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A Cemesova, Y Rezgui, C J. Hopfe

Possibilities and challenges created by a smart material in building performance simulation

Abstract: Smart materials are predicted to ‘revolutionise’ the A/E/C industry. They are supposed to enable a building to change colour, shape, size and opacity. However, past research shows that smart materials are still not used very often in engineering applications to their full potential. In this publication we advocate that materials should not be only chosen for simple properties such as visual, physical and insulating characteristics, but for capabilities such as being able to save/generate energy, store information, and to react to stimuli from their local environment. Therefore, this paper will research into the addition of SolaVeil to a window, its physical configuration and the possibility to model and analyse it through Building Performance simulation (BPS). This material is primarily designed to eliminate glare and redirect light. As a result it can reduce energy use caused by air conditioning and artificial lighting systems. This paper researches into the behaviour of SolaVeil in a computer simulation using two different case studies. The first will compare how changing the width but maintaining the reflective area affects illuminance distribution, and the second will determine which physical properties of SolaVeil are most effective. Finally, conclusions are drawn based on the case studies and it is shown that smaller width light shelves are the most suitable for an anti glare product. It is also determined that for SolaVeil to minimise glare in a room without compromising illuminance levels, it should have a light shelf angle of 40 degrees, cover between 40-60% of a window and its strips should be spaced 5mm.

Keywords: SolaVeil, smart materials, building system design, illumination.

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Series: w78:2011 (browse)
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Alan Redmond, Alan Hore, Roger West, Mustafa Alshawi

Building Support for Cloud Computing in the Irish Construction Industry

Abstract: The construction industry has been traditionally recognised as a fragmented sector associated with a poor level of implementation and penetration of Information Communication Technology (ICT) by Small to Medium Size Enterprises (SMEs). The ability to collaborate in parallel with a change management process system that requires a central repository that can act as a base for interoperability between various construction disciplines and their software applications has long been sought. The proposed collaborative solution is not an invention, but more of a practical innovation combining several earlier inventions into something new and compelling. Cloud computing is a collective term for a large number of developments and possibilities. It is a new layer of internet architecture that creates an open opportunity to add functionality to an increasingly global network. The characteristics of Cloud computing such as shared infrastructure, on-demand applications, elasticity and consumption-based pricing, allows all disciplines in the sector to benefit. As part of the Irish Construction IT Alliance (CITA) Enterprise Innovation Network (EIN) research on investigating eBusiness technologies for the Irish construction industry, this paper will present the findings of its research methodology in developing a Web based collaborative platform for the SME market. It is envisioned that this opportunity gap will enable SMEs to support data exchange, information sharing and supply chain collaboration across a secure and affordable network that will allow them to compete in a global environment.

Keywords: Construction, Cloud Computing, Small to Medium sized Enterprises (SME)

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Full text: content.pdf (182,855 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2010 (browse)
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Andreas Kunz, Stefan Dehlin, Tommaso Piazza, Morten Fjeld, and Thomas Olofsson

Collaborative Whiteboard: Towards Remote Collaboration and Interaction in Construction Design

Abstract: The need for improved interaction and sharing of information in construction projects has grown significantly in recent years, especially as projects have become ever more complex.The early design stage is of particular importance for the final results as most of the building lifecycle characteristics are committed at this stage and the opportunity to influence them decreases rapidly as the cost of making changes, or correcting design errors, increases dramatically. Recent advances in information technology offer methods and tools to meet this need. In view of this, CollaBoard – an interactive whiteboard for remote collaboration – was developed to support mixed, geographically distributed teams. Interconnected via a network, two or more system setups allow users to interact and share information over a common interactive vertical whiteboard. Superimposing the live video of the remote partner – “people on content” – also allows the transfer of Meta information such as gestures, et cetera; resulting in a more intuitively distributed collaborative teamwork. Based on technology such as CollaBoard, the envisioned outcome of our research is a system allowing experts from different disciplines to integrate and optimize lifecycle-related parameters into a new product. The resulting system will allow each expert to adjust his/her own set of parameters, giving access to a large database through intuitive interfaces. This article also discusses possible areas of application with focus on early design, recommends future development needs and provides a brief comparison to existing and state-of the-art systems. The development work includes interdisciplinary research and development and interdisciplinary collaboration between academia and industry.

Keywords: design process, lifecycle, remote collaboration, visualization technology, whiteboard

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Full text: content.pdf (158,968 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2010 (browse)
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Andresen J L

How to select an IT evaluation method - in the context of construction

Abstract: In a number of surveys (both national and international) it has been highlighted that companies from the construction industry have difficulties with evaluating IT investments (Andresen 1999;CICA and CIRIA 1995). The reasons for this are many but one of the major ones is the poor adoption of IT evaluation methods. This paper focuses on how companies can choose between the many available IT evaluation methods by presenting a framework for how to choose a matching method. The primary objective of the paper is to present the findings of a completed Ph.D. project, but also importantly to discuss why this topic is relevant for companies in the construction industry by highlighting the benefits of increased knowledge of the value of companies' IT investments. The framework has been developed on the basis of both theoretical and empirical data collection and analysis of the available methods, a questionnaire survey and five case studies. Firstly, 82 IT evaluation methods have been identified in a literature review (and the list is not complete), from which a number of characteristics have been derived, and this has enabled a categorisation of the identified methods. Secondly, a national survey was completed investigating the sophistication of the Danish companies' IT evaluation practice. This was done in order to establish an overview of current IT evaluation practice. Thirdly, five case studies were completed in which four different methods were tested according to their usefulness in real-life IT evaluations. The presented framework consists of (a) 21 parameters (which can be used to describe the characteristics of different IT evaluation scenarios), (b) a weighting system (allowing putting a higher emphasis on certain parameters) and (c) a set of procedures for identifying a matching IT evaluation method. The framework's output has been validated by comparing these with the experience gained in the case studies.

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Full text: content.pdf (520,674 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2002 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.strategies (0.021078) class.roadmaps (0.020571) class.processing (0.007171)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by the Aarhus School of Architecture, Denmark. The assistnace of the editor, Prof. Kristian Agger, is gratefully aprecciated.


B.H. Goh

Progression in IT adoption and stage of IT maturity in the construction sector of Singapore

Abstract: The IT maturity model, based on Nolan’s Stages of Growth Model, is applied to analyse the characteristics of IT users, IT facilitators and IT providers in relation to their respective degrees of awareness, degrees of application and degrees of integration. The objective is to assess and draw useful conclusions about the progression in IT adoption by the construction sector in Singapore. At the same time, it can help to determine the stage of IT development for this sector. The data used for the analysis includes information obtained from an industry-wide questionnaire survey followed by informal discussions with industry players, as well as a review of the relevant publications. Evidence shows that there is an increasing trend of companies improving their efficiency and productivity through using IT. There is also an increasing trend of education institutions promoting IT usage through providing training. And, catering to this, there is an emergence of software development by IT vendors. Going beyond, it is clear that stakeholders need to focus their attention on achieving integration of technology, process and people as the next stage of development. It is recommended that appropriate strategies be put in place.

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Full text: content.pdf (28,476 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2009 (browse)
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Bedard C

The validation of integrated CAD in building engineering design

Abstract: The need and the urgency to develop integrated CAD software for building design are well established in industry and academia alike. The means and the approach to achieve this objective are however not soclear and do not meet with general agreement. Even the final product itself - integrated CAD - has different meanings for different people.Like other research groups in building studies, we have developed a number of integrated building design systems in the last few years thateffectively combine different activities and types of expertise in a unified approach. For these successful research initiatives, the fundamental issue of validation remains a very difficult one to answer properly. On the one hand, reference cases do not exist to benchmark the operation of an integrated system, as in the case of experimental or empirical processes. On the other hand, no clear guidelines have emergedyet from commercial software developers in the construction industry that claim to have achieved 'integrated CAD' as soon as some form of file transfer exists between an application software and a CAD package.From the study of some integrated CAD systems for building design recently developed in industry and at the CBS, this paper will attempt tocircumscribe the main aspects of the validation issue, e.g. what are the characteristics of integrated CAD ? what kind of performance is expected from such systems ? are current systems delivering what building design practitioners need ?

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Full text: content.pdf (426,635 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1992 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.bestPractise (0.020523) class.education (0.013759) class.synthesis (0.011254)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by Research Press of the National Research Council of Canada. The support of the editor, Dr. Dana Vanier, is gratefully appreciated.


Bilek J, Hartmann D

Development of an agent-based workbench supporting collaborative structural design

Abstract: This paper presents an approach towards an adaptive, expandable, decentralized and flexible workbench supporting complex structural design processes using multiagent systems technology. Primarily, this novel workbench aims at assisting design experts according to their specific tasks during a project work and furthermore detecting typical deficiencies and conflicts that may occur in collaboration, cooperation and coordination between the various structural designers. The workbench consists of a set of software agents, that are designed and modeled to integrate typical organizational characteristics of a project work, engineering software and data structures in terms of product models. According to the analysis of structural design processes a theoretical concept of three agent-based submodels is suggested: i) the agent-based collaboration model, ii) the agent-based engineering software integration model and iii) the agent-based product model. In this paper we focus on the agent-based collaboration model. The three models are connected by an agent-based process model. The fundamental solution concepts of this approach are to be substantiated by analyzing the design process of an arched bridge, already erected, as a reference.

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Full text: content.pdf (212,734 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2003 (browse)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the University of Auckland. The assistance of the editor who provided the full texts and the structured metadata, Dr. Robert Amor, is gratefully appreciated.


Brien M J O', Al-Biqami N M

Survey of information technology and the structure of the Saudi Arabian construction industry

Abstract: While technical advances are the main drivers in the adoption of Information Technology (IT) in the construction industry, such advances can only be incorporated through a due appreciation of the structures of the industry. Earlier work has shown how the organisational structure of the industry is in large part determined by the nature of the economic and financial exchanges which takes place. New IT initiatives succeed to the degree to which they are congruent with those financial exchanges. In short, economic benefits must accrue. This in turn begs the questions: who benefits, and how are the benefits to be distributed amongst the various parties? The answers to these questions provide the basis for establishing a successful implementation. This short-term 'economic benefits' argument does not, however, preclude a more substantial organisational shift at some later point. In this paper we provide an analysis of the economic structure of the construction industry in Saudi Arabia, and in particular the degree to which IT has established itself in that industrial sector. The Saudi Arabian Construction industry is one of the largest in the world, being devoted to the provision of a large-scale infrastructure. However, in many of its characteristics it is unique. It is these elements of uniqueness which make this particular industry interesting: the uniqueness poses new problems for the developers of novel and innovative IT construction systems. Yet despite these aggregate figures and anecdotal facts the small-scale nature of the construction industry has been poorly researched and documented. The analysis of the economic and organisational structure of the Saudi Arabian IT construction industry provided in this paper provides the fine-grained matrix within which new IT systems can be built. The paper describes an ongoing study of the Saudi Arabian construction industry. It draws together existing facts on the industry and new ones which are being elicited though a large survey of the industry. Finally, it is envisioned that tentative conclusions will be provided on the economic and organisational structure of the industry.

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Full text: content.pdf (82,648 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1999 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.economic (0.028723) class.strategies (0.014463) class.roadmaps (0.014116)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the Research Press of the National Research Council of Canada. The support of the editors, particularly Dr. Dana Vanier, is gratefully appreciated.


Chiu Liu, and Zhongren Wang

Computing The Design Number Of Lanes On Freeway Curves By Integrating Theory, Road Geometry, And Vehicle Characteristics

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Full text: content.pdf (536,908 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2006 (browse)
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Cox S, Perdomo J, Thabet W

Construction field data inspection using pocket PC technology

Abstract: Construction projects are characterized by the large amount of data that needs to be collected, processed, and exchanged among the different project participants. Collection of construction inspection data, in particular, allows field personnel to monitor project performance with the ultimate goal of improving productivity and lowering costs. Current practices for recording and filing of field inspection data are mainly paper-based. This manual process using paper forms is a time consuming and tedious task. Not only is the clerical expense of this process very high, but also the organization and review of the information commands an inordinate amount of time by a project manager, of which most managers posses very little. Continuous evolvement and improvements of the Pocket PC and its hardware/software technologies, including more powerful processors, smaller storage devices, higher quality displays, and wide availability of third party application software, have made it possible for these devices to become stand alone systems with powerful functional capabilities. Because of their high mobility characteristics due to their small size and light weight, Pocket PCs can be used in the construction field to perform various tasks including recording of inspection data. This paper describes an application for automating the collection process of field inspection data using Pocket PCs. The application allows for recording, processing, and distribution of quality compliance inspection information of various tasks performed in the field. The application is developed using HandBaseTM database software from DDH Software, Inc. and is implemented using a Compaq iPAQ H3870 Pocket PC.

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Full text: content.pdf (451,415 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2002 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.man-man (0.013437) class.software-software (0.008948) class.store (0.005362)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by the Aarhus School of Architecture, Denmark. The assistnace of the editor, Prof. Kristian Agger, is gratefully aprecciated.


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