Computational Design
in the construction industry

Dayana Imanalina is an expert in computational design at SEQUELLO. She contributes her know-how around the harmonization of material masters. In this interview, we learn why the use of unified data models is so essential here for the construction industry.


Question: First, please tell us something about yourself. How did you come to Vienna and to SEQUELLO?

Answer: Originally, I come from Kazakhstan. I came to Vienna to study civil engineering at the Vienna University of Technology. I chose Vienna because the TU has a good international reputation and I find the culture of the city itself very interesting. At first, I found different fields of activity interesting. In the end, however, I was most interested in civil engineering – perhaps also because I liked playing with Lego when I was a child (laughs). That’s how I ended up in the construction industry and now also at SEQUELLO.


Q: What were you involved with in construction before SEQUELLO?

A: For example, I was at Schachtbau Kazakhstan studying the use of shotcrete technology in the construction of shafts. Specifically, I analyzed the effects of different types of cement on the strength and properties of shotcrete.


Q: The properties of materials also received your attention as part of your university work. What exactly is that about?

A: My work is titled “Methods of implementation of stiffness and strength properties of materials in integral design.” It was written in the context of my involvement in the Advanced Computational Design research program.

The program is concerned with how central data can be used in areas such as architecture, planning, design, and virtual reality. Part of this project involves developing a mixed reality sketching app for architectural design. It can be used to create a 3D model using planning data with the help of machine learning, which is filled with the right materials based on AI. My database provides exactly these materials.


Q: Can you explain a specific use of computational design in the construction industry?

A: In practice, an adaptive algorithmic model is created that covers all phases of the project. The model allows multiple design alternatives to be created, their costs and feasibility to be evaluated, and then changes to be made to the model at each stage without having to remodel or redraw the model. With a few keystrokes in the parametric model, the design and drawings are recalculated and modified. This way of working makes it possible to quickly visualize and analyze different variants in order to make informed decisions and avoid mistakes.
It is also easy to compare different materials. All material data of the model can be used for further processes and in the execution. If you think this through to the end, it may be that in the future, you can even process the material information of individual components directly in a platform like SEQUELLO.


Q: What prerequisites must be created for this?

A: First and foremost, the industry needs a largely standardized way of exchanging data. One can either establish a uniform standard or “map” the data. With mapping, there is a central data master against which the different data sets of the individual companies or systems stand. In this case, the central data master acts as a kind of simultaneous translator, enabling the two foreign systems to communicate with each other. I will also contribute my expertise in this area to SEQUELLO.

Q: Thank you very much for the interview and the exciting insight into the topic of computational design.

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