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Beyond Digital Shadows: a Digital Twin for monitoring earthwork operation in large infrastructure projects

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Rogage, Kay 
Mahamedi, Elham 
Kassem, Mohamad 


Studies on Digital Twin (DT) have largely focussed on the operational phase of built assets and the urban environment. Digital Twin for the construction phase have received very limited attention. This paper proposes a Digital Twin framework for the construction phase, develops a DT prototype and test it for the use case of measuring the productivity and monitoring of earthwork operation. The DT framework and its prototype are underpinned by the principles of versatility, scalability, usability and automation to enable the DT to fulfil the requirements of large-sized earthwork projects and the dynamic nature of their operation. Cloud computing and dashboard visualisation were deployed to enable automated and repeatable data pipelines and data analytics at scale and provide insights in near-real time. The testing of the DT prototype in a motorway project in the Northeast of England successfully demonstrated its ability to produce key insights such as; i) predicting a piece of equipment utilisation ratio and productivity, ii) detecting the percentage of time spent on each task status (i.e. loading, hauling, dumping, returning or idling), the distance travelled by equipment over time and their speed distributions, and iii) visualising earthwork operation.



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AI in Civil Engineering

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EPSRC (EP/V056441/1)
European Commission Horizon 2020 (H2020) Industrial Leadership (IL) (955269)
Highways England Company (Unknown)
European Commission Horizon 2020 (H2020) Marie Sk?odowska-Curie actions (101034337)