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Shrinking the Construction Site

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2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access


Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

Construction Engineering Division Technical Session 4

Tagged Division

Construction Engineering

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Paper Authors


Nicholas Tymvios Bucknell University

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Nicholas Tymvios received a B.S. and M.S. degree in Civil Engineering from Purdue University in 1999, and 2002 respectively. After working for four years in Cyprus in the construction industry, he was accepted into the Ph.D. program at Oregon State University, where he graduated in 2013 with a degree in Civil Engineering with emphasis in Construction Engineering and Management. His area of concentration is construction safety, and in particular Prevention through Design.
Upon graduation, he worked for four years as an Assistant Professor at UNC-Charlotte. He is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering at Bucknell University (Lewisburg, PA, USA).

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Miles Book Bucknell University

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Construction operations are loud, dangerous, and often remote. So, taking a field trip to a construction site for a class period is almost never feasible. Nowadays, zoom and various multimedia technologies provide convenient opportunities to visually bring the construction site to the class room, but these can be cumbersome, and less engaging than a site visit. In conjunction with the visual stimulation of going to the site, or bringing the site to the class room through video, it is important for students to have tactile stimulation as well. Our work aims to provide the means for this tactile stimulation with three dimensional scaled models of construction projects, a process we call “shrinking the construction site.” Through careful and accurate design of the 3D models, it is possible to show construction processes and step by step procedures for the construction of various building elements all while providing visual and tactile stimulation for students in a classroom environment. This paper describes the procedures taken in order to design and construct a 3D model of the processes taking place during the construction of a reinforced concrete building, such as excavation, installation of formwork, installation of reinforcement, pouring concrete and removing the formwork. The aim of this model is to provide a tactile experience for students during the instruction of formwork temporary structures, and other construction operations. It can also be used to instruct topics such as construction site safety, site logistics, and resource management among others. The researchers aim to expand the 3D model to include steel building construction models, and representative utility installation components.

Tymvios, N., & Book, M. (2021, July), Shrinking the Construction Site Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. 10.18260/1-2--37713

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