New technologies are constantly changing the construction landscape. Drones now make it possible to survey and map a site with ease, and at a lower cost. Smartphones and tablets make on-the-go communication a breeze. Digital blueprint apps and other software make it possible to map out a project ahead of time like never before. Even the use of robots seems to be on the horizon.
Technologies such as these have helped to push the construction industry forward. What was once one of the slowest growing sectors has now become one of the fastest growing industries. New technologies and advancements continue to help it grow and evolve. Here are just a few of the technologies that are helping to shape today’s construction site:
1). Tablets and Blueprint Apps
Where an onsite office was once necessary in order to hold the many blueprints and other documents that contractors needed on site, tablets and blueprint apps are now taking over. These devices allow access to important information right from the field. They can be used to look for possible obstacles that may need to be addressed, which can help to improve safety.
Tablets and smartphones can also be used to communicate in real time with all of the members of a construction team, even if they are not all in the field at the same time. Contractors can place orders or send emails without leaving the site, which saves not only time, but money as well.
2). Safety Equipment
A variety of new technologies are helping to improve safety and health conditions on worksites. Advanced versions of traditional gear, including headsets, safety classes, and clothing, are now being made even safer, thanks to improved designs and materials. They are helping to make safety and health regulations, which may have previously been overlooked more often, a part of standard procedures.
More advanced technologies like drone and stationary cameras are also helping to improve safety. They not only help to monitor conditions on the worksite from new angles that would have previously been difficult to reach, but they can also help to prevent theft and security breaches
3). Advanced Task Management Software
Construction management software has changed a lot over the years, especially since the growth and development of the internet. New versions help not only to increase productivity, but also to track progress and organize the entire construction team. It can be used for billing and as a time clock as well.
Other technologies, such as Building Information Management, or BIM, allow contractors and engineers to create 3D building plans. These can then be integrated into the construction schedule, which can help to make time estimates more accurate. They can also help to improve onsite safety, because these technologies also allow for many pieces to be pre-fabricated and constructed offsite, which means less work is being done in possibly dangerous conditions.
While often overlooked when discussing specific technologies that are influencing the construction sector, the Internet has revolutionized the industry in many ways. GPS, laser-based survey equipment, and construction management software now allow for more precision in a variety of areas. They also make many tasks that were previously time consuming manual activities to become automated, which helps to save time, resources, and money.
Engineers and contractors can also use many internet-enabled features to monitor safety before a job is even begun. They can look ahead to find risk areas, in order to reduce worker injury and improve the job site from the start. On the construction site, the Internet allows for communication in real time with members of the team who are located out of the field.
5). Cameras and Drones
One of the most recent technological advancements are drones, which are changing the face of surveying and security in exciting new ways. Drones are being used to map out construction sites, because they can reach places that humans and traditional machinery can’t. Drone footage, as it becomes even more detailed, can then be used in creating more accurate blueprints. This makes for increased efficiency as well, which often means time and money saved.
6). Computer-Aided Design
Computer-Aided Design, or CAD, now allows contractors to start a job even before the plan is completed. This allows for construction projects to begin faster, and of course, to get finished faster. The CAD system looks at possible issues that may arise, to help reduce errors, and can help to reduce errors, which means less time spend off-schedule and a reduced risk of going off-budget.
These technologies, though they are considered to be state-of-the-art at this time, will likely be changed or replaced in coming years, because new inventions are constantly being developed. The construction industry will always be changing, with exciting new developments constantly changing the way that work gets completed and safety or health regulations are handled.