At Topcon, we believe that we can no longer talk about individual products when we discuss our technology. One element of our hardware or software won’t revolutionise a job site in isolation. The whole workflow – both technology and working processes need to be considered.

At Intermat 2018 we explored this idea on our stand through our large touch screen. As an interactive display of various workflows, it brought to life the breadth of automation of the construction site – from drones, to machine control and mobile mapping. Visitors could explore the technology and workflows involved in the different areas through the touch screen.

From some of the first developments in automation – for example Topcon’s launch of machine control 15 years ago – the systems we can use on projects are becoming more holistic –connecting everything from initial context capture model of an area, to enabling material suppliers, contractors, surveyors and clients to share data, ideas and developments to a project digitally. The latest development of BIM is the 5D model, which incorporates both the 3D model as well as cost and time schedules. This technology now means that decisions on site are made based on hard data from the system – so each potential cause of action can be tested against the real time data, to ensure that cost and time implications of every decision are fully considered.

The construction industry has been slow to automate, and one of the reasons for this is the complexity of each project. Every building project has a different team, a different tender, a different client and a different environment. Digitisation needs to be flexible and updated in real time to make a real difference to working practices, and ultimately productivity and profitability.

At Topcon we look beyond our industry to improve our technology and explore the ways it can improve construction projects. For example, what can we learn about handling logistics and data from a busy hospital or an airport baggage handling system? How can we use VR & wearable technology to improve health and safety and efficiency on site? These are just some of the questions we’re asking and exploring to develop our offering and support our customers.

Find out more about how our technology can help you to work smarter on site.

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