Civil Engineering: Using Autocad Civil 3D

AutoCAD Civil 3D is the new software by Autodesk, which provides an ideal solution for civil engineers involved in Building Information Modeling (BIM). With the help of Civil 3D, project visualization, analysis and designing becomes quite easy. The package includes tools for 3D visualization, storm-water analysis, takeoff on quantity and analysis of geospatial aspects. Civil engineers can benefit from these tools, as they can analyze various scenarios which have the potential to occur in future, so as to optimize the final outcome of any project. Let's see some of the important features and tools of this versatile software.

The Survey Features and Tools

Civil 3D includes a complete tool box for surveyors by which they can process and adjust survey information. Survey points can be imported on to the AutoCAD drawing and new figures can be created. The survey tools lets you do interactive editing of figure vertices and helps you to identify breaklines and edit them in surface or the database of the survey. At the end, reports can be generated which highlight potential problems.

Analysis of Geospatial Aspects

AutoCAD Civil 3D provides FDO (Feature Data Objects) data access technology, which is a seamless way of accessing data of a geospatial nature from different relational databases supporting varied file formats. This seamless transfers ensures high accuracy and efficiency, which would be lost if these data had to be translated into individual GIS applications. The collected data can be edited with the usual AutoCAD commands and also there are new functions for "merge" and "split" for objects of polygon shapes. You also have "Expression Builder," which is a new tool by which you can include properties of intrinsic objects and calculation of data with the attributes.

Analysis can be done easily with the set of tools which help in generating buffers and applying trace analysis. Creating conventional maps is also easy, and you can include special features and information like zones, boundaries, types of soils and so on, with the cartography toolset. The "transparency" feature will help you blend different types of data.

Visualize in 3D and Communicate

Effective visualization in 3D is quite simple with this software, and you can store them as DWF files. These files are quite indispensable when you want to communicate your design idea to a client who cannot understand technical drawings. The models you create will have realistic rendering of materials such as concrete, gravel and asphalt.

Tools for Documentation

There are various tools in Civil 3D which makes documentation an easy process. The set of annotation tools will help you directly gain the annotation from designs and also has automatic updating feature for changes in design. The software also responds correctly to change in orientation of the view or the scale of the drawing.

The software also includes a huge library of drafting standards which are specific to different countries. This library will help you customize the style of the drawings in aspects such as increments in contour, labeling, colors and line-types.

AutoCAD Civil 3D also includes the wizard for Plans Production which automates sheet layouts and alignment of match-lines and ultimately generates the profile sheets and plans according to the layout.