David Ahl, Director, Software Product Management
Valley General Construction, an Alaska-based company, won a contract to raise and pave the JSCCR (Juniper, Spruce, Cranberry, Cottonwood, and Rose) roads in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough. Laid out in a grid pattern, the roads had been embedded below grade and caused major drainage problems. Looking to gain an efficient competitive edge, Valley General used Topcon machine control systems to automate the movement of their bulldozers and excavators for the project. Before the first machine was started in the field, Topcon MAGNET® software was used in the office to create constructible models that were later carved into the earth with maximum efficiency. The job would have taken twice as long and invited more risk of delays without the connected solution that provided efficient workflow.
From breaking ground to final inspection, Topcon combines technology and innovation to meet growing infrastructure demands in construction with unmatched speed and productivity gains. Encompassing a broad range of construction application tools for design and management, building, excavation, grading, and paving, Topcon solutions empower crew members to achieve more efficient results.
“Construction companies are in pursuit of customizable software solutions that can boost communication and allow teams to work seamlessly from field to office,” said David Ahl, director of Software Product Management. The MAGNET productivity suite offers an integrated full-range of software solutions to plan, manage, and streamline project processes while increasing productivity at each stage of a project. MAGNET Field solutions, one of the mainstays of the MAGNET productivity suite, offers full field connectivity using total stations, levels, and GNSS receivers to collect survey mapping data and perform faster construction and road layout. Critical for the software workflow, MAGNET Office solutions host a wide-range of surveying, design, model building, and takeoff functionalities.
“Our software expertise originated in making field-based hardware like location sensors and large machinery work smoothly and productively for customers,” states David Ahl, director of Software Product Management. “However, today our customers are asking for more. To meet the seamless operability requested by our customers, we have had to look at the larger picture of their workflow,” says Ahl. “We have seen our customers continually re-creating 3D models from scratch based on the civil design model basis. Topcon MAGNET software is built to integrate with major players like Bentley and Autodesk, and we see this as increasing importance to bring value to customers. Connecting this design to construction workflow offers less waste and greater efficiency.”
Ahl is heading up digital transformation at Topcon, which looks to build solutions to bigger picture questions faced by Topcon hardware and software customers. Topcon is dedicated to understanding the challenges that construction companies face and provide them with the robust integration of information and technology. The company refers to this as the Intersection of Infrastructure and Technology—a conceptual crossroads—where it provides construction professionals with the advantages and know-how to be at the forefront of technological innovation to maximize efficiency so they can manage and track the work status and requirements on and off the field. “We partner with our customers and say let’s build it together,” remarks Ahl.