Authors: Ahmed Khairadeen Ali, One Jae Lee and Chansik Park
Construction progress monitoring and visualization have recently undergone advanced development. However, the data exchange process between construction offices and jobsites still lacks automation and real-time data records. Furthermore, an information gap between construction offices and jobsite activity persists, and progress inspectors still need to visit jobsites to check progress and assign quality ratings. Therefore, this research proposes a near real-time construction progress monitoring system called (iVR), which integrates 3D scanning, extended reality, and visual programming to visualize interactive onsite inspection and provide numeric data. The iVR system contains four modules: 1) recording jobsite activity through 3D scan (iVR-scan); 2) processing and converting 3D scan data into a 3D model (iVR-preparation); 3) immersive virtual reality inspection in the construction office (iVR-inspect); and 4) visualizing inspection feedback on the construction jobsite using augmented reality (iVRfeedback). In other words, 3D laser scanners first capture an activity point cloud and the iVRpreparation algorithm processes and converts the point cloud into a 3D model that is sent to the construction office’s BIM cloud. Then, the proposed VR mode in iVR-inspect enables a quality assurance inspector to trace workflow, compare current project progress with blueprints, measure objects, and add text or design notes to 3D models to improve the site management and decision-making quality. Finally, iVR-feedback sends inspection reports to jobsite workers, who can visualize them in an augmented reality mode integrated with graphical algorithms. An experimental laboratory trial is presented in this paper to validate the concept; the iVR system for progress monitoring successfully generated the required results. The proposed system has the potential to help progress inspectors and workers complete quality and progress assessments and decision making through the development of a productive and practical communication platform. It compares favourably to conventional manual monitoring or data capturing, processing, and storing methods, which have storage, compatibility, and timeefficiency issues. Moreover, iVR minimizes physical interactions between workers and QA inspectors, thus creating healthier construction jobsites that are characterized by minimal human interaction. Finally, the same approach can be applied to more complex construction activities with movable natures.