Innovating to change and modernise

The focus of our construction engineering assignments is subsoil data. We are more convinced than ever that the power of these data, once aggregated and considered in context, is the key to our being able to effectively support our customers in their projects.

Still faithful to our pioneering spirit, we have chosen to adopt a position as initiators and masters of the inevitable digital disruption that is coming in our branch of activity!

We believe that by placing data at the heart of our digital transformation and integrating the 4.0 dimension into our technical practices, we can gain in terms of added value, efficiency and agility, whilst developing a new approach to our skills and areas of expertise for our employees and a new relationship for and with our customers.

Our management committee are committed to achieving this vision. We are also able to draw on a historical data source containing more than 1.5 million survey points, on the choice of reliable technical partners and the emergence of new profiles within the Group (digital transformation project manager, data scientists, data analysts, data engineers, etc.).

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Enter the 4.0 dimension

At the heart of our digital revolution: subsoil data!

Once aggregated and considered in context, these data, thanks to the power they generate, are more than ever the key to our being able to effectively support our customers in their projects.

It is entirely logical that these data should be the starting point for deploying a new value chain for our engineering and construction activities:

  • drawing on the notions of prediction, artificial intelligence, automationand the cloud,
  • fostering agility, interaction, interoperability
  • using the BIMprocess and digital mock-ups

See our video on the 4.0 dimension!

SOLSCORE: our analysis, statistical geotechnical modelling and decision aid tool

Containing 1.5 million test bores, our historical database provides a fertile soil for our digital tool SOLSCORE to grow in, and sows the seeds for an artificial intelligence strategy.

Using our survey data statistics and algorithms, SOLSCORE is able to deliver reliable, secure and optimised recommendations.

  • SOLSCORE proposes a statistical geotechnical model, which is progressively integrating artificial intelligence. In summer 2021, over the data from 450,000 test bores were integrated into our platform.
  • We are now working to integrate this information into a decision aid tool, to support property developers and construction professionals from when they start planning to buy land. From that point on, you will be able to get a first idea about the quality of the soil.
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BIM and digital mock-ups: transcribing and visualising data

We are extending our BIM skills to all our areas of activity, in particular by transcribing data acquired in the field and technical data into interoperable deliverables.

For we are convinced that these deliverables will soon become a prerequisite in data visualisation, whatever the scale of the project or the area of technical expertise involved. For example:

  • Structures: production of mock-ups based on the construction studies
  • Geotechnical engineering, environment, hydrogeology: integration into a digital mock-up of the subsurface conditions information and the design of the structures

From tablet to web applications: acquisition and circulation of data

Field data: connecting teams

Our first generation of tablets, introduced in 2014, enabled us, over several years, to build up a precious body of experience in using digital devices in the field.

In 2022, we completely overhauled our approach to give our teams in the field and in the office an even higher level of connection with a complete investigation management system.

With over 500 users, this new application, which works on the tablet and in the cloud, allows data to be transferred in real time between the field and the office and the adaptation of the reconnaissance operations.

It encompasses our geotechnical, environmental and hydrogeological data and is gradually being extended to all our other areas of expertise - and even real-time integration of information for our customers.

Processing of borehole and in situ test data

We are upgrading our tools towards web applications at every stage of our production chain and we are enabling them to communicate with each other.

The first brick in the edifice is the SoilCloud web app, which allows us to capitalise on the Group's geotechnical, hydrogeological and environmental data. Between January and July 2021, 5,000 projects, 25,000 test bores including 8,000 pressuremeter bores and 55,000 pressuremeter tests were integrated into the application by Fondasol's users.

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Design calculation tools

Based on Fondasol's decades of experience in calculation, PYXIS is the code name of our new web application that brings together all our calculation tools used for geotechnical modelling.

A flexible, didactic, interoperable cloud solution, PYXIS offers a palette of tools for everyday use for engineering calculations and specific test, and comparative calculation tools across several areas of expertise (foundations, hydrogeology, stability, seismic, etc.).

CLEA: the basis of data acquisition

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CLEA is our connected, lightweight, electric, ergonomic, standalone drilling unit project.

After a feasibility study, a test phase lasting almost a year was initiated in summer 2021 for the batteries, using one of our drilling rigs equipped with electric actuators on all the elements that allow us to drill our boreholes.

The tests in different situations having been conclusive, the feasibility study for a fully electric prototype was launched in summer 2022. The plan is now to make all operations electric and to optimise the batteries to ensure they can be managed over the long term.

Ergonomics is also an integral part of the prototype study, with a general reflection on the overall organisation of the drilling unit, including all the operations involved in an investigation: mobilisation-demobilisation of the equipment, setting up at the survey point and the drilling phase itself.

In the long term, CLEA will also be capable of adapting in real time to the characteristics of the soils encountered by analysing the drilling parameters.