-bim­mod­els/

BIM is the process of cre­at­ing and man­ag­ing in­for­ma­tion on a con­struc­tion project across its life­cy­cle. Such a process is a dig­i­tal revo­lu­tion for the con­struc­tion in­dus­try. Drones con­tribute to this ap­proach in var­i­ous ways such as 3D modelling and progress mon­i­tor­ing. The mar­ket for drones and drone tech­nol­ogy in the Gulf is ex­pected to reach $1.5bn by 2022.

Com­pe­ti­tion in the con­struc­tion in­dus­try is grow­ing. Busi­ness In­for­ma­tion Mod­el­ing (BIM) soft­ware has been around for a while, but savvy engi­neers, ar­chi­tects and con­trac­tors are now dis­cov­er­ing the power of com­bin­ing BIM with drone tech­nol­ogy to get a leg up.

Dur­ing the con­struc­tion stage, main­tain­ing proper doc­u­men­ta­tion of the project progress sched­ule is dif­fi­cult. Usu­ally there would be a site man­ager travers­ing around the site cap­tur­ing pho­to­graphs at ran­dom points and then pre­par­ing the whole site re­port based on th­ese lim­ited pho­to­graphs. With the in­tro­duc­tion of drones into the con­struc­tion in­dus­try, a se­ries of high def­i­ni­tion aerial shots and videos can be eas­ily cap­tured so as to get a bet­ter in­sight to the progress that has oc­curred with­out ac­tu­ally be­ing on-site. The real time data ac­quired by light de­tect­ing sen­sors mounted on the drones can help cre­ate build­ing in­for­ma­tion mod­els which can be di­rectly fed into Au­todesk’s pro­gram line such as BIM, In­ven­tor, Au­toCAD and Re­vit for early dam­age de­tec­tion pro­ce­dures, qual­ity man­age­ment ex­er­cises and other as­set eval­u­a­tion tech­niques. The point clouds

or build­ing in­for­ma­tion mod­els can be fur­ther used to re­trieve rel­e­vant in­for­ma­tion at the wish and will of the en­gi­neer.

BIM uses a wealth of data gath­ered in var­i­ous ways to ac­cu­rately cre­ate a 3D model of a project, sig­nif­i­cantly stream­lin­ing the prepa­ra­tion and on­go­ing mon­i­tor­ing phases, and re­duc­ing costs. How­ever, the key to ef­fec­tively us­ing BIM is gath­er­ing ac­cu­rate data from map­ping tools, Google Earth and other re­sources. No source pro­vides more pre­cise data, in­clud­ing aerial im­agery and dig­i­tal el­e­va­tion, how­ever, than drones. Un­manned aerial ve­hi­cles are revo­lu­tion­iz­ing the con­struc­tion and en­gi­neer­ing fields. PwC es­ti­mates the value of labour and ser­vices that will be re­placed by drones at $127.3bn. More than one-third of that is from in­fra­struc­ture and con­struc­tion com­pa­nies. How are drones be­ing used? Con­sider how lev­er­ag­ing drones can im­prove a firm’s BIM out­put.

One of the key ben­e­fits of drone us­age is pre­ci­sion. The de­gree of ac­cu­racy in the data is phe­nom­e­nal, bet­ter than any other method. Drones pro­vide a con­trol­lable, re­peat­able process not ri­valed by man­ual tech­niques. Here’s how it works. A flight path can be pro­grammed into a map­ping ap­pli­ca­tion such as DroneDe­ploy, so that it au­to­mat­i­cally sur­veys the same area each day. While in the air, the drone takes hun­dreds of im­ages. Those im­ages are sent to the cloud and in­cor­po­rated into BIM soft­ware to cre­ate a 3D im­age. The 3D im­age is over­laid on the orig­i­nal CAD de­signs to look for prob­lems and in­con­sis­ten­cies. As the project moves for­ward, con­struc­tion crews can catch mis­takes quickly, such as pipes or trenches that were not dug cor­rectly. Catch­ing th­ese in­con­sis­ten­cies up­front saves money and time­line set­backs, ad­van­tages for both con­trac­tors and their clients.

Drones can sur­vey a con­struc­tion site, cre­at­ing data for ev­ery square inch. Com­pare that pre­ci­sion to tra­di­tional map­ping tech­niques that yielded a data point ev­ery 30 or 40 feet. There’s no com­par­i­son. Data can be col­lected daily, if nec­es­sar y. “Daily scan­ning al­lows you to spot prob­lems as they hap­pen so you can ei­ther fix it or, if it’s not a big deal, model it for the next guy who comes so he won’t make a mis­take”, ac­cord­ing to a Robotics Trends in­ter­view.

The com­bi­na­tion of BIM and drone us­age stream­lines many as­pects of the con­struc­tion process. One huge way is sim­ple col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween teams. BIM soft­ware cre­ates a “shared” model, al­low­ing each build­ing dis­ci­pline to make notes that are seen by the rest of the teams and de­part­ments. The need to re­work draw­ings or cre­ate du­pli­cates is elim­i­nated. Each shared ob­ject is at­tached to a database. As new data is col­lected and con­struc­tion specs evolve, the model quickly up­dates, giv­ing all team mem­bers real-time ac­cess to the lat­est 3D ver­sion.

Con­struc­tion Work Zone re­ferred to 2015 as a “tran­si­tional year” for drone use and pre­dicted 2016 as a “break out” year for com­mer­cial drone use. The to­tal drone in­dus­try will be worth $127bn by 2020.

PwC says drone so­lu­tions are best suited for sec­tors that re­quire high qual­ity data, busi­nesses that man­age as­sets dis­persed over big ar­eas, largescale cap­i­tal projects and in­fra­struc­ture main­te­nance, all ac­cu­rate de­scrip­tions of projects han­dled by con­struc­tion and en­gi­neer­ing firms. Drone us­age ben­e­fits con­trac­tors and their clients. In­vest­ing in and us­ing this tech­nol­ogy now will put a com­pany ahead of its com­pe­ti­tion.

The com­bi­na­tion of BIM and drone us­age stream­lines many as­pects of the con­struc­tion process.″

Drone so­lu­tions are best suited for sec­tors that re­quire high qual­ity data.

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