Type of Document Dissertation Author Al-Masalha, Sami URN etd-03272005-092430 Title A Common Taxonomy for Modeling Construction operations Degree PhD Department Environmental Design and Planning Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title Wakefield, Ronald R. Committee Chair Beliveau, Yvan J. Committee Member Mills, Thomas H. Committee Member O'Brien, Michael J. Committee Member Schubert, Robert P. Committee Member Keywords
- Virtual Modeling.
- Construction Taxonomy
- Modeling of Construction Operations
- Construction simulation
Date of Defense 2004-08-02 Availability unrestricted AbstractA Common Taxonomy for Modeling Construction Operations
Ron Wakefield, Chairman
Department of Building Construction
Environmental Design and Planning Ph.D. Program
The construction industry continues to strive for new ways to improve construction
operations. This requires better understanding and analysis of these operations, which
necessitates a way to systematically capture and analyze the diverse elements involved.
The dynamic nature of construction is very difficult to describe using existing computer
simulation and modeling systems. What is needed is rather a common construction
language and a comprehensive modeling system that can be used to capture and analyze
construction operations and potentially lead to improvements.
A new taxonomy and its use for modeling construction operations are developed here.
This taxonomy identifies a hierarchical representation of construction projects based on
operational considerations. The hierarchy consists of seven levels: product, assemblies
and subassemblies, components, operations, processes, physics, and control. The
hierarchical levels were established by looking in the ways that construction field
operations are being carried out. The new modeling system successfully accounts for the
geometric and physical representations of not only the product but also the processes
involved in shaping the product. Six major blocks of construction knowledge are
described and information about the interaction processes required to model construction
operations in a logical way is provided.
An overview of the current state of modeling and simulation techniques that are used to
develop and evaluate construction operations is presented. The advantages and
limitations of physical-based modeling, 4D-CAD, and virtual modeling techniques as an
integral part of the developed taxonomy are identified. The potential uses of robotics and
automation opportunities in construction are described. Also, distribution of work
between humans and tools and equipment based on their physical and information
contributions are reviewed and analyzed. Classifications of construction work at different
levels of detail are described to identify which operations can be usefully modeled and
the appropriate level of the model.
Two practical case studies are discussed that show the capabilities and potential uses of
the developed taxonomy. The first case study describes the modeling process of the
fabrication, assembly, and erection of steel structures. The second exploratory case study
shows the potential use of the developed modeling in improving the heat recovery system
generator’s (HRSG) erection process. Also, prototype models and 3D models of the
HRSG assemblies are developed. Both case studies validate with great confidence the use
of the developed taxonomy as a direct support tool that captures the diverse elements and
enhances the modeling and analysis to improve construction operations.
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