XYZ Reality and UCL win Innovate UK KTP Grant to help transform hospital construction

London-based construction technology start-up XYZ Reality and UCL, have been awarded a government grant, to develop XYZ Reality’s augmented reality solution into the construction of UK hospitals. The grant has been awarded by UKRI through an Innovate UK Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP).

Founded in 2017, XYZ Reality developed Engineering-Grade AR to tackle some of the most pervasive and costly issues facing the construction industry. Its technology uniquely enables users to view hyperscale BIM models on-site in real-time and to millimeter accuracy, making it particularly beneficial for projects with complex MEP (mechanical, electrical and plumbing) services, such as hospitals or data centres.

Significant accuracy and efficacy savings have been strongly evidenced through hyperscale data centre adoption. Overall construction sector benefits through technology enabled transformation are expected to be phenomenal locally, nationally and internationally.

In 2019, the government announced the Hospital Infrastructure Plan, a five-year programme of investment in health infrastructure, including building 40 new hospitals, which will deliver world-class facilities to meet the changing needs and rising demands facing the NHS. This programme will rely on innovation to be successful, in particular the adoption of new technologies both in design and build are crucial, as current approaches are time-consuming, ineffective, costly and out of date.

This KTP will be delivered in partnership with UCL’s world-leading Bartlett School of Sustainable Construction and Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA), with support from UCL Innovation & Enterprise. It will examine how Engineering-Grade Augmented Reality (AR) can help to bring infamously complex construction projects in on-time and on-budget, using hospitals as case studies. Case studies will feed into XYZ Reality’s overarching aim to enable transformation in the construction sector through the demonstration of benefits, such as improving productivity and efficiency, reducing waste and developing sustainable approaches.

Dr Grant Mills, Faculty Lead for Health and Associate Professor, said: “Hospitals are complex construction environments because of the sheer range of MEP services involved. This often leads to clashes and errors in the build phase, and the need for expensive and time-consuming re-work.”

Prof Duncan Wilson, Professor of Connected Environments in UCL Bartlett CASA, added: “This KTP grant offers us an important opportunity to understand how AR can help different users interact digitally with the environment in novel ways, and by doing so improve productivity, and deliver time and cost savings.”

XYZ Reality’s founder and CEO David Mitchell said: “We’re thrilled to have been selected for the KTP grant and delighted at partnering with UCL on this project. Our Engineering- Grade AR technology is already being deployed on construction projects with the same levels of complexity as hospital builds, and I’m pleased to say that it is generating significant time and cost savings.”

David continues: I’m passionate about supporting the NHS, so I’m glad that this research will enable us to fully understand the benefits that our technology can offer these specific projects, and help those constructing UK hospitals to build it right, first time.”

For more information on XYZ Reality, please visit www.xyzreality.com.

For more information, please contact Claire Quinton-Tulloch on claire@transatlanticent.com or +44(0)7989419827.

Quote from Grant Funder:

Mohan Ahad, Knowledge Transfer Advisor, Knowledge Transfer Network, shares: “This is a very exciting project, which will demonstrate how Augmented Reality can reduce waste and increase productivity in the construction sector. I look forward to working with XYZ and UCL on this transformative concept.”

About XYZ Reality

XYZ Reality is the company behind HoloSite, the world’s first Engineering Grade Augmented Reality system. The company is on a mission to eliminate 2D in its entirety, empowering construction teams to Build it Right, First Time.

Purpose built for the construction sector, HoloSite enables site teams to view and position holograms of design models to millimetre accuracy. The AR hardhat solution is making a huge dent on the 77 percent of megaprojects that overrun globally. It has brought efficiency to the building process by eliminating errors, reducing rework and delivering on time.

The product has been deployed across complex mission critical projects in Europe, including data centres, airports and hospitals.

Named the UK’s third hottest startup and one of the Top 3 construction technology firms, XYZ Reality is committed to supporting the construction industry in developing technology to boost productivity and bring efficiency to the sector.

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6 Theft-Preventing Tips from Industry Experts that Facility Managers Need to Know

With businesses reopening to the public and employees returning to the office, it’s paramount that facility managers know how to keep all premises safe and secure from any unlawful activity.

Theft and business crimes make up 20% of all crime in the UK1. This causes great distress to business owners and can lead to commercial failure. To help companies prepare for coming out of lockdown, safety and security specialists Reece Enterprise, have shared their top seven tips to preventing theft that all facility managers need to know.

  1. Risk Assessment

To mitigate the risk of being subject to theft crime, the first step businesses need to take is conducting a risk assessment. This will help to identify any potential hazards that may occur within the organisation so the board can identify what to prioritise safety wise. This can involve any security aspect from defective security cameras or blind spots to faulty locks or windows.

Risk assessments should be undertaken regularly, at least once a year. A further review is recommended once any changes have been made to business equipment, materials, processes, or people. This is also advised after accidents occur, to ensure their validity.

  1. Employee Training

As stakeholders, employees are a critical part of any business and play a key role in keeping their workplaces safe and protected. Companies should always carry out full background and employment history checks before hiring people if possible. Once hired, security guidelines and theft policies should be clearly explained during employee inductions.

Managers can help to mitigate the risk of internal theft by encouraging staff accountability. There are several actions that can be taken to enforce this, such as enacting policy that requires employees to keep laptops and equipment locked and password protected, encouraging employees to report suspicious activity, and by giving specific access, (for example to a cupboard of stationary) to named employees.

  1. Keeping Everything Locked, Keys Included

Managers can further minimise risk of theft by ensuring valuable items are locked up, making sure that doors, safes and storage spaces are locked, and by safely storing keys in one secure place, like a reliable key cabinet from Reece Enterprise. From fire-resistant to free-standing, key or wall mounted, with a key or padlock, there are multiple cabinets to choose from that are sure to suit your business needs.

Adding additional locks to doors and shutters or grilles to windows can give further protection.

  1. Surveillance Cameras

Use of security cameras, such as CCTV, is one of the most common practices that businesses use to fight criminal activity in the UK. Although data protection rules apply for the use of cameras, they are an excellent tool for deterring burglars. They are particularly effective as they provide evidence and visibility. When operating with small budgets, consider installing a limited number of surveillance cameras in the most high-risk areas. Security mirrors in blind spots are also another good alternative. This will create a robust security system for the business.

  1. Keeping Records

Another key factor in dealing with theft is identifying the unusual activity in the first place. Being organised and staying on top of stock management within the organisation is essential. Track all your inventory, keep on top of your paperwork, and use tags and labels with serial numbers for all the important pieces of equipment to make sure nothing gets lost.

6. Installing Alarms

Alarms are one of the most traditional and prevalent types of security system. Alarm systems and security lighting are a go-to measure for discouraging intruders and having them in place can also help to lower insurance premium costs. Consider setting up a BS 4737-4.3:1988 intruder alarm system, this is part of the general requirements that companies need to comply with in accordance with the National Security Inspectorate (NSI) and therefore should be considered. Once set up, managers are advised to arrange for the alarms to be regularly tested and maintained.

Source 1https://www.startupdonut.co.uk/business-premises/premises-security/ten-ways-to-protect-your-business-from-crime

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Discover Street Scenes From The Past With The Decades Digital Tool

Taking a walk back to days gone by could not be easier thanks to a new digital tool developed by UK House Builder, Barratt Homes. The tool has been created to celebrate Barratt Homes building their 500,000 home and shows you just how things have changed since 1958 when Barratt first burst onto the scene.

The Decades project starts back in the 1960s, over 60 years ago! It will show you the fashion, cars, and display some iconic events from the decade. Once you have seen and read about the 60’s a click of a button will then take you across to the 1970’s, and the project ends in the 2020’s during a time where everyone in the world saw a change with the pandemic better known as COVID-19.

The ‘Barratt Homes Through The Decades‘ tool also takes a look at house prices as you move through the decades, starting at mere £2,500 on average back in the 1960s for a house, and in just 40 years booming into the £150,000 region by the mid 2000’s during the property boom.

David Thomas, Chief Executive of Barratt Developments, said: “To mark the significant milestone of completing our 500,000th home, we wanted to take a look back at how much things have evolved over the past seven decades.

“This digital tool will take viewers on a journey from the 1960s right up to today so they can explore what made each era so iconic.

“Creating communities has been a lasting legacy of ours since 1958 when Sir Lawrie Barratt first founded Barratt Homes and we are extremely proud of our contribution to society over the past 60 years. We now look forward to a new era of house building, one rightly shaped by the green agenda but still very much grounded in community.”

Barratt has always had quality at the forefront of its mind. In 2020, it was awarded the maximum five-star rating from its customers (HBF) for the 11th year in a row following the results of the annual Home Builders Federation satisfaction survey.

Looking to the future of housebuilding and its next 500,000 homes, Barratt has pledged its commitment to create a positive environmental, social, and economic legacy for future generations. For more information on any Barratt or David Wilson Homes developments nearby, visit www.barratthomes.co.uk or www.dwh.co.uk.

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Aarsleff Ground Engineering AB execute the pile foundations for the Varberg to Borås railway upgrade scheme in Sweden.

Trafikverket, The Swedish Transport Administration, is upgrading and modernising the railway from Varberg to Borås by replacing tracks, overhead line and signal-box and introducing remote control on selected stretches of line. This will reduce operational disruptions and create a modern, robust, and reliable railway system from the south east coast of Sweden towards the North.

On behalf of main contractor Leonhard Weiss Gmbh, the Aarsleff collaboration, comprising Aarsleff Ground Engineering, Per Aarsleff A/S’ Construction Segment, Aarsleff Rail A/S and their Swedish sister company Anker AB are responsible for the design and build of the entire catenary system, from the deepest foundation to the wires and cables 8 meters above ground.

Aarsleff’s ground engineering team commenced on site in mid-April 2021 and will follow a piling program scheduled to complete before the festive season. During this period, Aarsleff will install approximately 1500No. reinforced precast concrete piles with additional foundations installed to strengthen the cable system.

At time of writing, Aarsleff has so far received 30% of the designed foundations, and are currently executing one of the foundation types, reinforced precast piles, with others to follow in August. Once the precast piles are installed, a concrete mixture is poured through and around the pile to ensure it stays erect out of the ground.

Due to the differing ground conditions on site (clay, gytie, peat, rocks, stone), Aarsleff will be installing a variety of foundations from short 4m long precast piles of a 355mm diameter, to 6m long piles with a 555mm diameter. In some cases, Aarsleff will install duct foundations with a foot whereby excavation is required into the ground. A pile foot consists of a 10-12m long iron profile inserted through the pile and into the ground to increase its stability in strong winds. These are special piles and will be installed in a limited number.

During Aarsleff’s work from the track, the existing power lines are turned off every evening. This provides Aarsleff with only a certain amount of time to be in and out – particularly challenging when multiple shifts are restricted to a 5-hour working window.

Aarsleff are running on full production currently, installing up to 9No. piles in a day on a weekend, and up to 5No. piles in the weekday. The aim is to execute 35No. foundations every week, which is hoped to increase as operations become more mature. The distance from the outer rail edge to the foundation must also live up to the safety regulations when placed before installation.

The site is restricted by overhead lines running directly over where the foundations need to be installed. The decision was made to mount hooks onto the existing mast and extend the cables out some 1-1.5 metres. This operation is running smoothly, providing Aarsleff with the space required to carry out the piling operations both safely and efficiently.

To install the foundations, Aarsleff deployed a train with 8 separate units. For the main works, Aarsleff utilise the compressor component for the drill, and a crane to lift and

handle the piles. Indeed, from the 21st of May Aarsleff will be renting a train with a drilling rig mounted on to complete the rest of the foundations on the scheme. In general, regulations in Sweden state that a railroad machine’s engine must conform to Eurocode 5 whereby the engine has to be 6 years old or less to ensure the pollution is as minimal as possible.

Aarsleff adopt smart use of technology when working on railway schemes, integrating an advanced cloud-platform system to organise their people, project data and location intelligence to ensure greater connectivity, project management, and transparency for the entire project team. Brian Gravgaard, Per Aarsleff A/S’ Project Manager overseeing the projects start-up phase said: “This project marks a true one company collaboration between so many countries and departments. When a large-scale project requires multiple specialist solutions, our companies, and divisions within the Aarsleff group collaborate to draw experience from each other and create value for the customer. I take pride knowing that our companies will have helped play a fundamental part in ensuring a progressive, resilient and future-fit railway system in Sweden”.

Aarsleff Ground Engineering AB is the Swedish subsidiary of the Danish construction company Per Aarsleff A/S and one of Sweden’s leading ground engineering and piling companies. Aarsleff’s strategy and philosophy for the future has resulted in the wholly owned subsidiary Centrum Pile AB which has one of the most modern facilities for prefabricated concrete piles in Sweden.

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Architectural ironmongery expert lifts the latch on wider industry standards

The Guild of Architectural Ironmongers (GAI) is helping to shape the competency frameworks for the wider construction products industry as part of the drive towards clearer and more robust fire safety standards.

Douglas Masterson, technical manager at the GAI, has been appointed as co-chair of Working Group 12, alongside Hanna Clarke, digital and policy manager at the Construction Products Association (CPA). He has represented the GAI in that group since its inception in October 2018 and was appointed as deputy chair of it in April 2020, at which time he also became a member of the Competence Steering Group (CSG).

The Steering Group on Competences for Building a Safer Future and its 12 sub-groups – set up to implement the recommendations of the Hackitt Review – have been continuing to look at specialist areas of construction practice. The groups consist of representatives from installers, fire, housing, construction and professional organisations from within the industry. Working Group 12 is focussing on competency in the construction products sector.

Douglas Masterson said:

“This role puts the GAI at the forefront of promoting increased levels of competency for the entire construction products industry. We have been performing the same role for the door and hardware industry since 1961 and advocating increased skills and knowledge for our membership is at the heart of what we do. It is a great honour to be able to lead Working Group 12, and to also represent the wider industry at the Competence Steering Group.”

The Setting the Bar report, published in October 2020, set out the competence requirements for those working on higher-risk residential buildings. As part of this, Working Group 12 discussed the construction product competency matrix that should be launched later this year.

Douglas and Hanna have taken over the chairman role from Peter Caplehorn, chief executive of the CPA. Joe Cilia, technical director at the Finishes and Interior Sector (FIS), will replace Douglas as deputy chair.

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What You Need To Consider If Your Contractor Goes Bust

As a result of the pandemic, we have seen, and advised on, numerous instances where main contractors have downed tools or closed sites. In some cases, this has been a temporary hiatus to construction works as we and our client employers have persuaded or assisted main contractors to return to site. Posted via Industry Today. Follow us on Twitter @IndustryToday Continue Reading

Industrial Conveyor Belts and their Applications

You may be thinking that a conveyor belt will help your assembly line more efficiently. Know more about this on this page here. However, with so many choices out there, it’s essential to determine which one will fill your needs in the company.

If you want to make a wiser purchase, it’s important to know the basic types out there and try to match them with your business applications. Know that the suitable kinds of belts can streamline your entire assembly line, increase your production, add to your profit margin, and result in company growth. To begin with, here are some of the basic types that you need to know about.

1. Roller Beds

The surface of the roller beds has the purpose of matching your production. They have specific speeds and weights that can move the products along the assembly line. The shorter ones may consist of two rollers. However, when you need the lengthier ones and as the distance between the two increases, you may need more rollers for the more efficient function of the belt.

Roller bed set-ups are great when you need the products to be loaded with the help of gravity. This is because the mechanical way of loading may damage and cause mechanical shock to the installed rollers. These are great for companies that are transporting most of their products over long distances to reduce friction along the way.

2. Flat Types

The flat varieties are one of the most common systems today. They are available in many conveyor belt suppliers that can provide you with the specifications that you need. Flat belts are very convenient when you’re transferring within your facilities and doing internal conveyance. They are moved by a series of pulleys made from nylon, polyester, or other synthetic fabrics.

The products are placed on top of the flat conveyor belt, and they are carried from one designated place to another. Since these can be made from synthetic fibers or natural materials, they can be versatile. Some of the optional features to know about include the nose bars and center drivers that can help depending on the operation.

Some of the applications for flat types are slow assembly areas, wash-down lines, and other industrial environments. When they are fitted with the right belts, they can transport irregularly shaped products without damages.

3. Modular Varieties

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While the flat belts are utilizing continuous and single loops, the modular ones use countless interlocked pieces made up of hard plastics. These segments are often replaced and individually removed, which contrasts with discarding the entire conveyor belt when you want to replace one part.

They can be easier to clean, are resistant to abrasive and sharp materials, and have easy maintenance. You can also repair them quickly if they get damaged.

The conveyors for modular types are very good for applications like traveling on corners. They can be used to go around the corner of the room, on inclines, declines, and straight lines while simultaneously utilizing the same motor.

Technically, this feat can also be possible with other types. However, they can be achieved after spending a lot on too many customizations. The modular plastic belts allow owners to have the design that they wanted without compromising the tracking of everything. An example is using a modular belt for more support in cardboard boxes, soft plastic boxes, and shrink-wrapped goods.

These are common in many food industries because they can be cleaned easily. Know more about the roles of conveyor belts in the food industry on this site here: http://locker.com.au/blog/general-industrial/conveyor-belts-and-their-role-in-the-food-industry/. The spacing of the segments is possible so they can achieve more adjustments. The plastic composition makes it easier for manufacturers to detect metal if it’s present in the items.

4. Cleated Types

Cleated have vertical barriers in their overall forms. The cleats secure some of the loose products they are transporting, making them a barrier to declines and inclines. There’s consistent spacing in the overall transportation and between the items. Some of the different shapes that you can encounter with cleats include the following:

Forward-Leaning Capital L. This has a broad base that is resistant to leverage forces. Some of the shapes have curved designs that enable them to scoop the suitable granules. This is the type that can carry medium or lightweight bulk materials up the steep inclines.

Inverted Capital T. This type has a perpendicular design and surface. It provides flexibility and support in handling delicate items. This is suited to the transportation of small parts, light-duty jobs, food products, and packaged items.

Inverted V. The inverted V cleats are usually about two inches in height, allowing the troughing results. They are great in transporting materials that are heavy, abrasive, and large because they can withstand heavier impacts.

Pegs and Lugs. These are the kinds that can be used for the accommodation of the specific needs of the company. They are used for the transportation of washed fruits, promote run-offs of liquids, and more. They are considered cost-efficient by many manufacturers because they don’t need to be supported throughout the conveyor belt width. Some are positioned so that they can move the products selectively when they exceed a given size.

Some of the offshoots to know about are elevator belts. They are designed specifically for scoops or spaced partitions where the designs are used to carry loose materials on steeper inclines.

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How to choose the best heavy industry recruitment agency

So, you’ve decided to outsource and utilise the help of an external recruitment agency to hire new staff for your business, but you don’t know where to begin. A specialised recruitment agency can alleviate the burden and source the perfect candidate on your behalf for a fraction of the cost and time of traditional in-house recruitment methods. This article will cover several factors worth taking into consideration when trying to navigate the minefield of heavy industry recruitment agencies.

  1. Set a budget

It is important to set yourself a suitable recruitment budget when shopping around for a specialised recruitment agency perfectly tailored towards the needs and goals of the business as they don’t come cheap. Most agencies advertise costs upfront on their website or via a quick phone call as well as the price of any additional add-ons you may require. An Engineering Recruitment Agency may also offer a number of guarantees, such as a recruitment guarantee, which protects the business from any new hires that may resign prematurely.

  • Do your research

To ensure you have chosen the best recruitment agency for your business, you must do your homework. An Engineering Recruitment Agency must be able to deliver the perfect candidate for a particular role – even those trickier hard-to-fill skillsets – and instil a sense of confidence in you that will inspire you to revisit their services during any future recruitment drives. Familiarise yourself with any previous client and candidate testimonials, feedback and track record and decide whether this particular agency would be a good fit for your business. If you are still unsure, it may also be worth reaching out to personnel or inviting the agency in for a meeting or sales pitch in an attempt to gauge whether or not the services they offer would actually benefit your company. This also gives you the opportunity to ask any follow up questions in person that could determine whether or not you decide to choose this particular agency over another.

  • Be clear about what you want

Being clear about what you are looking for in a potential future employee from the very onset can reduce the risk of miscommunication and loss of productivity down the line. Hiring the wrong person for any role can cost a company thousands in training and payroll fees and so it is crucial steps are taken to prevent this situation from happening as early as possible. Specialised recruitment consultants possess the necessary skills and expertise to be able to match any job seeker within their database to a suitable position that would complement their relevant skills and experience. If the job description is clear and concise from the beginning, a recruiter should have no problem in finding the right candidate to fill the role.

Hiring the best candidate for the job can be a tiring and costly experience so investing in a specialised heavy industry recruitment agency may be the answer to your staffing needs.

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