3D machine control – How it may affect the future of building construction

What is 3D machine control?

No matter the experience of a machine operator, 3D machine control helps the machine operator to be more precise in the field. 3D machine control assists the machine operator to optimize and precise the work while also making it easier and faster. Additionally, it minimizes the risks of making mistakes, thus negating the consequence of starting over again. 

With 3D machine control, fewer people are required to be at the operating site, since the use of a surveyor isn’t necessary as it is already incorporated into the system. The surveyors may instead work on other assignments to optimize the time in the field, thus bringing the costs down and making it a good long-term investment.

Other benefits include a safer environment in the workplace. Workplace hazards may occur when there are slippery surfaces. These instances will be reduced, as the machine operator can spend more time in the excavator or wheel loader and use the tablet to observe where the work needs to be done. The work of the machine operator is solved faster, which also causes less weariness to the machine.

Is digitalization the future?

Molio, a Danish non-profit construction knowledge centre, made a report in 2020 about the digitalization of the construction industry. It is shown that nearly two-thirds of companies within the construction industry believe digitalization has more potential and much to gain from it. As technology is advancing, the construction industry also enjoys the benefits of technological advancement. Now, it is already an important part of a company’s planning, production and project management.

Companies expect that the issue digitalization faces is the challenge of understanding the new technology. Even though 3D machine control has been used for many years, the demand for it has become more popular in recent years, this may limit the knowledge a machine operator has on 3D machine control. However, things may start to change within a few years. The companies’ clients are beginning to demand digital processes and solutions. It is shown that 82% of the clients strongly agree to have digital solutions to public construction, while 17% agree and only 1% do not agree at all. It is a huge increase compared to 2018, and therefore shows that clients have higher requirements for digitalization and that we are moving towards a digitalized age.

The report additionally shows that there is a strong correlation between a company’s digitalization and its effectiveness and productivity. 

The barrier that prevents digitalization lies in the culture of the company of the organization. 3D machine control and digitalization are continuously being explored in the construction industry, which might be the reason for the barrier. Another obstacle is the investment it takes to digitalize it. The report shows it is often small companies with a few employees that use it the least, while medium-sized companies use it the most.

Finally, the report shows the biggest flaws with digitalization are linked to more quality and fewer mistakes. It makes the processes faster and more effective and creates a better relationship with the clients and suppliers.

How Unicontrol simplifies digitalization

Our solution to 3D machine control is less complicated than 3D machine control seems to be. At Unicontrol, we focus on being user-friendly and making technology simple to use. Therefore, we have worked on an easy system that takes around 20-30 minutes to learn, and you’re ready to use it.

Our solution is a combination of quality sensors and GPS antennas which makes it easier to see where the machine is localized. It will optimize the coordination with all your excavators and wheel loaders, without the need to take the project home, as it is in our cloud solution which is an extra component to the Unicontrol3D package. It gives you access to all your data on a platform that’s simple to use. That way, all your data for a building project is secured on the cloud.

The goal of 3D GPS machine control is to make it simple to use, without it taking days or even months to learn.

Michael Hansen from Øbakke says the following about Unicontrol3D:

“The feedback we have received from our customers is that Unicontrol3D is easy to use and understand, it is very user-friendly. Also, for the surveyor, it is easy to transfer and extract data. So overall Unicontrol is just easy to use, which is a substantial advantage for the system.”

We strive to develop all the time and to make it easier for the machine operator. That’s why our solution is developed with the help of feedback and user involvement from our clients, so we always know what our clients need. According to Molio, one of the challenges was also the investment it costs to digitalize. We have therefore at Unicontrol made the price affordable for all entrepreneurs and companies.

If you are interested in hearing more about Unicontrol, you are always welcome to give us a call at +45 898 00 240 or send us an email at contact@unicontrol.io.


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