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Olearczyk J.,University of Alberta | Hermann U.,PCL Industrial Management Inc. | Al-Hussein M.,University of Alberta | Bouferguene A.,University of Alberta
Construction Research Congress 2010: Innovation for Reshaping Construction Practice - Proceedings of the 2010 Construction Research Congress | Year: 2010

Managing the behaviour and trajectory of an object lifted by a crane is critical to a successful lift. This paper presents advancements in the development of mathematical algorithms for lifted object trajectory paths and analyses. The proposed methodology is divided into smaller manageable phases to control the process and at the same time to create independent modules. Each step of the lifted object movement was geometrically tracked, starting at the lifted object pick-point, through an optimum path development and completing at the object final position (set-point). Parameters such as the minimum distance between the lifted object and passing obstructions and minimum allowable clearance between the lifted object and the crane boom are some of the many predefined rules which were taken into account. The lifted object's spatial trajectory analysis and optimization is a part of the complex assignment relating to the crane selection process. A numerical example is presented to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed methodology and illustrate its essential value. Copyright ASCE 2010.


Taghaddos H.,PCL Industrial Management Inc. | Abourizk S.,University of Alberta | Mohamed Y.,University of Alberta | Hermann U.,PCL Industrial Management Inc.
Journal of Construction Engineering and Management | Year: 2012

Resource scheduling, or the allocation of resources over time, is a challenging problem in large-scale or multiple-project environments. Traditional network scheduling techniques are ineffective in modeling the dynamic nature and resource interactions of large or multiunit projects. This paper presents a simulation-based auction protocol (SBAP) to solve resource scheduling problems in large-scale construction projects. SBAP is a hybrid framework that integrates multi agent resource allocation (MARA) in a simulation environment. SBAP deploys a centralized resource allocation approach, referred to as an auction protocol, whereby agents bid on different combinations of resources at the start of a simulation cycle. Agents attempt to improve their individual welfare by acquiring a combination of resources; an auctioneer looks at the entire system and allocates resources to the agents using a combinatorial algorithm to maximize an overall objective function (e.g., maximizing the system's revenue or minimizing total costs). The auction is repeated on a regular basis. Simulation is also employed in large-scale projects to track the availability of resources, capture and release the resources, and satisfy constraints of the problem. This paper demonstrates the architecture of the SBAP framework and discusses implementation of SBAP in a real case study of crane allocation in an industrial project. © 2012 American Society of Civil Engineers.


Taghaddos H.,PCL Industrial Management Inc. | Hermann U.,PCL Industrial Management Inc. | Abourizk S.,University of Alberta | Mohamed Y.,University of Alberta
Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering | Year: 2014

Modular construction is a common practice for building industrial plants, particularly in the oil sands region of Alberta, Canada. Each module is a project with its own activities and constraints. These modules are prefabricated offsite, at a location called the module assembly yard, and then shipped to the site. Effective scheduling of modules of an industrial plant involves developing a realistic schedule that makes best use of limited resources in the yard while satisfying the constraints and uncertainties of the entire project. Scheduling such large-scale, multiunit projects using commercial CPM-based scheduling applications (e.g., Primavera, Microsoft Project) is not effective. In previous work, we have introduced a hybrid framework, called simulation-based auction protocol (SBAP), for effective resource scheduling in large-scale projects. The present study employs the SBAP framework for effective allocation of resources (e.g., space, skilled crew) and for satisfaction of various constraints. This system pulls data from a comprehensive database, runs the simulation model behind the scenes, and generates various graphical reports to aid superintendents and project managers in pertinent project decisions. The developed system is also capable of scheduling the fast-track modular construction projects with limited data available, doing effective resource leveling, and scheduling resources (e.g., space, crew) effectively based on various shifts and calendars. The described case study in this paper demonstrates the capabilities of the developed system for planning the module assembly yards. © 2012 American Society of Civil Engineers.


Abourizk S.,University of Alberta | Halpin D.,Purdue University | Mohamed Y.,University of Alberta | Hermann U.,PCL Industrial Management Inc.
Journal of Construction Engineering and Management | Year: 2011

Construction simulation, a fast-growing field, is the science of developing and experimenting with computer-based representations of construction systems to understand their underlying behavior. This paper provides a history of construction simulation theory, explores the CYCLONE modeling methodology and its major subsequent developments, examines the development of the Simphony.NET and COSYE modeling environments and their functionality as more generic simulation platforms, and reviews effective strategies for applying simulation in construction. A construction simulation case study is presented that illustrates one successful approach for adopting simulation technology in the industry and outlines the benefits to industry of integrating these technologies. The paper provides an overview of long-term simulation initiatives leading to the next generation of computer modeling systems for construction, where simulation plays an integral role in a futuristic vision of automated project planning and control. © 2011 American Society of Civil Engineers.


Hu D.,PCL Industrial Management Inc. | Mohamed Y.,University of Alberta
Journal of Construction Engineering and Management | Year: 2014

The process of planning and scheduling industrial construction fabrication (ICF) jobs is difficult because the sequence of operations varies considerably from one product to another due to the unique design and configuration of products. Traditional critical path method (CPM)-related approaches are not effective due to CPM's limitation or inability to model the repetition of operations, interactions between resources, and what-if scenarios. Discrete event simulation (DES) is often used to model processes that are repetitive in nature; however, DES has limitations in modeling ICF shops due to considerable differences between operation sequences, which means a model can only be used once per project. This paper proposes a new simulation-model-structuring methodology, which directly addresses product uniqueness and complex routing issues in ICF shops and significantly simplifies the simulation-model development. This methodology fully supports shop scheduling and schedule updating essential for ICF shops that operate under highly dynamic project environments. © 2014 American Society of Civil Engineers.


Lei Z.,University of Alberta | Taghaddos H.,PCL Industrial Management Inc. | Hermann U.,PCL Industrial Management Inc. | Al-Hussein M.,University of Alberta
Automation in Construction | Year: 2013

Industrial projects are constructed in the form of prefabricated modules that are transported to sites for installation, a process which enhances efficiency and productivity. As these prefabricated modules become heavier, proper lift planning is essential for onsite efficiency and safety. One aspect of the heavy lift study is to check the path feasibility for specific lifted modules. Current practice in path checking process is tedious and prone to errors. This paper proposes a generic method for mobile crane lifting binary (yes-or-no) path checking. The methodology calculates the minimum and maximum crane lift radii based on capacity and the crane's configuration, which are then modified considering site constraints. The modules' erection orders are also taken into consideration, and a configuration space approach is used to simplify the work space. The modified radii and simplified work space are merged with the lifted module pick area for path checking. The methodology is incorporated into a computer module for automatic calculation and visualization. A case study involving an industrial project is provided for validation and to highlight the designed computer module's essential features. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Olearczyk J.,PCL Industrial Management Inc. | Al-Hussein M.,University of Alberta | Bouferguene A.,University of Alberta | Telyas A.,Kullman Building Corporation
Congress on Computing in Civil Engineering, Proceedings | Year: 2012

Adequate crane position on construction site required large amount of site data to be collected, prior to any lift operation. Existed permanent/ non-permanent obstructions as well as objects being placed on their final position, must be considered for each lift. This paper presents a methodology for crane selection and on-site utilization evolutionary algorithm for multi-lifts for modular construction. The proposed methodology accounts for cranes capacity limitation as well as evaluates the crane carrier/body position and orientation. State-of-the-art methodology incorporate evolutionary algorithm that reacts to dynamic changing site conditions. This paper introduces a case study where the objectives were to simplify and optimize the field assembly operation for 5- three-storey dormitory buildings including bridges and large roofs in McGregor Village for Muhlenberg College in Allentown, Pennsylvania, USA. Each dormitory contains three types of modules and a total of 18 separate modular units. Fully habitable elements were delivered securely on flatbed trailers to the site in advance. An all-terrain mobile hydraulic crane placed in the center of construction site lift each module and placed like a puzzle floor by floor for each building at predefined position. All 100 lifts were conducted in only 10 working days. © 2012 American Society of Civil Engineers.


Safouhi H.,University of Alberta | Mouattamid M.,University of Alberta | Hermann U.,PCL Industrial Management Inc. | Hendi A.,PCL Industrial Management Inc.
Automation in Construction | Year: 2011

Optimal locations of mobile cranes in a construction site amongst known obstructions and boundary limits taking into account dimensions of the cranes, are evaluated and calculated on a construction site plot plan. A general algorithm has been developed to determine the workspace area in the construction site by preselecting data input satisfying the required crane-fitting distance and by calculating the crane body area to a given clearance distance. For each lifted object, the crane minimum and maximum radii based on capacity are overlaid on this work area to produce the feasible mobile crane position area. This is the first function of an automated crane selection and positioning program that runs independent of a CAD (computer aided design) system. The algorithm is implanted in the industry partner's crane application and a case study is presented demonstrating the benefit of the algorithm. © 2010 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.


Patent
Pcl Industrial Management Inc. | Date: 2013-07-19

A module lift assembly includes first and second multipoint adapter plates separated by a horizontal transverse spreader bar; a lift frame having first and second longitudinal lift beams separated by horizontal transverse bracing; a plurality of slings of adjustable length connecting the first multipoint adapter plate to the first lift beam and connecting the second multipoint adapter plate to the second lift beam; and a plurality of slider assemblies each slidingly affixed to the first and second lift beams, and a lift shackle for attaching to a module.


Patent
Pcl Industrial Management Inc. | Date: 2014-11-28

A module lift assembly includes a lift assembly, a pair of transversely spaced apart longitudinal lift beams and slings connecting the lift assembly to the lift beams. Each of slings is pivotally connected to the lift assembly and the connected lift beam, and is composed of pivotally connected elongate segments. Pivoting of the segments relative to each other, the lift assembly and the lift beams allows the lift assembly to be lowered and raised relative to the lift beams.

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