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Dr Vicente Gonzalez

Dr Vicente Gonzalez

Highly Commended Winner 2013
Exploring the Environmental Modelling of Road Construction Operations Using Discrete-event Simulation

Research Abstract

The practical implementation of sustainable approaches is a challenge for the construction industry. There have been several research efforts to model sustainability. However, current and past modelling approaches have several limitations: they are mainly deterministic, not allowing for the dynamic and changing nature of a live construction site. 


This paper explores how a dynamic modelling framework based on discrete-event simulation, which integrates environmental and traffic models, could overcome past difficulties. The modelling framework explicitly incorporates environmental goals in the design of road construction operations in terms of the fugitive and exhaust emissions generated by construction activity and traffic conditions. A hypothetical project is studied to illustrate the use of this framework. The main results show that an optimum number of trucks and front loaders can minimise emission levels. Further research should consider multi-objective analyses involving cost, time and emission levels.


Paper published in Automation in Construction Vol.24 pp.100-110, 2012

Winner's Bios

Dr Vicente Gonzalez

University of Auckland, New Zealand

Vicente is a senior lecturer at the University of Auckland. He holds a PhD and ME in construction engineering and management from the Pontifical Catholic University of Chile. His research and professional interests include lean construction, discrete-event simulation and artificial intelligence applications in construction, as well as the development of decision-making support tools for planning and control, BIM, sustainable construction and the construction supply chain. He is the author of 47 publications including 2 books, 18 papers in world leading journals and 27 peer-reviewed conference papers. Vicente is also a member of scientific boards and reviews international journals and conferences. 

Dr Tomas Echaveguren

Universidad of Concepcion, Chile

Tomas is associate professor at the Universidad de Concepcion in Chile and holds an MSc in environmental economics from the Universidad de Concepcion and a PhD in highways management from the Catholic University of Chile. His research and professional interests focus on the roads sector and encompass highway and bridge management, pavement engineering, road safety, environmental Impact of highways, speed modelling, highway vulnerability and sustainable highway construction. His numerous published works include a book, 41 papers in leading international journals and 81 peer reviewed conference papers. Tomas is a member of scientific boards and also reviews international journals and conferences.