Till now 3d cad technology is predominant. Recently researchers at Stanford University spending much time on projects about 4d technologies. Every technology try to upgrade constantly and cad is no different.
The new 4d technology is much emphasized on empowering project managers and engineers role in managing and minimizing risk throughout all stages of a construction project; effectively communicate the design, schedule, and other project data and rapidly explore design and construction alternatives.
During 1990s 2d and 3d of cad means advancement in visual representation of cad designs. It is just limited to graphics. At large we can access designs in various formats. The concept of 2d and 3d is just about animation and formats.
But 4d is a breakthrough of this decade. Researchers are mainly into bringing solution for core problem on functionality. Functionality to generate and manipulate model-based project data specifically object-models of the construction project.
Through 4d technologies one can generate multi views and clearly communicate the spatial and temporal aspects of construction schedules to all project participants. Planners, designers, and engineers will use 4D environments to visually relate data much like the way engineers use gradated color 3D models to visualize the stresses on structures.
The thought process is to produce object models of construction project visually in effective mode on the desktop, and in a web-browser. Now planners also can go for a visual-basic macro in Excel and a set of MaxScripts in 3D Studio Max.
4d technology indeed will bring smile on planners and cad analysts face as much importance also given to organization of models. Placing the geometric information in one layer onto two or more layers regrouping CAD components found on several layers onto a different set of layers. Breaking a component into smaller pieces and putting the pieces on separate layers. These above are main features of 4d technology.
Having said there are few challenges still to be solved. utilizing and extending current industry standard efforts such as STEP and IAI, the 4D simulation/visualization progresses and large displays vs. desktop displays.
With the help of tools 4d cad has to undergo process that contain importing the schedule data into the Java 4D application, importing the CAD data into the Java 4D application, organizing the CAD data into appropriate groupings, linking the components to the activities, assigning action-types and exporting 4D model to CAVE and to Java 4D applet. It’s easy to import the 4D associations exported from the Java 4D application.
Much improvements and upgrades can be seen in scheduling too. Typically 3d cad involves generating and naming activities, assigning durations to activities, sequencing activities but this time 4d hasn’t left behind in these aspects. This involves association of cad components and activities through lists of names or hierarchies, or by pointing to and clicking on graphical representations of activities.
Now the software can automatically link many projects that have naming conventions for activities in Primavera. Even a planner could perform the assembly sequence within the 4D environment, and the 4D tool would record the assembly sequence in a much more interactive way, similar to how today’s recording macro features work.
This was a guest article from Hina Khan.