Reveal has launched a new Unified Utility Model to help engineers understand the murky world of underground utility information and deliver their projects on-time and on-budget.

Most infrastructure construction projects begin with an engineer or CAD designer compiling maps from asset owners of all the existing utilities in a project scope area. It’s a painstaking and time-consuming exercise and, as many project managers will know, it can also be fruitless; existing utility plans are often incomplete and inaccurate, leading to inevitable design rework and delays on the ground as contractors uncover unknown utilities.

Slot trenches and trial holes can be dug to verify existing plans, but these necessary investigations often affect larger areas and cost more than required, causing major disruption to the public and the community through traffic closures, noise, pollution and carbon emissions.

The field of utility locating has emerged over the past few decades to fill the gap by providing accurate data on the location of underground utilities.

However, this information is typically only gathered by contractors prior to starting construction. Vital information about anomalies or undocumented utilities that could help inform design decisions goes unrecorded or remains as paint marks on the ground to be washed away over time.

Driving safety and efficiency in construction

To improve project outcomes and drive safer, more efficient infrastructure construction, Reveal has developed the concept of a Unified Utility Model – a 3D utility map that combines all sources of data on the underground in a framework that can be accessed and understood by engineers at the concept and design phases of a project.

The Unified Utility Model takes existing utility plans and informs them with the results of geophysical investigations and visual verifications to produce accurate, comprehensive models of the underground that are compatible with BIM and CAD design environments.

The Unified Utility Model applies internationally supported utility detection and mapping standards such as PAS-128 and AS-5488. Engineers can easily interpret and rely on the intuitive visualisations that accurately describe both the underground detections and the risks associated with them.

The Unified Utility Model depicts the existing utility record, the results of the utility investigation and the updated 3D visualisation of the asset, with a chain of evidence showing how the model has been derived.

Armed with the Unified Utility Model findings, engineers can design with confidence, knowing they are minimising the risks of project delay and cost overrun that affect most infrastructure construction in Australia.

Contact Reveal today to learn more about how your engineering consultancy can deploy Unified Utility Models on your next project.

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