The UK’s HS2 has trialled a new artificial intelligence-based carbon and cost estimating solution to decrease carbon emissions.

The technology was trialled at several HS2 locations managed by the Skanska Costain STRABAG joint venture.

The solution helps in automating building information model (BIM) processes.

It enables simulating multiple design options using different combinations and types of construction materials.

The process helps in measuring and comparing the environmental impacts and carbon emissions for each simulation and accordingly design a cost-effective and environmentally friendly construction model.

HS2 digital engineering head Sonia Zahiroddiny said: “HS2 is a project designed to support the UK’s transition to a net-zero carbon economy, so we’re extremely pleased that we can provide a live construction environment for the practical application of this new AI-enabled app.

“Innovation is at the heart of our drive to reduce carbon, and this groundbreaking solution will enable us to realise immediate efficiencies across phase one of the project, as well as building it into phase two.”

The new solution is being developed as part of an Innovate UK-funded project.

Once developed, it is expected to replace the current system that involves manually measuring 3D drawings.

A consortium of organisations led by Skanska UK is working to develop the solution.

Skanska Innovation head Vaibhav Tyagi said: “This is a fantastic example of how an innovative mindset can lead to solutions that address climate change.

“Investing in innovation is essential to produce great ideas like this. Innovation and digital integration are critical to reduce carbon and work towards net-zero emissions.”

HS2 recently selected the first five companies for its Innovation Accelerator initiative.