BIM: The Future of AEC Industry
BIM: The Future of AEC Industry
Gone are the days when engineers and architects use to roam around on the construction site with a pencil and paper to inspect if everything is going normal or not. We live in technological world and today everything is digital. Global trends are making infrastructural projects more complex and advancement in technology is helping the industry professionals to pace up with growing industrial demand. Invention of BIM is one thing that has helped AEC industry to work more efficiently and effectively.
BIM technology was introduced in the year 1984. From late 1990s to early 2000s are known as golden years of BIM development as developed countries started to utilize the process for infrastructural projects. In 2004 concept of collaboration on central model appeared on BIM apps followed by an introduction of parametric modelling and laser scanning in 2008. In the year 2020 Germany made it compulsory for transportation projects to use BIM process.
What is BIM?
BIM stands for Building Information Modelling or Building Information Management. BIM is a 3d model-based process which aids designing, construction and management of a project.
It basically allows AEC professionals to work in collaboration with mutual exchange of project information that is one central model stores all the building data in a digital, unique and calculable way.
BIM not only aids the process of designing and planning but also helps in maintenance of a building project and allows property owner to make informed decisions even after project completion. BIM can be used for all types of projects like for construction of a bridge, a road, tunnel or complete infrastructure project irrespective of the size, function and scale of the project.
Models made using BIM technology contains data associated with physical and functional characteristics. That is information about the architectural and structural elements, mechanical and electrical systems. It can also calculate material quantities, energy performance, cost estimation, etc. Software used by BIM experts are Autodesk Revit, Autodesk BIM 360, Navisworks, SketchUp, ArchiCAD and Vector-works. BIM interoperability aids easy exchange of information amongst different stake holders. It also helps AEC professionals to meet tight deadlines by decreasing the overall time and cost of a project.
How BIM technology works?
BIM designs can be used for entire lifecycle of building project from construction to maintenance and re-development. All the stake holders, an architect, the contractor, the builder, consultant, installer, and glazier make their contribution to a virtual structure.
Making of 3D digital model from an imaginative concept is done by using standardized object library. Library stores information about every component of a design. Like a window so the library tells you the functions, properties and performance of a window. One can easily add new objects using this library. One language of object library is understood by everyone concerned with the project.
The data stored in the model defines all the design elements and identifies the behavior and relationship between model components. Therefore, if the element in the model is manipulated by any of the stake holder every view is updated and change automatically appears in section elevation and sheet views.
How BIM technology works?
BIM benefits Today growing number of Architects, Engineers and Contractors are using BIM because it helps them work efficiently and results in positive business outcomes. Considerable numbers of BIM users have reported its positive impact on their company’s productivity. It is noted that architects prefer to use BIM for making designs from imaginative concepts and pre- project planning. Some BIM benefits are enlisted below.
- BIM connects architects, engineers and a contractor that is one central model that contains all the project information which ultimately gives everyone better insight of their in the overall project.
- Clash or conflict detection in BIM automatically checks all the major systems for interferences. For example, it automatically verifies that the piping does not intersect with steel beams, ducts or walls.
- Implementing BIM technology increases project precision and accuracy that is less errors and mistakes leads to positive outcomes. Planned overlap between stages of projects also reduces project time and cost.
- Use of BIM technology resolves issues like incompatible IT system errors around file sharing and different file formats, low data securing, loss of revision documents, limited project records, etc.
- BIM design not only improves the efficiency and effectiveness of construction phase but also offers better understanding of future operations and maintenance of project.
- BIM pre-project clash detection aids engineers to resolve clashes, reduce rework and optimize the resources, prevents waste of material, manpower and schedule overrun.
- BIM design fills up the communication gap between stake holders which ultimately leads to fewer requests for information (RFIs) and decreased field coordination problems.
- 3D modelling, rendering drafting generation of shop drawings, cost estimation, clash detection everything is handled by using single process that is BIM.
- Allows you to experience designs even before it is truly built and manipulate it to increase the success rate of a project.
- Inbuilt cost estimating feature automatically calculates material quantities and updates it when changes are made in the model.
- Digital product data can be used for manufacturing and assembly of structural systems.
- The use of BIM led to increased productivity, better engagement of project staff, and reduced contingencies.
Examples of BIM projects that support and quantify above mentioned applications of BIM are Leids University Medical Centre, National Library of Sejong City, St. Louis Aquarium Design. BIM is one of the most promising inventions in the field of AEC industry. It is a process that guides you throughout the building lifecycle that is from designing to recycling and all it demands is BIM expertise and one-time substantial investment for buying BIM software.