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Digital Stockpile Management

Digital Stockpile Management

What is Digital Stockpile Management?

How highway agencies measure the size of stockpiles of materials, such as earthwork, aggregates, salt, and debris.

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More about Digital Stockpile Management

IV creates a virtual world in which to model projects accurately in 3D, then render videos and images as well as immersive visualizations to create interactive simulation products. IV models are built from existing and proposed data, including agency design files (i.e., a Microstation roadway surface), while a game engine powers real-time presentation. When optimized with adjacent infrastructure to produce performance simulation, touch screen kiosks and virtual reality (VR) applications can provide a virtual helicopter tour over a proposed project, for instance.

Project NEON, Nevada's largest and most expensive public works project ever, was the catalyst for the initiative. IV helped convey complex planning and design scenarios to the public while helping project development personnel identify and resolve design and construction challenges, such as site impacts and right of way, geometric, and line-of-sight issues. IV products allowed the traveling public, homeowners, and businesses to see the potential impact of the project on their interests, while addressing their concerns and those of regulatory agencies about safety and environmental impact. As a result, IV vastly enhanced interagency coordination, regulatory review, and approval.

IV supplies much more freedom of camera movement than typical state-of-the-practice project visualizations, which provide views from specific angles. That enables non-outreach products like technical clarity visuals, graphics for related legal cases, landscaping details, and more. While conventional visualizations render various images for delivery via video files from which models are constructed for a given purpose, rapid, real time rendering through IV’s game engine technology eliminates the need to remodel, bringing its overall cost in line with traditional 3D visualization.

Digital Stockpile Management

Highway agencies measure the size of stockpiles of materials, such as earthwork, aggregates, salt, and debris. They track their stockpiles for a variety of reasons: inventory management, environmental, compliance, construction, and operations planning. The agencies have traditionally relied on either simple estimating techniques, such as walking wheels, bills of landing, planimetries etc., or resource-intensive survey grade measurements. Nevertheless, the traditional techniques of stockpile measurements are more expensive, less accurate, less efficient, and time-consuming. Current materials management practices are improving at a remarkable pace due to recent innovations in digital technologies. In this context, AASHTO Innovation Initiative is currently supporting the adoption of a focus technology “Digital Stockpile Management (DSM)”. DSM is a digital management process to measure and analyze material quantities efficiently, accurately, and consistently in real time.

The available digital technologies include smartphone applications, unmanned aerial systems, fixed wing aircraft photogrammetry, terrestrial laser scanning and mapping, and cloud-based platforms which are used in place of and, in some cases, in conjunction with traditional methods. The DSM technologies facilitate capture, transfer and storage of real-time measurements of stockpiles which can be quickly calculated, verified, analyzed, and reported. The benefits of DSM include improved process efficiency, increased accuracy and consistency, cost savings, enhanced safety of field staff, better management for erosion control and maintenance, and increased accountability.

Resources

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Contacts

Paul Rieger (Chair)
Billings/Glendive CESB Reviewer
Montana Department of Transportation
Phone: 406-208-4363

Christopher Glantz
Deputy State Surveyor​
Oregon Department of Transportation
Phone: 503-986-3540​

Daryl Starkes
Materials Management Section Director
Texas Department of Transportation
Phone: 512-658-1367

Leighann Heine
Special Projects Coord/Inventory Specialist
Texas Department of Transportation
Phone: 210-753-1743

Frances Fletcher
Materials Management Section Inventory Supervisor
Texas Department of Transportation
Phone: 903-900-8555

Travis Long
Chief of Surveys
West Virginia Department of Transportation
Phone: 304-414-6457​