The concrete connected may contact you via your smartphone

TECHNICAL SOLUTION. After the concrete 2.0, a startup French has imagined a way to communicate with this material through a smartphone standard, which greatly simplifies the access to information in a building. Rolland Mélet, the director-general of 360 SmartConnect, unveiled the possibilities of this technology in the 3rd edition of the Day Expertise & Construction at Cerib.
Traceability is progressing on the construction sites. In effect, the particular becomes, little by little, vital in the construction industry, whether the origin of an item, the date of its installation or its maintenance or its technical characteristics own, including its composition in view of its recycling. “The digital revolution has been there. There has been Excel, Autocad, etc. But there were problems of versioning on construction sites, with ressaisies that dégradaient the information, “says Rolland Mélet, the director-general of 360 SmartConnect. “And then came BIM, that is to say, a 3D model coupled with a database, structured and consistent“. Only poses a problem : that of access to such information on the site. Indeed, it is difficult to equip all the stakeholders, sub-contractors including, terminal dedicated. Even if several proprietary technologies coexist, each operator could be left with several receptors, which are specific to each protocol ! As in the case of the concrete 2.0 used by Lafarge in the tower D2 to the Defence, where a detector RFID was necessary to collect data from chips embedded in the material at the time of its casting.
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The building speaks, and he has plenty of things to say !


Rolland Mélet continues : “The means of access to information must be simple, economic, without terminal specific. Hence the idea that the book itself should become the interface, and that it was to communicate with a smartphone, which today everyone has one“. Another problem, that of the life of the chips, which must be at least equivalent to that of the book, itself potentially in excess of 100 years… The patented solution 360 SmartConnect, which required 5 years of R&D, in fact based on a standard NFC (Near Field Communication) secure, which allows two “objects” to communicate between them, just through low magnetic fields, without any input of energy. The technology, derived from the RFID, is effective at very short range (a few centimeters), and transmits an amount of data not very high (between 100 and 400 kbps). “By approaching her smartphone of the surface, a Web browser window opens automatically. It controls the identity of the user and then grants access or not to a set of Web content, depending on the rights granted“, argues the director-general. The concrete thus speaks on the phone of the user.
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But what is the point ? “To develop value-added services ! The data to a value to operate“. The business leader evokes various examples, such as the technical information of the products of the construction (prefabricated elements in concrete, screed), but also on the dimensions and / or of the dates of verification visits. “A revolutionary way to manage the traceability, secure the maintenance and promote the books, “says the company. Indeed, beyond the actors of the construction, the users themselves will be able to have access to certain data selected via their smartphone placed on a contact surface reported. And 360 SmartConnect will not stop in so good way : she can already transform the chips into real sensors that are capable to instrument a building. But to get there, it will be necessary to feed in energy : “It will be necessary to make the energy harvesting, perhaps by induction, which will query the sensor regarding the state of the material that surrounds it“. A new way to listen to the building, asking him to say “33” ?


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