Affordable Clean Energy for Underprivileged Communities: A Case Study

Helping underprivileged communities gauge the affordability of clean energy technology is one step in the direction of empowering them to make the investment in it. Solar, in particular, has a lot of promise in certain Global South nations that have high solar availability, with dense populations that require spatial efficiency. It is a simple, elegant, and relatively low-maintenance technology that can serve the needs of many communities and offer exceptional long-term savings via a reduced or eliminated energy bill. Coupled with government subsidies and incentives, the solar market can be an effective solution to the problem of energy poverty for many communities in Global South nations.

This article by Meghna Patnaik, who specializes in Sustainable Environmental Design and is currently a Design Engineer at SunPower, describes a feasibility study she did for the development of solar power as an affordable clean energy technology for one such community—the Purkal Youth Development Society, a nonprofit organization located in Purkal, India, which serves low-income communities from the surrounding villages.

URL: http://www.aecbytes.com/feature/2018/SolarPowerAffordability.html

NVIDIA GTC 2018 Conference

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This article summarizes the key technologies relevant to the AEC industry that were exhibited at NVIDIA’s recent GTC (GPU Technology Conference) event, including AI denoising, which uses machine learning to train a renderer to remove noise more quickly from a scene; predictive rendering, which provides quick and highly accurate photorealistic renderings to facilitate decision-making; virtual reality, which enables not only immersive navigation but also collaborative design in a 3D virtual environment; and intelligent video analytics, which uses vision recognition, data analytics, and machine learning to analyze the data captured by the exponentially growing amount of cameras in cities worldwide and turn it into insights for “smart cities.”

URL: http://www.aecbytes.com/newsletter/2018/issue_92.html

BIM and Data Science

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Given the increasing use of BIM technology in the AECO industry, it is extremely important to understand and explore the underlying BIM data. In this article, Rashid Siddiqui, BIM Manager and Data Scientist at AECOM, shares some of the internal developments at AECOM to use data science for machine learning, data mining, statistics, and data visualization for BIM, in order to achieve significant time savings and improved accuracy.

URL: http://www.aecbytes.com/feature/2018/BIM-DataScience.html

Customer Implementations from GRAPHISOFT KCC 2017

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Earlier this year, I provided an overview of GRAPHISOFT’s 2017 Key Client Conference (KCC) event that was held in Kyoto, Japan, including the key updates from GRAPHISOFT, the global launch of ARCHICAD 21, and the third party solutions that work with GRAPHISOFT products. The majority of the KCC event, however, was devoted to presentations from GRAPHISOFT customers across the world, sharing their work and how they were using GRAPHISOFT solutions, not just for architecture but also for construction. This article captures some of the main implementation themes common to many of these customers as described in their presentations, including schematic design, algorithmic modeling, the use of OpenBIM, facilitation of downstream processes, and the use of advanced technologies such as virtual and augmented reality.

URL: http://www.aecbytes.com/feature/2017/KCC2017-Customers.html

Bentley’s Year in Infrastructure 2017 Conference

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This article captures the highlights of Bentley’s annual Year in Infrastructure (YII) conference that was held a few weeks ago in Singapore. As always, Bentley uses this event as a “State of the Union” of sorts for the company and its products, showcasing its achievements, milestones, acquisitions, and product updates. It also provides some insights into its future technology roadmap, including product ideas it is working on and the broader vision underlying them. As such, it is an excellent way to get up to speed on what one of leading AEC technology vendors has to offer the industry, both in terms of what it currently has as well as what is coming up.

In addition to the updates from Bentley, the event also provides the opportunity for Bentley users all over the world to present the projects that they have implemented using Bentley solutions. In fact, more time at the conference is devoted to these project presentations for the Be Inspired Awards than to Bentley’s own updates, giving attendees in different infrastructure disciplines the opportunity to learn about how Bentley solutions are being used to execute projects in their specific discipline. Collectively, they showcase a wide range of infrastructure projects, ranging from individual buildings all the way to city-wide planning and transportation, and across all stages of the project lifecycles, from initial planning through to operation and maintenance.

URL: http://www.aecbytes.com/newsletter/2017/issue_90.html

AEC Technology Updates, 2017

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In what seems to have become an annual event, this article captures the many developments in AEC technology that I have not been able to cover in my regular articles and reviews. It is an encouraging sign of the AEC technology industry being so vibrant that we not only see new releases of existing products on a regular basis, but also brand-new solutions hoping to address the thorny issues of design and construction more innovatively. This 2017 AEC technology round-up looks at both—new releases of existing products such as Allplan, Twinmotion, 4M IDEA, BIM Assure, Aconex, and Autocase; as well as new solutions including Unicorn Render for rendering and BIMsmith for finding BIM content.

URL: http://www.aecbytes.com/newsletter/2017/issue_89.html

Cityzenith Smart World for City Information Modeling

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Now that BIM has been firmly established as the go-to technology for the design and construction of buildings, the expansion of the “information modeling” concept to infrastructure as well as cities is also underway. While infrastructure modeling seems to be a natural offshoot of BIM and closely related to existing building modeling technologies, city information modeling or CIM is a different beast altogether, which is why most of the upcoming CIM solutions are being built from the ground up by completely different developers than AEC technology leaders like Autodesk and Bentley. One such developer is Cityzenith, whose 5D Smart World platform for CIM is rapidly gaining traction. This review takes an in-depth look at Smart World and how it works.

URL: http://www.aecbytes.com/review/2017/CityzenithSmartWorld.html

GRAPHISOFT KCC 2017

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For the past few years, GRAPHISOFT has been hosting an annual invitation-only event that brings together its key clients across the world. Called the Key Client Conference (KCC), the 2017 event was held a couple of weeks ago in Kyoto, Japan, and the opportunity to attend it enabled me to get a much better understanding of the use of GRAPHISOFT’s products at a global level rather than primarily in North America where I am based.

This article captures the highlights of the event comprising updates from GRAPHISOFT, the global launch of ARCHICAD 21, an overview of several third party solutions working with GRAPHISOFT products, and a glimpse at some examples of the use of these products by customers worldwide.

URL: http://www.aecbytes.com/newsletter/2017/issue_88.html