About the Client

The client was charged with the broad responsibility of ensuring that America’s roads, highways continue to be the safest and most technologically up-to-date. Although State, local, and tribal governments own most of the Nation’s highways, the client provides financial and technical support to them for constructing, improving, and preserving the highway system.

Business Challenge

The client had a database that contained data pertaining to soil properties across the US, gathered over the years. The client was not able to make use of the data as there was no interface to the DB. Moreover, the DB was a legacy application and could not be used for performing the operations required for modifying, analysis and reporting. The client wanted to develop an application that concerned personnel could use to gain access to a repository of information, analysis tools and past data related to soil properties and deep foundation load testing across various geographies and geographical terrains in the US. The objectives of developing the application were:

Serve as a data repository for use by:

  • States
  • Universities
  • Consultants
  • Contractors
  • Other Agencies
  • Serve as a Design Aid prior to undertaking construction projects

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Silicus Solution

The project was split into the following sections:
  • Database design and development
  • User Interface Application development
  • Data Maintenance application for application administrator

The database requirements were challenging, and Silicus database experts used Sybase to design the DB and store data that was contained in the legacy database.

The database architects used ERwin data modeling tool to manage the complex database environment. The database was structured to follow RDBMS rules using the Sybase RDBMS Database engine.

The following considerations were built in during database design:
  • Data input by providing controlled access
  • Automatic periodic Database back-up
  • Data INPUT and QUERY modules were developed to be accessed from a web based environment

UI was developed using JFC and Swing that included features for building graphical user interfaces (GUIs), adding rich graphics functionality and interactivity to Java applications. The front-end was designed to run under any OS with minimal user installation procedures. The UI was developed with features and tools to perform complex analysis pertaining to soil properties and foundation load testing.

A maintenance module was developed for the application administrator to easily manage the application. The application allowed the administrator to have visibility over and manage the following aspects of the application:

  • The web server
  • Data entry
  • Data access control
  • Database maintenance

Technologies Used

development toolkit
ERwin for data modeling
Development Environment
api liabraries
Api & Libraries
JFC and Swing for UI
Java / J2EE, Java Script

Client Benefits

Robust database, application design for greater collaboration and analysis
  • Silicus designed the database engine using Sybase, with a robust data model. The database could handle complex data processing, analysis and output requirements
  • The application brought together government agencies, state agencies, universities etc and provided them with specialized tools and user friendly navigation to access the repository of information for research and analysis
  • The application facilitated greater collaboration between stakeholders and more importantly, higher reliability of highway construction

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