Automating road construction planning with a specific-domain simulation system

N. N. (Nashwan) Dawood, S. (Serafim) Castro

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    Abstract

    Road construction projects are very expensive, unpredictable and highly influenced by unpredictable factors, like weather, type of soil, environmental issues, and other factors. This has led to difficulties in developing accurate construction plans and modelling the construction operation using a traditional simulation system. In this context, the aim of this research is to create a knowledge driven road construction simulation system to assist project managers in generating accurate and reliable road construction plans. Road construction operations and rules governing the actions and interactions of the resources have been identified, developed, classified and modelled through a comprehensive analysis of 145 road construction projects. For every road construction operation (activity) a computer-based template for atomic models was defined and developed. The models encapsulate productivity equations and factors influencing the productivity of resources and automating the scheduling of works. Also, the models provide a means for evaluating several resource allocation alternatives under a wide range of scenarios. A real life case study was modelled to identify applicability, accuracy and usefulness of the developed simulation system and results are presented in this paper. The study concluded that the system generated fast and accurate productivity and unit cost of road activities to develop a construction schedule of the road construction project.
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalJournal of Information Technology in Construction
    Volume1
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 2009

    Bibliographical note

    Road construction projects are very expensive, unpredictable and highly influenced by unpredictable factors, like weather, type of soil, environmental issues, and other factors. This has led to difficulties in developing accurate construction plans and modelling the construction operation using a traditional simulation system. In this context, the aim of this research is to create a knowledge driven road construction simulation system to assist project managers in generating accurate and reliable road construction plans. Road construction operations and rules governing the actions and interactions of the resources have been identified, developed, classified and modelled through a comprehensive analysis of 145 road construction projects. For every road construction operation (activity) a computer-based template for atomic models was defined and developed. The models encapsulate productivity equations and factors influencing the productivity of resources and automating the scheduling of works. Also, the models provide a means for evaluating several resource allocation alternatives under a wide range of scenarios. A real life case study was modelled to identify applicability, accuracy and usefulness of the developed simulation system and results are presented in this paper. The study concluded that the system generated fast and accurate productivity and unit cost of road activities to develop a construction schedule of the road construction project.

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