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A. Borrmann, Y. Ji, I.-C. Wu, M. ObergrieŖer, E. Rank, C. Klaubert & W. GŁnthner

ForBAU Ė The virtual construction site project

Abstract: The paper introduces the Bavarian research cluster ForBAU which has been launched in January 2008 with the aim of an improved planning and management of construction sites, especially in infrastructure projects. To realize this goal, the research cluster focuses on developing a virtual representation of the construction site which involves all essential aspects, including models of the buildings under construction, the environmental boundary conditions, the construction procedure, the logistics processes, and the required resources. The resulting virtual construction site forms one the one hand the basis for simulating the construction process, which allows to identify critical aspects of the construction project in advance and to adapt the resources and the scheduling accordingly. On the other hand, the holistic virtual representation of the real construction site is used during the execution phase to capture all available information about the project Ė enabling site managers, controllers and engineers to get a detailed overview on its progress and identify potential problems in an early stage.

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Series: w78:2009 (browse)
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Markus Schorr, Andre Borrmann, Cornelia Klaubert, Yang Ji, Willibald Gunthner, Ernst Rank

A Product Lifecycle Management Approach for Civil Engineering Projects

Abstract: Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) is a strategic concept to develop, manage and keep control of industrial products over their entire lifecycle. The concept comprises IT-systems as well as methods, business processes and organizational structures (Arnold, 2005). The most essential component for a PLM implementation is product data management (PDM) systems that administrate all the data from initial ideas, drafts and drawings to information on the manufacture and maintenance on a central storage platform (Stark, 2005). Compared to document management systems, PDM systems provide part-oriented functions required for linking components, corresponding 3D models and drawings as well as any other related documents in a clearly arranged pattern. In addition, they also provide a convenient means of transferring and incorporating data from CAD-systems into the central storage platform. Combined with cleverly devised access rights management and an integrated workflow engine, PDM systems appear to be a good information management solution in civil engineering projects.Since those systems are designed to serve in-house information management procedures in the mechanical engineering industry, however, they have not been used for civil engineering projects so far (Borrmann, 2009). This is due to the fact that special requirements needed in construction projects have not been fulfilled yet. This paper describes both the concept and the implementation of a PDM system customized to manage data arising in civil engineering projects. As well as discussing specific requirements, it also introduces the implementation of necessary adjustments and several add-ons are presented. Thus the paper shows how an adapted PDM system originally developed for the mechanical engineering industry enables a company-wide component-oriented management of all relevant data over the entire lifecycle of a building. Beyond that, today’s inadequacies and missing features for using PDM systems in civil engineering projects are described.

Keywords: Building Lifecycle Management, Product Data Management, Document Management, Data Acquisition and Storage, Information and Knowledge Management

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Series: w78:2010 (browse)
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Yang Ji, Andre Borrmann, Johannes Wimmer, Willibald A. Gunthner

Bidirectional Coupling of Macroscopic Optimization and Microscopic Simulation Of Earthwork Processes

Abstract: In the research project ‚ÄúForBAU ‚Äď The Virtual Construction Site‚ÄĚ [Bormann et al. 2009], an integrated 3D model-based framework for simulating earthwork processes has been developed. This simulation framework consists of two major parts: an earthwork modeling and assessment tool ForBAU Integrator which integrates road, subsoil and terrain model in a holistic model and provides high-accurate quantity takeoffs of the earth movement as simulation source data [Ji et al. 2009]; The second important part is a discrete event-based simulation tool used to model and simulate earthwork processes in detail [Wimmer et al. 2010]. Both tools communicate via an XML interface. In addition of generating quantitative simulation source data, the ForBAU Integrator has been extended by the ability to model earthwork optimization problems using bipartite graphs and to solve these problems with linear programming techniques [Ji et al. 2010]. One of these problems is the Earthwork Allocation Problem (EAP). Here, the optimization objective is determining the optimal assignments of cut to fill areas such that minimal transportation costs incur. Beyond these research results, this paper presents a bidirectional coupling concept between microscopic simulation and macroscopic earthwork optimization. The aim of this approach is iteratively increasing the accuracy of the simulation results in the entire framework. On the one hand, the exactly optimized cut-to-fill assignments are subjected to the mathematical equations which describe upper and lower capacity limitation of respective cut or fill areas as well as the efficient distance between them. This optimization result implies the most effective way for the earth movement from a global point of view, regardless of any resource restrictions. On the other hand, the resource assignments and processing details are modeled on the simulation platform. The actual transportation time of the cut-to-fill earth movement (excavation, load, transportation, compaction, etc.) can be closely estimated in the simulation environment. The key issue behind this concept is to define an iterative parameter exchange between the two different subsystems. Obviously, two possible coupling-parameters can be applied in this case: the cut-to-fill assignments and the corresponding processing time. The iteration starts by initializing the cost function with an average processing time. The optimizer calculates based on this trivial cost function the optimal cut-to-fill assignments as input data for the simulator. After the simulation is finished, the simulated processing times will be re-imported for updating the cost function in the optimizer. The iteration process should end with a converging processing time of earthwork movements. This concept is already implemented and will soon be evaluated by means of a federal high-way construction project in Germany.REFERENCESA. Borrmann, Y. Ji, I-C. Wu, M. Obergrie√üer, E. Rank, C. Klaubert, W. G√ľnthner: ForBAU - The Virtual Construction Site Project. In: Proc. of the 26th CIB-W78 Conference on Managing IT in Construction. Istanbul, Turkey, October 2009. Y. Ji, A. Borrmann, E. Rank, J. Wimmer, W. G√ľnthner: An Integrated 3D Simulation Framework for Earthwork Processes. In: Proc. of the 26th CIB-W78 Conference on Managing IT in Construction. Istanbul, Turkey, October 2009. J. Wimmer, Y. Ji, T. Horenburg, A. Borrmann, W. G√ľnthner, E. Rank: Evaluation of the 3D Model-based Earthwork Process Simulation in Practice. In: Proc. of the 14th ASIM-Conference Simulation in Production and Logistic (ASIM2010), Karlsruhe, Germany, October 2010, (to appear).Y. Ji, F. Seipp, A. Borrmann, S. Ruzika, E. Rank: Mathematical Modeling of Earthwork Optimization Problems. In: Proc. of the International Conference on Computing in Civil and Building Engineering 2010 (ICCCBE 2010), Nottingham, UK, Juli 2010.

Keywords: bidirectional coupling, earthwork, optimization, simulation, road construction

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Series: w78:2010 (browse)
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