When you think technology in construction, what’s the first thing you think of? Cranes? Bulldozers? Screws? While those are all correct, technology in the construction field is extremely vast. When we’re children, we learn about ‘simple machines’, such as hammers, levers, and others. Now with the internet, a simple machine is an iPad. Construction sites are being digitalized faster than ever, as the online world works faster than we can. So, how does Laux use technology in the field?
We just recently have acquired a drone and are excited to use it for this year’s projects! Our main use for the drone is to capture high quality footage for marketing and journalism purposes. Since construction sites are not open to the public, we want to give you a personal experience to watch us build from start to finish. To see where you’re flying, you can connect the drone to an iPad or another handheld device.
All Site Superintendents are issued an iPad to organize their projects. Superintendents manage multiple jobs at once and must have good time management and communication with all the different teams. The iPad allows them to accomplish this along with other daily tasks, such as updating Procore or filing paperwork.
All of our projects are placed into Procore, a project management software, which was ranked #1 in 2021 by the Construction Technology Report. Procore allows us to view who is all assigned to the project, including subcontractors and owners; superintendents will upload pictures to show progress on site; construction schedules are available to view by all parties; and all documentation of bidding, meeting notes, and others are organized into their designated folders. This software is one of our key pieces to building successful relationships with clients, and projects.
In the office, some Project Managers use CAD, computer-aided design, to create drawings of projects. CAD allows the project team to visualize the project in 2D and 3D, as well as bring more understanding to the client. CAD is crucial to the build as it will include measurements and materials for everything needed for the build. These drawings are then provided to all the subcontractors who are responsible for framing, drywall, windows, and others so they can correctly plan and organize their materials and staff.
LIDAR, short for light detection and ranging, is a highly accurate piece of technology that is used to measure walls, hall lengths, and other desired spaces. This is done by a laser that emits light pulses which reflects to a scanner after bouncing off the surface. The scanner will then process how long it took for the light to come back to a GPS receiver, which then calculates the length. Laux had the opportunity recently to see Great Lakes Stainless use equipment that does this during a kitchen remodel.
Ground Penetrating Radar Systems is highly useful at Laux, and the construction field in its entirety. Similar looking to a stroller, a box is pushed along with ground of the project site. It sends frequencies into the ground which can notify the user what is beneath them. We partner with GPRS LLC to find hidden utility lines, pipes, and other dangerous or important utilities that must be protected or replaced. Their process is less destructive and cost effective as it will limit having to repair unnecessary landscaping issues.
Something one might not think about is the vibrations of a construction site. We all know how noisy a project site can be, but we also want to ensure the ground is secure. Before we began work at GAR Island Park in Eaton Rapids, we monitored the ground vibrations of our heavy equipment before starting to ensure the surrounding buildings and vegetation could withstand the work being done.
Technology will forever be changing, and improving, as well as the construction industry. New ideas for architecture will be developed, and new ways of building from different materials is on the rise. With both areas in our world leading in the same direction, we’re excited to see what the future holds with the relationship between technology and construction. If you’ve enjoyed reading, please share this article to your friends and family by clicking the icons below or leave a comment below!
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