Construction 101: What Exactly is Construction Technology and How Has it Advanced Lately?
When most people think construction, they picture basic tools like hammers, wrenches, etc. But did you know drones, 3D printers, and state of the art software are being used today for construction projects? Here we discuss what defines construction technology and why it’s so important.
If you’re interested in a career that involves construction, or just curious about how the buildings around you came to be, you might wonder: What is construction technology?
Construction technology involves much more than just ladders, hammers, and heavy equipment like cranes. Today’s construction sites use the latest tech to make things run smoothly, improve safety, and more.
Whether you’re involved in the industry or not, the range of technologies is fascinating. In this guide, we’ll break down the latest construction technology examples so you can see just how interesting construction tech is. Keep reading for a newfound appreciation of construction sites!
What Is Construction Technology?
Construction technology is a common type of civil engineering. Even if you know nothing about it, it affects you. You live in, work in, and visit buildings made using this tech. Today’s buildings can be more beautiful, safe, efficient, and versatile thanks to these advancements in tech.
What advancements make modern construction possible, and what does the future hold? Let’s take a look at some of the most promising and exciting construction technologies for the future.
1. Virtual Reality
VR is no longer limited to the gaming industry. Now, construction companies use virtual reality to show stakeholders, owners, and other important people just what buildings will look like while they’re still in the design and planning stages.
When people can have this immersive walk-through before plans get finalized, it’s much easier to make changes that meet expectations as needed.
Virtual reality has been seen as cutting-edge technology until now, but it’s actually becoming mainstream. This allows the planning stage of the construction to be more efficient, resulting in better, safer, higher-quality finished products and more effective marketing.
2. Augmented Reality
Augmented reality takes things one step further from VR. While VR allows people to take a virtual walk-through, AR lets users literally walk through a construction project in progress. It augments the experience with extra real-time information about what the user’s seeing.
Augmented reality is catching on fast, and will soon become even more important to the construction industry.
3. Wearable Tech
Historically, construction was dangerous work. Today, thanks to construction technology, sites are safer than ever. As wearable technology becomes mainstream, construction safety is only going to increase.
Wearables can keep track of where workers are on the site, and provide real-time alerts if there’s a hazard in the area. If someone falls, trips, or slips, the technology will register it and send an alert so help can come as soon as possible.
Wearable products are becoming more common and more affordable, so more companies will adopt them in the near future.
4. Machine Learning
Machine learning and artificial intelligence are modern tech buzzwords, but they aren’t often associated with construction. However, machine learning is also an important part of improving safety in the industry.
For example, some applications can take video data from a site, aggregate it, and analyze it for safety. Progress benchmarks, quality measures, and more can also be noted at the same time.
This artificial intelligence can compile video, photos, and more visual data to see if there are any safety violations. They can also check items to make sure the plans are being followed correctly.
People don’t have to be on the site to quickly find the information they need about it. The visual data also becomes important for marketing purposes.
Of course, prefabrication technology has been around for a long time – so long that it might seem like it hardly counts as construction tech. However, newer tech developments have made prefab benefits more accessible for more projects. Prefab also can be integrated into construction processes in new ways thanks to new tech.
For example, mobile tech gives a window for people to see the whole prefab process. Anyone involved with the project can see what’s being manufactured, what stage the process is in, and when the finished product will get delivered. This improves efficiency and reduces the potential for mistakes.
6. Predictive Analytics
What separates a successful construction business from an unsuccessful one? For the most part, it’s all about how well the company can predict outcomes and manage risk. With predictive analytics, that risk management becomes much simpler.
For example, predictive analytics can take data from suppliers, subcontractors, design plans, and the physical site, and use historical data to analyze the risk. Then, people can easily find the parts of the project with more risk than others and pay closer attention to those areas.
7. Job Site Connection
Construction doesn’t happen all in one place. The site can be large and spread out, and the trailer, site, design office, engineering department, and more all need to be able to communicate with each other.
Delays in communication between these different aspects of the industry can get expensive and frustrating. Luckily, new tech is making job sites more connected than ever before. New communication tech allows everyone to have real-time access to the latest documents, drawings, and more.
This can almost completely reduce mistakes from miscommunications, and rework or change orders can be almost eliminated.
8. 3D Printing
3D printing is great for countless industries, and construction is one of them. In fact, new items can be constructed on-site using 3D printers.
This tech is often thought of when it comes to making prototypes and miniatures. While those things are useful in construction as well, the potential for custom-building parts of the actual project is even more promising for the future.
Where Construction Technology Is Headed
Faster, safer, and more efficient – construction technology is revolutionizing the way job sites work. Although people may still think of new cranes and bulldozers when they ask “What is construction technology?” the actual answer is much more exciting.
Of course, all the technology in the world does little good without the right place to use it. Looking for the most reliable construction office trailers available? Check out our inventory here.