Voorbij Funderingstechniek: “Optimising pile plans using VIKTOR saves money”

In collaboration with Voorbij Funderingstechniek, several modules have been built on the VIKTOR platform that support Voorbij in optimizing various processes and innovative applications. A starting point is the (re)design of pile foundations.

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Optimization of the pile plan saves the client a lot of money

Voorbij often receives only a simple initial design. From their expertise and experience, they see opportunities here to further optimise it, for example by including the variance of the soil in the design process in a smarter way. Optimisation can also often be done, by cleverly grouping CPT’s and including these groups in the calculations, or, for example, by changing to an alternative pile system. If this can be done quickly and properly, customers can be provided with optimised pile plans faster; that saves a lot of money for the client.

Mapping the optimization process together

First, the process was properly mapped out together with Voorbij’s geotechnical engineers, especially when it comes to visualisations. For example, the user wants to quickly view the friction zones of uploaded CPT’s and wants to view several CPT’s simultaneously. In addition, there are other functionalities that help the users, such as changing the interpretation of several CPT’s at once. The main goal is that the application itself is able to generate a pile plan optimised according to cost, and based on the soil structure and with variable parameters such as groupings, pile tip levels and pile types. Voorbij has developed a method to generate groupings from a set of rules, for which VIKTOR developers have written the underlying algorithm.

As a user, Voorbij has set requirements that are specific to their process. A few examples: when optimising, they can indicate the upper and lower limits of pile tip levels, link them to Technosoft, have the design generated in a feasible manner, adjust the limit value, see interactive load-bearing charts and visualise piles in combination with the CPT’s.

An area populated with CPT’s, within the Voorbij module in VIKTOR. Based on these CPT’s and the required bearing capacity, the application can automatically generate a pile plan optimised for cost. For this optimisation, it takes soil layout and other parameters such as grouping, pile tip levels and pile types into account.

Customized application quickly realized

Since the VIKTOR platform already has the generic building blocks available to configure such an application, it only takes four sprints to build a professional custom application. Even though the time-to-delivery is small, the value that is realized with the application great for both the clients and Voorbij itself.

VIKTOR applications are widely used

In order to achieve good optimisations, it is important to fully automate (part of) the process and build a usable application for end users. This is achieved by combining parametric design, knowledge-based rules, integrations with external software packages, Excel sheets and other models, and making this all accessible online. The VIKTOR platform is built to do exactly this and provide the building blocks for it. The platform allows an engineer with basic programming knowledge to easily and quickly build professional applications, which can be launched immediately and can be used by all team members involved. It is now widely used in the sector. For example, the platform currently plays an important role in the design phase of the big ‘De Groene Boog’ project.

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Digital building blocks for geotechnical engineering

The digital transformation is currently leaving no sector untouched. The combination of using data and digital technologies cleverly also offers many opportunities in the Construction and Infrastructure sectors. The benefits seem obvious. Subject-matter specialists no longer have to make manual repetitive calculations or analyses. This saves time and is more efficient, which reduces costs. Automation offers the possibility to not only calculate a greater number of scenarios, but also more quickly, with better quality and fewer risks as a result. At the same time, the digital transformation does not always run smoothly. Developments are taking longer than planned and expected, and adoption is slow. Sometimes it looks like a minefield. But how do you unlock this potential as a sector? A toolbox with digital building blocks that offers usable solutions is already providing geotechnical engineering with the answer to many digital challenges.

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