ENGINEERING TECH

Inside the Autodesk Laboratories, Where the Future of Construction, from Drones to Holograms, is Being Tested

Autodesk | July 06, 2021

When renovation on a century-old YMCA facility in Beverly, Massachusetts, started, a laser scan of the structure revealed a unique challenge: almost every ceiling in the building was slightly uneven. Reframing the building's walls would need the use of hundreds of various-sized studs. It would be a complicated nightmare to build them on-site.

As a result, Windover Construction, the firm in charge of the renovation, sought a technical solution. So they put their laser scan data into an automated steel frame fabrication equipment, which accurately produced light gauge steel studs and panels for the building, collaborating with the New Zealand-based manufacturing firm Howick. The machine also added one important feature. The new studs may telescope, shrinking down to fit more easily into and through the old building's tight spaces and extending out like a shower curtain rod put into position.

The telescoping wall stud is only one of the construction innovations created in a unique new multidisciplinary initiative sponsored by Autodesk, the creator of the industry-standard architectural design tool AutoCAD. Autodesk has established a residency program for businesses trying to utilize new technologies to address design and construction issues via its Technology Centers. Windover and Howick got together due to the program, recognizing that one had technology that could solve the other's issue.

The building business is currently a low-tech affair. Regardless of the fancy design tools and advanced building information modeling systems used by architects and engineers, once a project is under construction, it is thrown into a decentralized world of general contractors who source materials, hire workers, and build projects according to their formulas. In the business, best practices are often based on what each contractor has done in the past. A more systematic approach to construction that uses technology is still a notion rather than a reality.

The Technology Centers, situated in Autodesk locations in San Francisco, Boston, Toronto, and Birmingham, England, are similar to large fabrication laboratories where firms and researchers attempt to discover new production techniques to solve construction industry problems. The facilities, which opened in 2018, include CNC metalworking equipment, 3D printers, water jet cutting systems, 5-axis robotic arms, and laboratories where composite materials, glass, and ceramics can be used to create new components and tools. In addition, Autodesk provides residencies ranging from two weeks to two years, providing space and resources for startups, academia, and established industry players to explore new ideas and develop novel ways to design and construct.

A team of students from the University of Southern California recently used the Boston Technology Center to robotically build an intricate steel pedestrian bridge that now crosses a ravine in Los Angeles.

The pandemic prompted Autodesk to shut its Technology Centers, but Rundell said they would return gradually starting this month. In any case, the closure of the centers had little effect on the collaboration. Autodesk converted the residency program to a virtual version, allowing businesses to meet and work online. As a result, more companies showed interest in participating because they did not have to go to one of the Technology Centers or give up billable hours. The network of the residency program now includes about 160 companies and organizations.

Windover Construction has utilized the network to find additional construction solutions, including a collaboration with Fologram, an Australian mixed reality company. As a result, Windover reduced that part of the project's schedule by 70% by using Microsoft HoloLens goggles and Fologram's mixed reality technology to direct the assembly of hundreds of roof trusses for a building project.

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Communication Service Providers face great disruption. Mobility today means much more than phones - connected cars, smart cities, and the Internet of Things will place telecommunications infrastructures under more stress than ever. Moreover, Over-The-Top (OTT) providers have cannibalised call and text revenues, in addition to siphoning off entertainment services revenues – while subscribers use more data than ever.


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CONSTRUCTION

Projectmates Construction Project Management Software Wins Top Products Award

Projectmates by Systemates, Inc. | January 14, 2022

Projectmates, the enterprise construction project management software, is honored to be recognized as a Constructech Top Product for 2022. The annual awards recognize construction products that demonstrate outstanding innovation. Trusted by the construction industry for more than 20 years, Projectmates was built for agility, scalability and affordability. The software provides immediate visibility into every project schedule, construction workflow, and real-time budget spend, empowering construction project owners to make data-driven decisions to control costs, schedules, and project risks. “Project owners need data in the office and on the go. Projectmates delivers a cloud-based construction project management tool that puts information into the hands of owners — when and where they need it,” says Peggy Smedley, President and Editorial Director of Constructech. “What sets Projectmates apart is the development of our software,I am particularly proud of this recognition because it clearly demonstrates our dedication to designing and creating a fully integrated system in-house. We don’t piece together functionality from various software providers and hope it works. Our software is developed in response to user feedback in conjunction with the latest construction technology demands. It’s this continuous innovation that fosters our long-standing relationships with our clients.” -Varsha Bhave, president and Chief Technology Officer of Projectmates and its parent company, Systemates, Inc. As a single, integrated platform, the need for additional construction management software is effectively eliminated, minimizing duplicate data and the errors that double-data entry can cause. This allows project managers to focus on managing projects instead of managing project data housed in various non-connected platforms — which leads to faster construction timelines and lower overall costs. The Constructech Top Products honor products in the commercial construction, home building, and infrastructure markets. Evaluated by the Constructech editors, editorial board, and industry advisors, the awards recognize software, hardware, tools, equipment, and more, giving the ‘top’ technology designation to companies that have met criteria including a solid, underlying technology foundation and new innovative features to meet the ongoing needs of the construction industry. The original article and full list of award winners can be viewed here. For more information about Projectmates, please visit www.projectmates.com. About Projectmates by Systemates, Inc. Projectmates is a construction project management software platform that is configurable, intuitive, and easy to use for project owners. With features such as construction workflows, capital planning, and cost tracking, Projectmates solves many of the construction industry’s pressing problems. Richardson, TX-based Systemates, Inc. is the company behind Projectmates; and, its commitment to continuous improvement has made Projectmates one of the most valued products in the AECO market today. Projectmates' collaborative platform dramatically improves project execution, cuts costs, and delays, increases accountability and reduces project risks.

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DESIGN

Patented DatavaultⓇ Technology Enables Metaverse Art Gallery And Mints Featured Artists NFTs At Inaugural World Art Forum In Egypt

Saphira & Ventura | January 17, 2022

Data Vault Holdings Inc., leading the way in tokenomics and metaverse data visualization, valuation, and monetization, announced it has developed a metaverse art gallery in collaboration with the inaugural international art event World Art Forum, hosted by the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization. The patented DatavaultⓇ platform mints NFTs of participating artists in support of the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through art in Egypt and the world. The gallery proves the resourcefulness of NFTs–in its transformation of data objects through the metaverse–to create new digital assets from existing works. It will also showcase ADIO's data packet technology to create custom call-to-actions within the NFT art itself. The World Art Forum will take place in Cairo, Egypt at the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization from January 15-19, 2022. "We couldn't have envisioned just a few years ago the heights that NFTs would reach in their potential to not only improve the financial stability of artists, but also to address the social ills in the world. Sustainability and our collective carbon footprint are issues that the metaverse have helped to address. Through NFT art, DatavaultⓇ can effortlessly repurpose art to reduce, reuse, and recycle materials via our patented technology. What this exhibit's attendees, artists, owners, and collectors will witness is the emerging capability of NFT art to provide sustainable alternatives for creators, and the NFT market overall," -Nathaniel Bradley, co-founder and CEO of Data Vault Holdings. The World Art Forum, open to the public, will feature more than 150 pieces and sculptures from 27 countries. Art will be represented by more than 20 local, regional, and international galleries. The event will showcase NFTs minted by DatavaultⓇ from cultural centers in Africa, Europe, Asia, the United States, and the Middle East. Datavault's novel technology will mint NFTs of distinguished artists in painting, ceramics, sculpture, and visual arts. Artists include: Heidi Fosli (Norway), Abinoro Akporode Collins (Nigeria), Giorio Piccaia (Italy), Jorg Van Daele (Belgium), Larissa Noury (France), Wissam Fahmy (Egypt), and Ahmed Nawar (Egypt). The works will be featured alongside more than 1,000 anticipated visitors over the course of the five-day event, which will also include guest panelists across the fields of government, the arts, and global development. Datavault's metaverse gallery will provide a successful proof-of-concept for the utility of NFTs as a sustainable, revenue-generating art form for artists, collectors, and owners. DatavaultⓇ adds another layer to the Data Revolution through its support of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in conjunction with the United Nations Representative Office In Egypt. Datavault's metaverse gallery will help to specifically promote SDG #17, which focuses on building partnerships among artists, development partners, and organizations to integrate art with the fundamental social issues of today–issues such as equality, women's empowerment, and cultural dialogue. Additionally, Datavault's patented platform offers a securitized digital item that provides continual royalties and residual income. DatavaultⓇ will also further authenticate the minted NFTs through the use of ADIO's proprietary data packet technology. Previously, DatavaultⓇ laid the groundwork for the multidisciplinary World Art Forum collaboration through the platform's inaugural metaverse gallery last month at the global art fair Art Basel Miami Beach, hosted December 2-5. DatavaultⓇ demonstrated its patented crypto technology creating NFTs from original works of featured artists from around the world, as digital art for purchase. Also last month, DatavaultⓇ completed the full metaverse exhibition "NFTs: Timeless and Ancient Art Exhibition", in collaboration with the New York art gallery Saphira & Ventura from December 28-30. This exhibit provided an accessible means for experiencing new and existing monetization capabilities within the emerging NFT space, through the minting of NFTs from participating artists' works as well as ancient masterpieces. Moreover, Saphira & Ventura will participate in this year's World Art Forum as one of more than 20 featured art galleries. Starting January 15, in collaboration with the World Art Forum, DatavaultⓇ will leverage the potential within the metaverse and use art as a universal language to promote artistic expression, financial viability, and sustainable development. DatavaultⓇ has only begun to tap into the limitless possibility of NFTs across mediums and locations. About the World Art Forum The World Art Forum aims to use art to connect global regions, artists, and galleries; establish partnerships among them; and facilitate integration between art and societal issues. The event features artists from around the world who share the goal of raising awareness about global issues and establishing a more sustainable future. This year's inaugural event will be under the auspices of the Egyptian government in partnership with the United Nations Representative Office in Egypt. Learn more about the World Art Forum here. About Data Vault Holdings Inc. Data Vault Holdings Inc. is a technology holding company that provides a proprietary, cloud-based platform for the delivery of branded data-backed cryptocurrencies. Data Vault Holdings Inc. provides businesses with the tools to monetize data assets securely over its Information Data Exchange™ (IDE). The company is in the process of finalizing the consolidation of its affiliates Data Donate Technologies, Inc., ADIO LLC, and Datavault Inc. as wholly-owned subsidiaries under one corporate structure. Learn more about Data Vault Holdings Inc. here. About Datavault Inc. Datavault Inc. holds a patented, cloud-based technology that transforms the way in which businesses value and trade data. The Datavault Inc. team has transferred decades of experience in enterprise solutions, blockchain technology, and digital security to help clients transact data objects in real time. Datavault Inc. holds the Information Data Exchange™ (IDE), a first-of-its-kind exchange that enables registered buyers and sellers to trade data objects for cash or other monetary assets, including cryptocurrencies. Learn more about Datavault Inc. here. About ADIO LLC ADIO LLC has developed a breakthrough ad-driven monetization platform that enhances user experience through high-frequency audio advertising. ADIO uses its patented pioneering data pocket technology to integrate into an audio file for a more robust user experience. Learn more about ADIO LLC here. About Saphira & Ventura Saphira & Ventura Art Design Architecture, is a global talent management network focused on art, design and architecture as well as alternative forms of expression such as NFTs, working with artists and cultural creators from various countries. Saphira & Ventura Art Design Architecture challenges the traditional perception of the meaning of art, fashion, design, and customs, seeing through the lens of inclusion, purpose, and positive self-expression. In this spirit, the Saphira & Ventura group is bringing new technologies to seek, develop and validate its scalable business model, improve transactions through the use of blockchain technology, and enhance the user experience. Learn more about Saphira & Ventura here.

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CONSTRUCTION

XCMG Ranks in Top Three in KHL Group's Yellow Table for Second Consecutive Year

XCMG | June 07, 2022

XCMG is ranked among the top three original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in the world for the second consecutive year, according to the Yellow Table published by International Construction Magazine, a subsidiary of global construction media company KHL Group. Furthermore, XCMG's aerial work platform also ranks fifth worldwide in the Access M20 Manufacturers list. XCMG has performed well in other global performance indicators, with mobile canes and horizontal directional drilling ranked first, tower cranes ranked second, truck-mounted cranes and road machinery ranked third for the first time, mine surface excavation equipment ranked top five, and complete sets of piling machinery and concrete machinery ranked first. XCMG's excavation equipment ranks second in China and sixth in the world and has exceeded 200,000 units in production and sales. Additionally, XCMG's has made the industry's first position of lifting fire trucks and boom-type aerial work platforms more stable, improving profitability. Revenue for small construction machinery and forklifts increased by 50% and 258% respectively year-on-year. XCMG's new maintenance base is also in operation, with the asphalt station and chassis maintenance products ranking among top two in the industry. Not only has XCMG's operating income reached a record high, the revenue balance across different product categories has also become more even." Wang Min, CEO and Chairman of XCMG Internationalization of markets In 2021, despite obstacles presented by the pandemic, XCMG expanded to overseas markets and achieved export revenue exceeding RMB 13 billion, a year-on-year increase of more than 90%. Other international achievements also include investing USD 99 million in North American market expansion, winning a contract for a large order of cranes worth RMB 100 million in Asia-Pacific, deploying almost RMB 200 million of large-scale open-pit mining equipment to Africa, supplying 500 excavators to Southeast Asia and delivering over 100 aerial work platforms to North America. Additionally, XCMG Brazilian manufacturing base is making breakthroughs in the South American construction machinery market. In 2021, its production and sales volume saw a more than 200% year-on-year increase and its operating scale increased by 198% year-on-year. "The development goal of our Five-Year Plan is to ensure that income from internationalization is no less than 40%," Wang added. Driving industry change As a world leader in the construction machinery industry, XCMG's vision is driven by long-term investment and high-level innovation in research and development into the technology surrounding its equipment. In recent years, XCMG has continued to strengthen its innovation capacity and develop leading scientific and technological research. Among its products are the world's largest tower crane XGT15000-600S, the world's largest rear-drive mining dump truck DE440, super-large mining grader GR5505, and domestic tonnage loader XC9350, which form part of its extensive catalog of high-quality machinery.

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ENGINEERING TECH

First Residential Building to Be Built Entirely From HOFFMANN Carbon-free and 0% Clinker Concrete

MAULINI | May 11, 2022

Hoffmann Green Cement Technologies an industrial player committed to decarbonizing the construction sector that designs and distributes innovative clinker-free cement, announces the construction of an R+6 (six-storey) building made entirely of Hoffmann decarbonated concrete in Geneva, Switzerland with the Maulini Construction Group. One year after signing its first international contract with the Swiss construction group Maulini, concrete castings made with Hoffmann's H-UKR cement, are accelerating and are currently being used for the complete construction of a six-storey building (foundations, columns, beams, floors and walls) in Geneva. This is the first multi-family building in Europe to be 100% built with carbon-free and clinker-free concrete. "The completion of this large-scale, fully carbon-free construction site in Switzerland demonstrates both the competitiveness and quality of Hoffmann concrete and, more generally, that it is already possible to massively decarbonise the construction sector with our technologies.” Julien Blanchard and David Hoffmann, co-founders of Hoffmann Green Cement Technologies Nicolas Maulini, Chairman of the Maulini Group, states: "We are proud of the partnership we are developing with Hoffmann; it allows us to offer our clients and to use Hoffmann cement on our construction sites right now. On site, Hoffmann's carbon-free concrete performs perfectly and allows us to build this six-storey building with unprecedented environmental performance in full compliance with our schedule and specifications. We will carry on with large-scale projects of this type in order to meet the growing demand of all our partners for carbon-free construction.” ABOUT HOFFMANN GREEN CEMENT TECHNOLOGIES Founded in 2014 and based in Bournezeau Hoffmann Green Cement Technologies designs, produces and distributes innovative extremely low-carbon cements – with a carbon footprint 6 times lower than traditional cement – that present, at equivalent dosage and with no alteration to the concrete manufacturing process, superior performances than traditional cement. With one 4.0 industrial sites already operational and two new sites on the way, the Group has industrialized a genuine technological breakthrough based on alterations to cement’s composition and the creation of a clean, heating-free and clinker-free manufacturing process making it a leading and unique player on a cement market that has not undergone any significant changes in the last 200 years. Within the context of the climate emergency, Hoffmann Green Cement is thus actively participating in the energy transition by working to create eco-responsible buildings and by encouraging the circular economy and the preservation of natural resources. Thanks to its unrivaled technological know-how that is constantly improving, driven by effective and cutting-edge teams, Hoffmann Green Cement Technologies addresses all construction sector markets, both in France and abroad. ABOUT MAULINI Maulini is a century-old family business with 250 employees, which has been one of the main players in Geneva and the Lake Geneva region in construction, renovation, civil engineering and general contracting since 1910. Driven by strong values, the 4th generation is leading the company with the aim of making it evolve with the times and projecting it into a sector that must reinvent itself in order to minimise its environmental impact.

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Communication Service Providers face great disruption. Mobility today means much more than phones - connected cars, smart cities, and the Internet of Things will place telecommunications infrastructures under more stress than ever. Moreover, Over-The-Top (OTT) providers have cannibalised call and text revenues, in addition to siphoning off entertainment services revenues – while subscribers use more data than ever.

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