Modeling time-constraints in construction operations through simulation

Hong Zhang, Heng Li, Ming Lu

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Construction operations often face time constraints that influence the execution of activities, which are not addressed enough when modeling through general discrete-event simulation. This paper describes a simulation-based methodology to handle the time constraints including the cyclical break, preemption, and overtime use. In consideration of the variable number of breaks or variable break duration for different activities, an algorithm to determine the execution of the time-constrained activities is proposed, in which the concepts of time cycle and time window are introduced. The proposed algorithm is incorporated with an activity scanning simulation strategy to develop a construction simulation for modeling the time-constrained construction operations. Some examples are presented to illustrate and validate the algorithm, and highlight the effectiveness of the developed construction simulation. The study provides an alternative to improve construction simulation in modeling of the time-constrained construction operations and is expected to assist researchers or practitioners at analyzing or planning construction operations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)545-554
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Construction Engineering and Management
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2008


  • Constraints
  • Construction management
  • Simulation
  • Time factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Industrial relations
  • Strategy and Management

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