It is not a secret that technology has made its way into many different sectors, even the highly specialized ones. This even more true thanks to AI technology, that is slowly but surely making its way into many different areas. One of the latest applications of artificial intelligence is in construction engineering. The addition of AI in the civil engineering world has had a great success already, even though it is not as fast of an addition as it is in other kinds of sector.


The adding of artificial intelligence to the civil engineering field has been slow, but steady. The speed of things is due to the fact that although some aspects of a project can be bettered with AI, the big bulk of things still literally lies in the hands of actual people. One of the oldest practices still around, the laying of bricks cannot simply be replaced with artificial intelligence. At least, not for the time being. 

Nevertheless, AIs have indeed helped the initial steps of projects, in that they are used when algorithms are needed to calculate possible challenges, and improve the productivity and efficiency. In fact, the companies that have already started implementing artificial intelligence were shown to be more likely to profit 50% more than the ones without. 

With 5 distinct applications that the AIs can be used to speed projects up, civil engineering can literally begin saving time, and therefore, money. The first application is known as the “reinforcement learning” which means the AI can understand what the best way of doing something is, so helpful when it comes to planning and scheduling. The second application is “predictive applications to forecasting project risks” which like the name states, helps understand what how viable solutions are. The third application is “supervised learning applications for modularization and prefabrication” which basically means keeping tabs on the supply chain. The fourth one is “machine learning” which, as the name suggests is how robotic arms learn the steps to prefabricate materials and/or for general maintenance. 


And last but not least, the fifth AI application is the “image recognition”. The fifth application works with drones and three-dimensional imagery and is used for quality control for the project. The images gathered to show what the construction will look like after it’s completed, and therefore allow the engineers to correct any possible mistakes and/or modify the project as it develops. 

With the engineering and construction (E&C) field worth more than $10 trillion a year, the addition of AI is seen as further progress to a sector that remains critically under-digitized. The consulting agency, McKinsey & Company have stated that the E&C are only investing about 1 percent in the technology sector, putting it way behind many of its other business competitors. The time has come for the civil engineering and construction sectors to embrace technology and the many advantages it has to offer. 


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