Virtual Reality (VR) experience in construction implies visual simulation of digital 3-dimensional BIM models of building structure, environment, and elements using head-mounted VR devices along with VR software. The interactive process of VR technology allows tracking movement inside the virtual world. VR is one of the most popular and widely accepted technologies in Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) that can solve some big problems in the construction industry.
As the world is being more technology-centric the Architectural Structural and Construction (AEC) industry is in desperate need of modernization. Although the construction industry is much digitized now since last few decades and hence, equipment, safety practices and building materials have gone through significant advancements. However, few works are still inefficient, undesirable and hazardous to new professionals. Construction giants are very much aware about the challenges related to the industry and hence opted VDC services including Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), 3D Construction Printing, Drone Surveying, 3D Laser Scanning, IoT etc., to ease the difficulties.
As per a Research Journal published by MDPI “Over 98% of construction projects incur cost overruns and delays. Many projects experience rework, costing 5% to 20% of the total contract value . The main causes of rework include lack of communication among different construction parties, lack of adequate visualization capability to recognize design conflicts, and lack of support for advanced communication technologies”.
Incorporating advanced technology like VDC in construction is necessary to stay in immersive AEC industry. As per the survey report published by ResearchGate to identify the limitations of implementing AR/VR technologies are: “21% of the respondents mentioned that lack of budget, 17% indicated upper management’s lack of understanding of these technologies, and 17% of the respondents mentioned design teams’ lack of knowledge as the main”.
Here we will discuss further, how Virtual Reality (VR) in construction helping construction industry to handle modern building difficulties.
Modeling and Design Issues
Mitigates Time Consumption
- The Problem: 3D modeling of a building structure or, elements is a time-consuming process during the conceptual designing stage. Architects and modelers spent a lot of time to finalize model as they have to go through multiple revisions to identify the exact level of detailing (LOD) required to generate the precise model.
- The Resolution: During the initial preconstruction stage, when the modeling of a building or, components are prepared, incorporating interactive options for VR experience the project stakeholders get clear insight of the building design. Realtime basis modelers, architects, designers, engineers can test revisions without wasting a lot of time in remodeling as per latest revisions. VR technology eliminates the requirement of site visit, or, material reference as it provides realistic simulation to experience “Construction Rehearsal”.
- The Problem: One of the most challenging facts of construction industry is collaboration between architect and other project team after the designing stage. This is why 3D design models are prepared either for presentation or, for testing purpose. Therefore, using this model for BIM modeling and construction takes more time.
- The Resolution: With the help of VR technology and its wide range of functionalities the 3D design model is utilized and modified by any of the project stakeholders to revise the model for construction use. Instead of depending upon one team or, team member VR software enhances smoother project execution allowing better team coordination and collaboration with an immediate effect.
On-site Construction Issue
Eliminates On-site Training Risk
- The Problem: As we all are aware of the fact that construction professionals are being trained to identify and mitigate risks on the construction site and follow safety measures. However, the training can be risky to new construction workers as the training includes practical experience and therefore it often results in dangerous experience not similar with the actual workplace.
- The Resolution: Construction Training integrated with VR results in zero percent chance of physical hazard or, risk. Construction professionals during the VR training session can interact with the virtual objects, equipment, and other features related to their workplace. They can experience reality inside the virtual world. The training can take place anywhere not even requiring any necessity of equipment and professional set-ups.
Improves Team Collaboration
- The Problem: Onsite project team collaboration is one of the biggest problems that a construction project faces. There are several reasons behind the communication gap like blaming each other, professional incompetence, lack of attention to project documents etc.
- The Resolution: VR integrated 3D models are best referred to construction specialists to provide the insight of building structures and elements from inside and out. The realtime visualization allows project team to work collaboratively as the changes or, revisions take place immediately.
Management Related Issue
Material Cost Saving
- The Problem: While executing construction project there exist some wastage of material which is difficult to reduce or, eliminate along with making a profit even after paying wages to construction workers and getting other work done. Owning to lack of proper material management the construction work ends up with material unused and waste whereas some manpower remains idle at times.
- The Resolution: Utilizing VR integrated BIM technology construction team calculates the exact estimation of material that contains the number and type of materials before buying them. Moreover, the VR simulation helps in identifying upcoming onsite risk before the actual construction take place.
Effective Project Presentation
- The Problem: Project presentation is an important step to get approval for project proceeding and arranging of financial support. Even, amazing project concept and design fall through if it is not visually impressive. Clients and investors are always looking for detailed and unique project presentations in order to go ahead.
- The Resolution: 3D model with VR experience can represent any project in a much impressive way. This provides a better understanding and visualization of the project concept, hence the chances of getting approval from clients and investors support increases. This is a reason behind VR being widely used in Real-estate industry as well.
Therefore, Virtual Reality (VR) is a cutting-edge technology that is revolutionizing the construction business by overcoming long-standing issues. Unlike 3D modeling, VR technology puts the user right inside the virtual world, allowing them to fully immerse.
Tejjy Inc., having over 15 years of experience in the construction world can provide your BIM integrated VR services from our VR studio. Being an ISO certified company in the USA we have adopted cutting-edge technologies to improvise project execution, delivery and customer experience.