Computer Integrated Design & Construction (Archived)

RT-025 Topic Summary
RT 025


Computer Integrated Design and Construction for the purposes of this research focuses on the implementation of 3D CAD modeling as a tool to improve integrated design and construction. Opportunities for 3D modeling are identified in terms of demonstrated and potential benefits and challenges to implementation. Approaches for implementation are discussed in order to permit CII member companies to judge for themselves the usefulness and the readiness of 3D modeling for their applications. The research presented is intended to answer basic questions dealing with the following topics:

•    The technology
•    Opportunities 
•    Implementation approaches

The maximum value-added benefit of a 3D modeling system is obtained when it is applied all the way through a project, especially when it is used at the construction end for constructability and maintainability. The biggest improvements will be derived by coordinating activities within an integrated process rather than automating individual activities within the existing fragmented design/construct process.


Key Findings and Implementation Tools

1 : 3D Modeling

This research provides a framework for the identification, justification, and implementation of 3D Modeling in order that many types and sizes of firms can benefit from CII experiences. More effective communication can help participants (owners through constructors) understand better their role in the overall process and how their efforts interact with those of other participants. The 3D Model can, therefore, play a significant role in achieving U.S. construction industry goals related to reducing project costs and improving project schedules. (SD-104, p. 2)

Reference: (SD-104)

2 : 3D Modeling Definition

The term 3D modeling, as discussed in this document, refers to the use of computer hardware along with analysis/design packages, databases, and graphics software for a three-dimensional geometric representation of a facility and attributes associated with its design, engineering, construction, and operation. (SD-104, p. 6)
Reference: (SD-104)

3 : Opportunities

The CII Integrated Design and Construction Task Force have identified where 3D modeling has been applied at the construction site, what successes have been achieved, and what are promising applications. Several examples of application opportunities are listed below: (SD-104, p. 20)

  • Engineer/Constructor Design Reviews
  • Construction Sequencing
  • Safety Assessment
Reference: (SD-104)

4 : Integrated Design and Construction

Specialists in different disciplines, e.g., designers and constructors, can examine and view a 3D Model at various levels of abstraction (detail). This helps improve communication and reduce barriers between the upstream (design and engineering) and the downstream (construction) personnel and processes. Specifically the role 3D Models facilitate in better linking the activities among project management, design and engineering, construction, and operation is shown in Figure 2.2 entitled Integrated Design and Construction. (SD-104, p. 10)
Reference: (SD-104)

Key Performance Indicators

Improved design (more efficient plant construction), Improved cost, Improved quality (reduced of field rework), Improved schedule (reduced of overall time required to design and deliver construction projects), Improved safety, Improve operations and maintainability

Research Publications

3-D Modeling as a Tool to Improve Integrated Design in Construction - SD-104

Publication Date: 11/1994 Type: Research Report Pages: 175 Status: Archived Reference