11 Essential Civil Engineering Apps [Updated 2019]:
- FrameDesign, LetsConstruct, 4.5/5 (4,024 reviews)
- Autodesk Forge (ForceEffect retired)
- AutoCAD mobile
- AndTruss2D, TeoBou, 4/5 (704 reviews)
- Civil Engineering Pack, Sparkle Solutions, $9.49, 4/5 (28 reviews)
- Quick Civil, Holmes Apps, $1.99, 4.75/5 (12 reviews)
- Civil Engineering Study Notes, Therithal Info, 4.2/5 (35 reviews)
- WolframAlpha, Wolfram Group, $2.99, 4.6/5 (35,944 reviews)
- Android Wabbitemu, Buckeye Dude, 4/5 (25,362 reviews)
- Office Lens, Microsoft, 4.8/5 (329,206 reviews)
- Electrodroid, IODEMA Srl, 4.6/5 (155948 reviews)
As more and more mobile applications are being developed and downloaded every day, the convenience of being able to work while on the go brings more demand to the smartphone and tablet market, which is consistently on the rise.
As many workforces are now benefiting from mobile technology, the world of engineering apps, including conversion calculators, reference guides, CAD viewers, and mechanical references is also on the rise to make work-related tasks in the field simple and quick.
More and more, the laptop is left at the office, while tablets and smartphones are used to tackle most on-the-go job requirements. Take, for example, a civil engineer on site at a job who needs to quickly view a 3D architectural rendition or a calculation to find out the estimated requirement of a specific material. With civil engineering-based apps, these tasks now only take a few seconds with the swipe of a finger.
This article highlights mobile and web apps for civil engineers and engineering students alike that are designed to help simplify your work; on the go, in the field, or from home. The lists include apps that work for either iOS, Android, or both.
6 ENGINEERING APPS FOR CIVIL ENGINEERS
Fast and transparent calculations with this Finite Element Method (FEM) app offer users an opportunity to explore 2D frame designs using Finite Elements Analysis (FEA). It accepts inputs in both graphical and textual format and can be especially useful for students with their projects and assignments by cross-referencing values and results.
This app is easy to read and saves most of the equations and numbers for a separate menu and although it lacks the ability to take notes, Frame Design does all the work for you.
By Autodesk Inc.
Update: Autodesk has “retired” this web app in order to focus on their Forge web app platform for civil engineers. Please go to the Forge page for more information.
Autodesk ForceEffect can do quick engineering calculations and simulations directly on your mobile device. It has real-time solving capabilities and provides CAD integration that can be easily done from its intuitive interface.
One handy element of the app is the capability of checking the viability of a structure by simply capturing an image of the structure that you want to analyze or upload it. The app then shows you all the information required using gestures.
If you have problems understanding or figuring out how to use the app, it provides online video tutorials to help you get started, as well as sample design templates.
By Autodesk Inc.
AutoCAD brings you a free app that is useful for reviewing and rated high for its connectivity, sharing capabilities, and file security. The paid version of this app features layer management tools, object properties, new file creation, and extended memory for file storage.
Benefits of using AutoCAD 360 include:
- Easy-to-use interface
- Real-time cloud collaboration
- Portability for site and field visits
- DWG file compatibility
- File access for all AutoCAD products and suites
- Easy access to drawings from the cloud
By Thodoris Bougas
AndTruss2D is a simplified version of the FrameDesign app and is recommended for users with specific requirements. It is extremely user-friendly, and the in-app designs can only be laid out using keyed inputs.
Used for linear static analysis of plane trusses with the Finite Element Method, this app is useful for engineers, providing an easy-to-use graphical UI enabling you to quickly set up a static model and view the results following the analysis process.
Civil Engineering Pack
By Sparkle Solutions
This app is packed with 574 calculators and converters that relate to civil, beams, columns, piling, concrete, survey, soil and earthwork, structural engineering, bridges, highway and road, hydraulics, and timber.
These tools can accurately calculate and automatically convert with speed and ease multiple civil engineering parameters with every unit and value change.
Some of the converters covered by Unit Converter are; acceleration, angle, area, density, temperature, and force.
By Home Apps
The Quick Civil app provides fast engineering calculation results performed in English or SI units. Included calculations in the program include open channel flow, weir, orifice, and time of concentration calculations.
5 Apps Every Engineering Student Should Have
By Therithal Info
Civil Engineering in an online study course containing subjects that covers various topics, questions, and descriptions.
Some topics include:
- Engineering Mechanics
- Engineering Geology
- Mechanics of Solids
- Engineering Chemistry
- Total Quality Management
- Physics for Civil Engineering
34 reviews gave this app a 4.4-star rating, claiming there are too many ads and the app gives good feedback on the subject matter.
By Wolfram Group
WolframAlpha hails as the Wikipedia of engineering by students, computing answers and generating reports using its large collection of algorithms and data. Parts of the app uses the Siri Assistant, giving you the complete potential of the app’s computational knowledge base.
Ease of use allows users to just impute questions that are applicable to their field of study and the Alpha takes over from there, searches its database as well as organizes external sources to provide an accurate answer to the query it’s given.
Some of the fields covered by the app include:
- Statistics and data analysis
- Earth Science
- Life Sciences
- Computational Sciences
Nearly 36,000 reviews delivered WolframAlpha 4.6 stars.
“This app is a multi-faceted calculator and computer which answers all mathematical questions but also has an encyclopedic database that provides deep analyses (areas of astral bodies, life expectancies for various animals) supplying marvelous avenues of exploration.”
This android app creates accurate representations of instrumentation graphs at your fingertips on your mobile device. Who doesn’t like having a calculator handy no matter where you go or where you are located?
Use the Wabbitemu for acquiring Texas instrument graph calculators quickly, as it serves you the real deal in your lab or office.
This free PDF scanning app is the ideal tool for engineers with a need to digitize physical documents while on the go. It allocates you to take photographs of documents, crop its image, and then store it in a scanned file on your mobile device.
Convert your PDF, Word, or JPG in order to share them in emails or on social media. You can even make use of the editing features to brighten images or add a last-minute modification to your document.
By IODEMA Srl
This app has two versions; the Electrodroid and the Electrodroid Pro. At a cost, the Pro gives you an ad-free experience so that you can breeze through the database for electronic tools and references without distractions.
Electrodroid was designed to be used by electrical engineers and electronics students in search of immediate information while solving issues.
Professionals and hobbyists alike can use this app to create a mock-up of their circuit and calculate whether it will crank out the required end results. Users can employ the reference guide in the app to review needed components, look up pin-out connectors, and more.
Civil engineers are building their own apps
With automation on the rise, more and more companies are turning to electronic formatting in order to replace hard-copies of paper timesheets, inspection checklists, and reports.
Speak the language
Programming and developing an app in today’s world empowers not only engineers but anyone who can learn a couple of programming languages. A piece of cake, right?
All those YouTube video tutorials exist out there to help us learn and follow step-by-step instructions to fix your car engine, build a shed, and even the basics of developing an app for your company’s needs.
If you prefer a do-it-yourself software that will enable you to turn your paperwork into a mobile application, take a look at Association Management Software (AMS).
The AMS server takes your existing software, integrates and adds a mobile component without having to develop and deploy your own application.
Schick Civil Engineers
Schick Civil Construction is a New Zealand company on the front line, developing residential subdivisions, roads, landscaping, and other major projects. Their focus is not just on heavy-duty equipment, but also on ways to improve its company operations.
Responsible for the implementation of the AMS platform for Schick, Hendrik Van Blerk says there are benefits to the automation of business processes that are typically completed manually on paper.
“The more real-time information you get, the faster you can address operational issues,” he says. “We can re-deploy plant where it is needed most, sort out problems faster, and have real-time monitoring and reporting for improved decision-making. It’s the key to working smarter.”
App development empowers tailored solutions
Schick utilizes a plant inspection checklist they created using AMS where all plant operators complete a daily inspection check before operating heavy-duty equipment. This makes it easy for their employees abide by their role requirements, increasing effectiveness and productivity, as well as safety.
Hendrik further expresses the value of creating custom apps with the AMS mobile platform.
“We’re not an out-of-the-box client,” he says. “We have integrated the apps with other technologies we use, such as GPS, and we want to capture different types of data without complicating the interface. AMS allows us to have more than one type of form in the same app.”