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Addison A,O’Hare W-T,Kassem M,Dawood N

The importance of engaging engineering and construction learners in virtual worlds and serious games

Abstract: The engineering and construction industries require their workforce to undertake complex learning and training activities. Exposing new employees, graduates, or apprentices to these environments could endanger their safety and the safety of those working with them. On site education and training also requires an investment of time from skilled individuals and companies. Problems accessing environments, such as construction sites, heavy plants or chemical manufacturers, are substantially heightened by the need to risk assess and comply with Health and Safety legislation making the traditional “hands on” and “shadowing” approaches to training and education more complicated than in the past. These difficulties are also compounded by changes to the geographical locations (e.g. distance learning, on site) of those studying to join these career paths or progress within them. Therefore, educational institutions and trainers must consider how to deliver this skill based learning for both those with access to academic premises and those learning at a distance. New technologies such as serious games are one of the solutions being explored. This paper undertakes an analysis of safety issues and safety training and learning methods relating to the construction industry. The paper takes its start point from a Health and Safety Executive commissioned report in 2003 (Hide et al, 2003) and questions if sufficient improvements in safety have been achieved within the construction industry since its publication. Then, the paper investigates the development of education and training that meets the necessary reality and complexity of engineering and construction sectors and the ability of serious games to provide timely and accessible training to achieve competency within these sectors.

Keywords: Competency,learning,safety,serious games,training,virtual worlds

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Full text: content.pdf (579,452 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: convr:2013 (browse)
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Ahmed V, Mahdjoubi L, Feng X, Leach M

The learning of CAD for construction: technical abilities or visual?

Abstract: The increasing demands of the construction industry for individuals with good IT skills add continuous pressures on higher education to improve their methods of teaching. CAD training, as an important part of IT training for construction students, is becoming an essential part of the curriculum in most built environment schools. However, general CAD training is mostly concerned with providing students with technical skills rather than the initial ability of spatial visualisation. Indeed, existing training methods of CAD applications, do not take into consideration students? learning styles, and the differences in their spatial visualisation abilities. Considering that CAD students need to perform various activities within CAD applications to develop an understanding of building concepts and components, their spatial visualisation abilities and their learning style, remain the main barriers. This paper identifies the learning strategies required to assist with the learning of 3D modelling and describes a new approach adopted to examine students' Special Visualisation Skills. The paper also describes innovative e-learning approaches developed to reinforce students' learning of 3D CAD, tracking their progress and highlighting qualitative measures of their effectiveness.

Keywords: 3D modelling, e-learning in construction, CAL, CAA

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Full text: content.pdf (595,899 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: itaec:2004 (browse)
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B de Vries

Building management simulation center

Abstract: Introduction to the BMSC In the Building Management Simulation Center new and experienced construction managers are trained. The center is unique because of the use of a virtual building site that can be inspected by the trainees. The actual status of the building and of the building materials and equipment on the building site is simulated by the system dependent on the trainee’s actions. The main part of the center is the simulation hall. Here, ten cabins are located with a view on a large parabolic projection screen. The trainee has to execute tasks in the cabin in an environment that is familiar to him/her. On the projection screen the building under construction can be viewed and it can be inspected by navigation through the full-scale model. Similar VR based training systems can be found in the aircraft industry, the automotive industry [http://www.ttsl.co.uk/home.htm] en de shipbuilding industry [http://thor.sv.vt.edu/crane/]. These examples inspired the initiators of the BMSC to investigate if the same methodology could be used in the building industry. Building site activity patterns Construction process simulation research has mainly been focused on the development of a construction planning analysis tool [e.g. V.R. Kamat, J.C. Martinez in proceedings of CIT2000]. In the BMSC though, interaction between the construction manager and the building on the building site will steer the construction process simulation. Investigations on the building site and discussions with experienced construction managers learned that they work in fixed patterns. A pattern consisting of a list of activities is called a transition type. These transition types describe all kinds of procedures that a construction manager performs to fulfill a specific tasks (e.g. ordering of new material). Transition types also take into account actions required to perform corrections beforehand or afterwards. For a specific case the transitions were entered into the system. The transitions were deduced from the construction managers that had worked on that building project when it was actually built. For the training purposes every possible situation the trainee can end up with has to be covered by the transitions. The interactive 3D training system The trainee’s actions are logged by a kind of Electronic Data Management System. All documents that are created during a training session are stored in the system. The system itself also contains project information that can be consulted. Finally the system offers an interface to communicate with the other participants in the project. After the training session that consists of the execution of a set of tasks, the system has stored all actions, their order and the produced documents. These data are compared with the predefined transitions for the case that was used. The document contents are compared with the predefined activity results. With this method it is easy to detect if the trainee missed certain activities in a transition and if the information is consistent. Finally, a visual feedback can be created be regeneration the 3D model in the VR environment in accordance with the trainee’s actions. The 3D model will show has far the building could have been built successfully. The learning effect After the training session the trainee will be confronted with the (possible) mismatch between has own actions and the preferred actions following from the predefined transitions. Evidently this is discussed during the evaluation after the training. Recognition of the right transition by the trainee to solve a specific task is considered one of the major learning effects of a BMSC training. Paper Outline In the paper the software architecture of the system will be explained. The activity patterns and the management of the system are discussed in more detail. A layout of the building where the BMSC is hosted is presented. Finally some examples of the training sessions will illustrate how the BMSC operates in practice and an overview will be presented of the first experiences.

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Full text: content.pdf (1,053,282 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2001 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.deployment (0.027827) class.man-software (0.018630) class.communication (0.013308)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by CSIR Building and Construction Technology. The assistance of the editors, Mr. Gustav Coetzee and Mr. Frances Boshoff, is gratefully appreciated.


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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C McCartney, L Kiroff

Factors affecting the uptake of BIM in the Auckland Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry

Abstract: Building Information Modeling (BIM) is seen as the next paradigm shift in the building design and construction industry since the move from traditional drafting to 2D computer aided design systems. Although BIM has been available for a number of years worldwide, its adoption and use in the New Zealand, and especially Auckland Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry has been relatively limited.The aim of this research is to explore the factors affecting the uptake of BIM in the Auckland market by incorporating the views of various architecture, engineering and construction firms. This study is based on a qualitative research methodology. A number of semi-structured interviews, using a questionnaire guide, were conducted with industry professionals from the architecture, structural engineering, services engineering, and construction contractor industry sectors to gain an insight into their current use of BIM and identify what benefits and barriers they encountered in its use and implementation.The findings of this research showed that most industry sectors are currently using BIM as a three dimensional tool for coordinating the various design disciplines, as well as for 3D clash detection and 2D documentation production. Other reasons for BIM use included producing 3D and 4D visualizations and virtual walkthroughs to help non-technical people understand the design intent. Although the literature describes training and cost of implementation as major factors affecting the uptake of BIM, most of the research participants downplayed these issues, explaining that adopting BIM was a commercial decision made to stay ahead of their competitors, and that the extra training involved actually improved the skill base of their organizations. This study concludes that to progress with the use of BIM, a truly integrated and collaborative approach must be adopted in order to achieve gains in coordination, productivity, cost management, and overall project outcomes.

Keywords: BIM, AEC industry, 3D modeling, 4D visualization, Survey

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Full text: content.pdf (194,682 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2011 (browse)
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Carozza L,Bosché F,Abdel-Wahab M

Image-based localization for an indoor VR/AR construction training system

Abstract: Virtual /Augmented Reality (VR/AR) technologies have been increasingly used in recent years to support different areas of the construction industry. Their simulation capabilities can enable different construction stakeholders to evaluate the impact of their choices not only on the built environment, but also with regard to the correct execution of operational procedures. Training providers, such as Further Education (FE) colleges, can also enhance their trainee’s experience through the simulation of realistic construction contexts whilst eliminating health and safety risks. Current approaches for the simulation of learning environments in Construction, such as Virtual Learning Environment (VLEs), provide limited degree of interactivity during the execution of real working tasks. Whilst immersive approaches (e.g. CAVE-based) can provide enhanced visualization of simulated environments, they require complex and expensive set-up with limited practical interaction in real construction projects context. This paper outlines a localization approach employed in the development of an Immersive Environment (IE) for Construction training, cheaper than CAVE-based approaches and which has the potential to be rolled-out to the FE sector for maximizing the benefit to the construction industry. Pose estimation of the trainee is achieved by processing images acquired by a monocular camera integral with his head while performing tasks in a virtual construction environment. Realistic perception of the working environment and its potentially hazardous conditions can thus be consistently delivered to the trainee through immersive display devices (e.g. goggles). Preliminary performance of the localization approach is reported in the context of working at heights (which has a wide applicability to a range of construction trades, such as scaffolders and roofers), whilst highlighting the potential benefits for trainees. Current limitations of the localization approach are also discussed suggesting directions for future development.

Keywords: Image-based,localization,VR/AR,construction training

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Full text: content.pdf (836,205 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: convr:2013 (browse)
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Chang L M, Chen P H, Abdelraziq Y

Bridge painting defects recognition using samplying plans and image processing techniques

Abstract: Bridge painting inspection is a time-consuming work that relies on plenty of human visual efforts that are subjective, inefficient, and inaccurate. In order to shorten the inspection / evaluation time and increase the accuracy, two unbiased sampling plans and an automated recognition system were developed with the hope of standardizing and automating the inspection process. The system hybridizes image processing techniques and neural networks, which provide expert knowledge through training, to automatically diagnose the defects on an image. The developed recognition system can process vast number of images instantly and intelligently with simulated human expertise. The detection of rust areas is used to exemplify the recognition system.

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Full text: content.pdf (382,147 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2000 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.analysis (0.041745) class.synthesis (0.010450) class.strategies (0.006286)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by Icelandic Building Research Institute. The assistance of the editor, Mr. Gudni Gudnason, is gratefully appreciated


Chen A,Golparvar-Fard M,Kleiner B

SAVES: a safety training augmented virtuality environment for construction hazard recognition and severity identification

Abstract: One of the most challenging aspects of health and safety (H&S) management for construction sites is ensuring that workers can predict, identify, and respond to potential hazardous conditions before they are exposed. While OSHA addresses the need for enforcement of comprehensive H&S training programs, many safety training programs still do not include hazard recognition or systematic preparations for the avoidance of unsafe conditions. From a scientific standpoint, we currently lack the knowledge of discovering the most efficient training styles for safety and also understanding why and how these styles of training can influence the post-training activities. To address these needs, an Augmented Virtuality(AV) training environment named System for Augmented Virtuality Environment Safety (SAVES) was designed and is presented in this paper. SAVES which integrates a Building Information Model (BIM) with photographs of typical energy sources on a jobsite, allows trainees to control and navigate an avatar within such AV environment. Within the AV environment, the user can conduct a set of interactions with the environment and accomplish multiple instruction and task-based training scenarios. These scenarios include detection of ten types of hazard and/or energy sources at three levels of severity. The energy sources which in SAVES are embedded in forms of 3D elements and 2D imagery are designed to elevate the safety awareness of the users, enable them to predict and identify various types of hazards, and assess their level of severity. To fully document the experience of the users, during each exercise, trainees’ choices, time for decision-making and corresponding prevention plan are documented in the system. The complete process of design, development, implementation and results analysis of SAVES is presented.

Keywords: Safety,Training,Virtual Reality,Hazard Recognition

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Full text: content.pdf (1,048,469 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: convr:2013 (browse)
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Chiu M-L

The Nature of Managing IT and Its Managerial Challenges

Abstract: Management of information technology (IT) is increasingly important for organizations and users at the work environment. This paper, first, introduces the way IT is changing the work environment. Second, failure to integrate IT, building systems and the work environment is addressed as a result of the subdivision of responsibility by professional discipline and poor communications in team decision-making. Third, this paper describes the nature of managing IT, which is a life-cycle activity and a problem-solving business. Furthermore, managing IT requires multi-disciplinary participation in the delivery process. Finally, four managerial challenges are provided for all professions in the field, including to assess what the users need, plan for better systems integration, manage the project delivery process effectively, and use computer aids for education and training.

Keywords: information technology; project delivery process; decision-making; management; computer aids

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Series: w78:1993 (browse)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the National University of Singapore. The assistance of the editors, particularly Prof. Martin Betts, is gratefully appreciated.


Cho-Chien Lu, Shih-Chung Kang, Shang-Hsien Hsieh

SimuSurvey: a computer-based simulator for survey training

Abstract: This paper presents the development of a computer-based simulator for survey training, referred to as SimuSurvey. Because modern survey instruments are usually expensive, difficult to maintain, and sensitive to weather conditions, surveying course instructors often find it difficult to supply sufficient high-quality instruments for the class. Also, the instructors often suffer the need to repeat similar instructions about instrument operations to individual stu-dents; and, lack a good means of recording each student’s learning progress. SimuSurvey was designed to address these issues - for use in survey training in a computer-generated virtual environment at a low cost. The functions cur-rently provided by SimuSurvey include: (1) the visualization of a survey instrument and measurement poles involved in an assigned survey task; (2) the simulation of the control interface of a real surveying instrument; (3) the recording of each student’s performed operations; and (4) design of learning activities for students to practice surveying tasks in a simulated environment. The focus of this paper is on the design and implementation of SimuSurvey. An example is pro-vided to demonstrate the applicability and effectiveness of SimuSurvey to survey training.

Keywords: simulator, survey training, engineering education, virtual reality, augmented reality

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Full text: content.pdf (1,748,371 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2007 (browse)
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