A virtual environment for the design and simulated construction of prefabricated buildings
Murray, N, Fernando, T and Aouad, G 2003, 'A virtual environment for the design and simulated construction of prefabricated buildings' , Virtual Reality, 6 (4) , pp. 244-256.
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The construction industry has acknowledged that its current working practices are in need of substantial improvements in quality and efficiency and has identified that computer modelling techniques and the use of prefabricated components can help reduce times, costs, and minimise defects and problems of on-site construction. This paper describes a virtual environment to support the design and construction processes of buildings from prefabricated components and the simulation of their construction sequence according to a project schedule. The design environment can import a library of 3-D models of prefabricated modules that can be used to interactively design a building. Using Microsoft Project, the construction schedule of the designed building can be altered, with this information feeding back to the construction simulation environment. Within this environment the order of construction can be visualised using virtual machines. Novel aspects of the system are that it provides a single 3-D environment where the user can construct their design with minimal user interaction through automatic constraint recognition and view the real-time simulation of the construction process within the environment. This takes this area of research a step forward from other systems that only allow the planner to view the construction at certain stages, and do not provide an animated view of the construction process.
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