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Considering AR For Construction?

09/03/2021

Studio Victoria

4 minutes

After discussing Augmented Reality and how it can be applied to the Construction Industry to provide you with several benefits. In this article, we will help you with what you need to consider when choosing Augmented Reality for Construction by answering the following questions: What are the purposes of implementing Augmented Reality into the Construction Industry? And What should you look for in a company when considering implementing Augmented Reality for Construction? Keep reading to find how to get the most out of Augmented Reality for Construction to help you #ONEUPYOURBUSINESS!

WHAT ARE THE PURPOSES OF IMPLEMENTING AUGMENTED REALITY INTO THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY?

Leading on from a previous article, AR for Construction, we detailed that Augmented Reality (AR) can be incorporated in all stages of construction: before any building takes place, during construction, and even after, explaining there's no right or wrong time to implement AR into your construction projects.

However, understanding what you want to get out of adopting AR can allow you to incorporate it at a stage that would be best suited for your project. Therefore, knowing why you want to adopt AR into your construction projects will not only help you choose the best company that can suit your needs but also what kind of additional data you may potentially need to incorporate. And so below, we list several purposes of why you may want to implement AR into construction:

1. TO IMPROVE PROJECT PLANNING AND GET ENHANCED VISUALISATIONS

You can use AR merged with BIM to showcase completed buildings that haven't been physically built yet, offering all relevant parties such as clients and architectures a visual representation of the end product in great detail. The value of having real-time visualisations and easy access to insights allows you to ensure that your project aligns with your client's requirements and enables any changes to be made before any construction takes place.

A great example of why you may choose to implement AR within the planning stage is to help you cut down on costs and provide less disturbance. For example, if you're building a hospital, AR and BIM enable you to present designs virtually, in a data-rich manner with all the relevant information you need without stopping doctors and nurses from working.

2. MONITORING A CONSTRUCTION SITE AND EQUIPMENT

Augmented Reality can allow you to monitor a building site and equipment. Detecting where equipment is and if it's in use and monitoring the building site can increase safety as it decreases the risk of errors, tracks progress, and can detect any real-time issues, helping to lower construction costs and save time.

3. INCREASE SAFETY

Safety can be a challenge for the Construction Industry; however, with AR, workers can use wearable devices like smart glasses as safety equipment to reduce risks and allow inspectors to work more efficiently.

Adopting AR technology can enhance on-site job operations as inspectors can track the environment, compare what is being built against the BIM model, recognise quickly any concerns and alert the relevant people instantly, capture photos on demand, get instant access to information that can be easily shared, take accurate measurements, and so on, helping inspectors work more cost-effectively, safely, and save time.

4. GET ACCURATE MEASUREMENTS

You can obtain accurate measurements and determine precise dimensions by combining AR with BIM. Having accurate data can allow you to decide what materials are needed and how many hours of labour are required, and so on. Therefore, getting accurate measurements can help the Construction Industry save resources, money, and time and help architects and designers efficiently plan design options.

5. PROVIDE TRAINING

When it comes to training, a lot of machinery is involved, especially in the building process requiring workers to indulge in many hours of training. AR is a great way to reduce training costs and downtime as AR headsets can enable trainees to receive real-time instructions and act accordingly, all whilst creating a safer training environment as staff can work with equipment at reduced risk.

6. SUPPORT UNDERGROUND CONSTRUCTION

When working underground, there are potential risks of hitting a gas pipe or damaging underground utilities. AR technology can offer layers of underground information such as hidden elements, buried cables, tranches, and pipelines.

WHAT SHOULD YOU LOOK FOR IN A COMPANY WHEN CONSIDERING AUGMENTED REALITY FOR CONSTRUCTION?

Now that you understand how AR can be applied to your projects and have gathered some thoughts of how AR can benefit you, it's time to discuss what to look for in a company when choosing AR solutions.

Producing highly detailed and comprehensive Augmented Reality applications requires expert knowledge and cutting-edge technology, making it crucial to hire professionals who have experience and permission to be handling various equipment. Here we outline in-depth what you should look for in a company when considering incorporating AR:

WHAT EQUIPMENT DO THEY USE?

To ensure you will be getting data-rich Augmented Reality applications, you must make sure the company uses the very best equipment to not get amateur results. Hiring a company that uses industry-specific technology can give your projects a fully enriched user experience and 2D and 3D capabilities.

Therefore, a company that uses various specialist equipment is more likely to offer your AR applications extra information layers as they can embed further information to help you enhance your clients, workers, and collaborators experiences. Equipment to consider could be drones, thermal imaging cameras, photography and videography such as 4K anamorphic, aquatic filming, aerial filming, 360-degree video.

DO THEY SUPPORT BIM?

In the UK, including other countries, BIM Level 2 is mandatory for government construction projects. It is crucial that the AR application you will receive can be integrated with BIM. As we stated previously, AR and BIM can allow you to track your progress, meet clients requirements and increase collaboration. Find out more about why you should be implementing BIM Level 2 and beyond today by clicking here.

ARE THEY FULLY INSURED AND APPROVED?

You should establish that the company you are considering to hire for your AR application is covered and can provide you with proof of Public Liability coverage that is the minimum of £5 million, including permissions to operate specific equipment such as drones.

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