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Construction Technology Trends

Construction technology is a collective term for types of technology that have a specific use within the construction industry. Examples of this includes smart machinery, automated robots, virtual reality, 5G and IoT. All of which are created and adapted to aid the industry in improving working conditions, boost efficiency, improve health and safety and many other benefits.

1) Big Data

Big data is a term used to describe extremely large data sets that may be used to uncover hidden trends, patterns in behavior, unknown correlations to make more informed business decisions and serve as the basis for artificial intelligence and automation systems. It is this big data that helps evolve advancements in construction technology.
This data is being gathered from Internet searches and services, mobile phones, digital photographs, social media and many other forms of digital communication tools – such as text message, Skype and emails.

2) Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is intelligence shown by a machine in order to mimic human behaviour and machine learning (ML) is a field of AI, where statistical techniques are used to give a computer the ability to learn from data without being explicitly programmed. Both are fast becoming integral pieces of technology in the construction industry. 
Imagine a world whereby you could use computer systems to programme robots, machines, or to automatically calculate and design house building. This technology is already available and being used today, it continues to help advance construction technology with the industry able to benefit from increased efficiencies in cost and speed.

3) The Internet of Things (IoT)

The Internet of Things (IoT) is an already integral piece of construction technology and massively transforming its way of working.
IoT is made up of smart devices and sensors that all share data with each other and can be controlled from a central platform. The implications of this is huge as it means that a new smarter, more efficient and safer way of working is now very possible.

4) Robotics & Drones

The construction industry is one of the least automated industries that features manual-intensive labour as a primary source of productivity, and it is surprising that robots have yet to play a significant role.
A key obstacle to this is the construction worksite itself because robots require a controlled environment and tasks that are repetitive and non-variable.

5) 5G and Wi-Fi 6

With the evolution of new construction technology, a strong, reliable backbone for connectivity is required to support greater speeds and bigger data transfers.
5G is the fifth-generation wireless technology for digital cellular networks, boasting faster speeds, better traffic handling and less congestion. To accompany this, Wi-Fi 6, the newest standard of Wi-Fi technology is also improving on its predecessors.
With the huge improvements of cellular solutions, mobile broadband is proving a competitive alternative to the traditional fixed lines and we are seeing more construction sites and developments moving towards this and reaping the benefits of quicker installation times and greater flexibility, whilst still receiving the required level of service.
5G and Wi-Fi 6 will enable users to communicate effectively, share large scale drawings, run resource-heavy applications without compromising speed/performance. Not to mention will provide a reliable and secure communication network on which new and advanced technologies will utilise.

6) Building Information Modelling (BIM) Technology

BIM technology is an intelligent 3D modelling tool that supports engineering, architecture and construction professionals to effectively plan, design, modify and manage buildings and their infrastructure. It begins with the creation of models and supports document management, coordination and simulation during the entire lifecycle of a project (plan, design, build, operation and maintenance).
BIM technology enables better collaboration, because each expert can add its expertise area to the same model (architecture, MEP, civil, plant, construction, and structures), enabling review of project evolution and working results in real time.
Expectations are that further development of BIM features and subsequent technology will be the trigger for changes in a construction project design, development, deployment and management.
Compared to 2D drawings – it is a perfect support for clash detection and problem-solving during design, that improves planning and increased efficiency across a construction projects life-cycle. Among all benefits, it also helps to optimise the work and company processes.

7) Virtual Reality (VR) technologies / Augmented Reality (AR)

VR and AR technologies are recognised as game changer for the construction industry. It is certain that they do not belong to the gaming industry anymore.
Virtual reality (VR) implies a complete immersion experience that shuts out the physical world, whilst augmented reality (AR) adds digital elements to a live view.
Potentials of VR/AR technologies in conjunction with BIM technology are endless. First step would be to create a building model with BIM technology and then to take a sight-seeing and literally walk through and around it – thanks to the AR/VR features.

8) 3D Printing

3D printing is quickly becoming an indispensable construction technology offering for the construction industry, especially when taking into account its impact to changes in material sourcing. This technology pushes the boundaries beyond the designer’s table by creating a three-dimensional object from a computer-aided design model, building the object up layer by layer.

9) Mobile and Cloud technologies

Prior to the rise in construction technology, the construction industry had been notorious for being one of the least digitalized industries. Only in recent years has the technology that can handle the challenging environments, workflows and complications of such a physical industry evolved and now continues to impact the sector – mobile and cloud technologies being one.

10) Blockchain technology

Blockchain technology impact on the construction industry has become increasingly significant in recent months. This technology was born in 2008, as a result of establishing a digital currency or cryptocurrency (like Bitcoin or Etherium).

 

Source: https://ukconnect.com/construction-technology-trends/
Editor: Le Van Phuc

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