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Nimble Trimble

Trimble wrapped up its 5th annual conference with a record attendance and quiet confidence about the future.

“We’re still here…we’ve discovered the bottom and found a way to get out,” said Trimble chief executive Steve Berglund. “At the last conference in 2009 things looked bleak. It’s better now but not yet good.”

Trimble Dimensions 2010, the annual conference for the firm’s equipment users, attracted 2,800 delegates with a combination of customers presenting their experiences of using Trimble products and a trade fair.

“We’re still here…we’ve discovered the bottom and found a way to get out”

Steve Burglund

The conference theme was “converge, connect and collaborate”, reflecting Trimble’s desire to position itself as an office and site integration specialist.

Berglund set out this vision in an opening speech at the conference, focusing on ways of breaking down barriers between site and office using technology that enables instant communication wherever you are in the world.

“Ten years ago we were a GPS company and proud of it,” he said. “But we have moved from there to positioning, productivity and now integrated work process.”

This has been achieved through acquisition and organic growth. “Ultimately what we are doing now would not have been possible 15 years ago,” added Berglund, who went on to spell out the “concrete benefits” in collaboration. “There are cost and productivity benefits,” he said, “but you need trust, security and balance to share the good ideas.”

In the UK Trimble products are distributed through surveying equipment specialist Korec. Projects Trimble is currently working on:

  • Rotterdam port extension

Van Oord is using Trimble surveying equipment to survey existing walls and reuse concrete blocks in its project to construct a new port area in Rotterdam. The £2.4bn, port extension, known as Maasvlakte 2, is due for completion in 2013.

  • I-15 Utah design-build project

Trimble two-way data machine control technology is being successfully used on the Interstate 15 widening project in Utah.The £1.1bn project consists of adding two lanes in each direction to a 38.6km stretch of motorway. Engineers are using two-way contact with the machine operators to help achieve roadway levels and alignment.

  • Arizona Department of transport

A laser scanner mounted on top of a truck collects data as it is driven around the Arizona road network to replace existing methods of assessing and mapping its road network.

Just deserts

On the edge of Las Vegas Trimble showcased its newest products mounted on a range of construction vehicles such as bulldozers and pavers.

Each machine was fitted with the latest Trimble hardware, such as site positioning and machine control – with various total stations set around the site.

The objective of the exercise was to show how string lines and stakes are now obsolete on a construction site.

Contractors can achieve their levels with an accuracy of up to 0.05mm in 3D coordinates using GPS.

The results feed into Trimble’s latest development - the site office of the future, where there are no drawings but two large flatscreen TVs that show progress on the site.

A map of the site shows the current location and activity of each the machines on the site – a valuable tool for a site manager.

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