BIM for Building System Design and Analysis
Building Information Modeling (BIM) helps mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) engineers keep design data coordinated, minimize errors, and experience enhanced collaboration with engineering and architecture teams.
The BIM model is populated with the buildings design criteria such as temperature set points, insulating properties, lighting and sanitary specifications, terminal positions (taps, louvres, vents, etc.), etc.; all design calculations are then performed parametrically, within the model. This process can capture everything from cooling loads to water pressures and power consumption and hence the MEP systems become fully coordinated; not just physically to avoid clashes, but operationally such that if any parameter is changed it is possible to detect the implications for the overall system. With BIM any changes in parameters are carried throughout the whole model and any content, be it information or the data that is linked to it.
One of the biggest benefits of BIM for engineers is the ability to conduct clash detection between models and identify interferences during the design stage which results in fewer changes orders and prevents costly rework during construction.
MEP Engineers can achieve more sustainable designs and conduct whole building energy analysis on the BIM model allowing them to more acurately analyze heating and cooling loads and conduct air flow simulations. Through BIM they can better understand building performance, energy requirements and occupancy comfort.
"Through digital documentation, users of BIM are able to study the performance of the building, including energy efficiency and sustainable materials. BIM technology also has a fundamental role to play in the monitoring and reporting of energy efficiency and other sustainability reporting requirements" - BuildingSMART
"BIM should help integrate ongoing measurement and verification of actual building energy use and compare it to the predicted model to inform owners how their building is performing against the designed energy standard". - McGraw Hill
- Design more accurately with intelligent models
- Design complex building systems with greater efficiency
- Facilitate coordination of designs using 3D models
- Communicate ideas with integrated visualization tools
- Simulate early and often to better predict performance
- Create more coordinated construction documents
- Help resolve conflicts before construction