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Supporting pre-tender construction planning with virtual prototyping

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Purpose ‐ Virtual prototyping technologies linked to building information models are commonplace within the aeronautical and automotive industries. Their use within the construction industry is now emerging. The purpose of this paper is to show how these technologies have been adopted on the pre-tender planning for a typical construction project. Design/methodology/approach ‐ The research methodology taken was an "action research" approach where the researchers and developers were actively involved in the production of the virtual prototypes on behalf of the contractor thereby gaining consistent access to the decisions of the planning staff. The experiences from the case study were considered together with similar research on other construction projects. Findings ‐ The findings from the case studies identify the role of virtual prototyping in components modelling, site modelling, construction equipment modelling, temporary works modelling, construction method visualization and method verification processes. Originality/value ‐ The paper presents a state-of-the-art review and discusses the implications for the tendering process as these technologies are adopted. The adoption of the technologies will lead to new protocols and changes in the procurement of buildings and infrastructure.

Keywords: Construction operations; Modelling; Prototypes; Simulation; Tendering

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 27, 2009

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