Like many other branches of industry, construction is highly receptive to new technology trends.
While the basic technology and building methods have inevitably changed over the years, what separates the most successful companies in the niche is their readiness to adopt modern innovations and use them the best they can. If you are someone who is considering a construction management course with the purpose of running your own business, knowing the tools of the day and the way they can be used can set you apart from your competitors early on. Needless to say, learning new skills doesn’t have to stop the day you’re granted a builder’s licence. The technologies and methods are constantly evolving, and while some of those innovations may look relatively uncommon today, tomorrow’s projects’ completion and meeting clients’ expectations might depend on modern solutions you’ve adopted before the others.
Greater equipment autonomy
Driverless vehicles are definitely a big thing today. And while Australian legislators are preparing a new set of regulations for intelligent transport systems, for construction and mining industries, such developments are becoming essential. Machinery that is able to operate without anyone in the cabin not only reduces the possibility of human error, but provides greater accuracy and efficiency of work on site. Greater equipment autonomy also works towards preventing or minimising downtime and process disruptions. While a flat tyre or broken track could slow down the work, new solutions like flat free vehicle tyres or solid tracks are slowly becoming a trend which is surely to become standard in the future. While the onset of robotics has been relatively slow in the industry in the last few years, nowadays, things are changing. Although still in its infancy, automated solutions can get the job done faster, safer and cheaper. A brilliant example is MIT’s Digital Construction Platform that uses 3D printing to create form structures.
Along with labour and equipment costs, fuel expenses are not an insignificant cost in many construction operations. Many sectors of the industry are becoming more and more dependent on electric and hybrid equipment – a trend that will inevitably spread into more segments as the engineering capabilities and knowledge continue to develop. Companies which sell or rent construction equipment are well aware of this, and try to get ahead of the competition by offering machinery with greater fuel economy and lower emission. As a leader in the provision of construction equipment, this company, for example has lately specialized in crane hire in Melbourne, pointing out the low emissions, low impact and reduced noise of their products. Also, energy consumption can be reduced through developing machines with lower rolling resistance and weight. In order to achieve the required output of energy to lift, dig or transept, electric and hybrid equipment needs to become lighter, but not at the expense of the performance.
Use of drones
A recent innovation that has a lot of potential in working hand-in-hand with Building Information Modelling (BIM) software, remote controlled drones give engineer teams the ability to get a fast bird’s eye view of the site and help in the design process. While their increased use has stirred much controversy in some industries, businesses all over are finding new ways to use these flying helpers – from mail and package delivery to land surveying and protecting endangered species. Data collected by drones can be used by construction managers to analyse the project’s progress. While today not many courses offer training required to operate tools such as BIN and construction drones, having someone with such expertise on your team can be a great addition and asset to your building company.
The construction trends we can expect to see gaining momentum in 2018 will definitely focus on technology, with the latest equipment creating a direct or indirect effect on the industry. The equipment has evolved through using less fuel, automation tech and becoming more autonomous and reliable.