In terms of automated production and level of digitalization, the tunnel construction industry is still significantly behind other industries. Nevertheless, the megatrends like big data or the internet of things (IoT) offer great opportunities for the future development of the tunnel construction sector.
A solution to achieve successful tunnel construction 4.0 is to create a digital twin of a tunnel construction site. A German start-up company offers a software solution that aims to accelerate construction by improving the information flow. This tunnel solution is a digital twin of a tunnel construction system across its lifecycle, using real-time data to enable understanding, learning and reasoning. CIM (Construction/Civil information modeling) enables architects and planners to come together and work on a set of 3D models. This in return, creates an interactive project which promotes real-time collaboration. When the architects and engineers are collaborating, planning and sharing the information of the project, they are effectively employing CIM. Through the use of CIM, projects of any scale can be constructed, this could be something as small as an tunnel cross passage to a full-fledged urban metro tunnel.
The software is based on game engine for managing and controlling technically the tunnel construction process specifically with a tunnel boring machine. The smart cloud-based management system makes it possible to visualise and analyse the process and data on 5D format. All data generated will be stopped in here with full security designed by the German company's experienced development team. The system will improve the whole construction process, delivering faster builds to a higher quality with fewer defects and more sustainable tunnels.
Partners from tunnel construction or construction service providers are sought for commercial agreements with technical assistance. The partners would implement the solution or integrate it in their portfolio with the help of the German company. The German company would provide the relevant know-how and assist with installation.
Research cooperation agreements are also of interest. The company would offer to contribute their expertise and know-how in research projects on construction topics.