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CRL Management talks about how 3D Laser Technology is making the construction industry safer

Newer technologies such as sensors and 3D lasers are making it easier for contractors to carry out smarter and safer building practices.

Insurers should be aware of where the industry is headed in terms of construction safety technology implementation and how new devices can improve both the construction sites themselves and worker safety.

Imagine being in the centre of a large office tower, with the roof, framing, and exterior walls all completed, when you notice something wrong with the measurements for the support beam. Instead of requiring the engineers and architect to investigate, and potentially slowing down the project, you use a 3D laser scanner that quickly confirms that the design measurements are correct.

This is an example of the challenges faced by contractors today and how the construction site of the future will use data and technology to help them work smarter and more safely.

Smarter Building

When construction companies use an architect or engineer’s plans, there is always the risk that measurements could be inaccurate. For example, when altering a warehouse for use as a restaurant, accuracy is important. Moving water and gas lines and designing a kitchen by hand all have a high potential for error, which could cost contractors time and money. If a measure is off by even a few inches, high rebuild costs could arise. According to statistics, rework costs can account for up to 5% of the entire construction budget.

3D laser technology creates a precise model of a construction site at various points of the scale, including air, space, and objects. It is so accurate that the site is measured down to the last millimetre.

In addition to providing detailed and quick measurements, laser technology can confirm whether they are correct. It compares the architect’s design to the actual building, creating an overlay of the measurements and indicating any places where misalignment is detected.

Contractors who want to build with both accuracy and speed use 3D laser technology to detect potential issues in real time, changing the way that construction companies approach a build. A report issued by MarketsandMarkets stated that the construction safety technology market is expected to grow at a rapid rate for the construction and architecture industries between the present day and 2023.

Future construction safety technology applications fall primarily into two categories:

  • Using a 3D laser scanner with a drone that can scale large buildings in minutes while confirming measurement accuracy. A task that is normally daunting and risky becomes much safer.
  • Augmented reality and virtual reality will be used by contractors to scan the physical building against the design, creating a virtual image that workers can use to see where pipes run or an augmented reality visual where engineers, architects, inspectors, and even homeowners can monitor progress in real-time. These 3D scans can be overlaid against the BIM (Building Information Modeling) design to provide an instant comparison of the original design and current build.

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