An inside look at Trimble’s new product suite

July 1, 2024  - By
Photo: Trimble

Photo: Trimble

From May 14 to 16, more than 1,400 attendees gathered at the Huntington Convention Center of Cleveland, Ohio for Trimble’s Innovate 2024 User Conference.

At the conference, Trimble announced its upcoming asset lifecycle management suite, Trimble Unity. The software suite offers comprehensive capabilities that enable owners to efficiently plan, design, build, operate and maintain their assets.

Trimble Unity provides an end-to-end solution that connects teams across all lifecycle phases, giving them access to critical data to make decisions. From designers, engineers and contractors to asset managers, inspection and maintenance crews, Trimble Unity offers all stakeholders visibility to reliable data across digital workflows that help foster collaboration, improve project outcomes and reduce the total costs of asset ownership.

Trimble Unity capabilities includes:

  • Trimble Unity Construct: A cloud-based construction project and program management capability that provides insights to improve process control and reduce cycle times. It is powered by Trimble e-Builder.
  • Trimble Unity Maintain: An enterprise asset management capability that streamlines work activity, planning and analysis to optimize resource allocation and infrastructure reinvestment. It is powered by Trimble Cityworks AMS, Trimble AgileAssets and Trimble Unity Work Management.
  • Trimble Unity Permit: A permitting, land management and licensing capability for streamlining public and back-office operations required to manage permits, licenses, right-of-way and code enforcement. It is powered by Trimble Cityworks PLL.
  • Trimble Connect: A connected data environment that unifies asset data in files, native file formats and 3D modes to streamline accessibility and collaboration.

In addition, Trimble Unity includes Trimble Unity Field, an all-in-one mobile application enabling field workers to design, build and maintain assets more efficiently, leading to improved productivity, reduced technology costs and improved community confidence.

GPS World met with Senior Vice President for Trimble’s Owner and Public Sector, Cyndee Hoagland, for an exclusive interview about the new product suite, how GIS plays a pivotal role in the asset management lifecycle and more.

Photo: Trimble

Photo: Trimble

What sectors can benefit from this new product suite?

For the public sector side, federal, state and local governments. Think cities, municipalities, state departments of transportation (DOTs), airports and transit authorities. For the private sector, healthcare facilities and universities.

Is Trimble adding any new capabilities to the applications within the suite?

We added a GIS capability to e-Builder along with Trimble Unity Field, so the mobile application of e-Builder is new. We did not have a capability for location-based information within the application itself, but it is now included, which is the added GIS capability.

How do data strategy and GIS play a role?

Most of our users on the enterprise asset management side are GIS-centric, having GIS and GPS experience. They recognize and understand the value of location data combined with asset data. For example, it is so much better for an inspector to know the location of bolts that need to be repaired before the work begins.

Additionally, from a GIS perspective, if you are thinking about the GPS elements, and location and spatial data relative to an asset from the planning stage, through design and construction all the way to operation and maintenance, that data can be used to more efficiently operate and maintain the asset over its lifecycle. This asset lifecycle management approach allows the owner to reduce their total cost of ownership for that asset by as much as 40%.

Do you have an example?

Let’s say a bridge costs $1 million to plan, design and construct. Historically, $3 million would then be spent on operations and maintenance across the bridge’s service life, bringing the total cost of ownership of the bridge to $4 million. However, using an asset lifecycle management approach, owners can reduce that $4 million cost by up to 40 percent, saving $1,600,000 on the total cost of ownership of that bridge.

These enormous savings are possible because owners can track the location, condition and attributes of the bridge throughout the asset lifecycle and use that information to make better decisions for managing the asset. Owners can access information such as the location of the bridge, the type of asphalt used to build it, the geometry of all the components that create that bridge and more. All that asset-specific information is available in a GIS geolocated model, which is highly valuable not just for the owner, but for the design and contractor teams along the entire asset lifecycle.

Are there benefits of using a mobile mapping platform to collect data as opposed to using a UAV?

They serve different purposes. UAVs go up in the air at key points in a project to give owners an update on the project performance and how much is getting completed.

Another way of capturing rich asset data quickly is mobile mapping and terrestrial laser scanning. What you will see, for example, is that a state DOT will have to provide information to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) relative to all their lane miles. In large scale projects, a vehicle-mounted mobile mapping system can be used to capture highly accurate and immersive asset data at highway speed. That data will then go into an asset management system, where it can help users prioritize where the road repairs need to take place.

Will artificial intelligence (AI) be integrated into this suite in the future?

AI is already being used today to transform large amounts of real-world data into information. If an owner has collected data to inspect a bridge, for example, the highly accurate and rich data from mobile mapping and UAV systems can show an owner where exactly repairs are needed. The datasets are, however, extremely large, and AI built into processing and analysis software can help reduce tedious tasks, such as extracting features. This streamlined analysis of the data helps to inform owners on how to best manage and maintain their assets.

The key capabilities of the Trimble Unity Asset Lifecycle Management Suite will be available beginning in June 2024.

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