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rsz_futuristic_architecture_reflectionTechnology within the construction industry and within our lives generally is developing rapidly.

Forget BIM Level 2, Digital Built Britain looks forward to a time, within the next decade, when BIM will encompass the Internet Of Things, advanced data analytics and the digital economy with the aim of planning new buildings and infrastructure more effectively, building at lower cost and operating and maintaining properties more efficiently and thus enabling citizens to make better use of the digital built environment.

The challenges we now face in trying to get design technologies to talk to one another will disappear as the demand for better, smart, safer construction techniques and smart buildings grows.

BIM Level 2, as mandated on all centrally funded public projects from April 2016 (England) and 2017 in Scotland, is a project based requirement. The mandate requires projects to be set up so the information can be shared. The right information accessible at the right time to the right people.

Improvements in sustainability are reputed and expected to be a key outcome from deploying BIM, but is that the case?

Percentage of contractors that are conducting BIM activities for sustainability (by country)

Percentage of contractors that are conducting BIM activities for sustainability (by country)

A 2014 SmartMarket Report from McGraw Hill “The Business Value of BIM for Construction in Global Markets” identifies tools for analysis and simulation as helping design professionals generate higher performing design solutions, and enabling contractors to leverage models in a variety of ways to improve the quality and reduce the environmental impact of their work. In addition, an emerging area of BIM activity relates to owners using models to improve building performance by optimizing facilities management.

Building physics is an incredibly important discipline in such building performance modelling, and therefore the design and operation of all sustainable buildings. At IES, we feel that having a basic understanding of the principles and theory behind this discipline is essential for anyone who is part of a design team, client team, or operations team.

By understanding the natural laws of physics, building professionals can develop and operate buildings that consume less energy and function more effectively. Good design relies heavily on the application of physics principles to the built environment. It’s also behind many of the energy performance metrics now mandated within UK Part L Compliance, and BREEAM energy credits. BIM integrated thermal simulation software, such as our VE suite, is a key technology enabler in this area.

We believe that all professionals involved in building design, construction, operation and retrofit should have a basic foundation in key building physics principles and their practical application. It enables fundamental understanding which leads to know how across the areas of climate, fabric and HVAC to aid in more collaborative interaction with building physics experts. Particularly relevant as BIM level 2 and above starts to promote more integrated and collaborative workflows.

I’ll leave you with this thought – how will understanding how these key areas of climate, building fabric, and HVAC affect building energy performance, how they are interrelated, and how you can use this knowledge to optimise the building and reduce energy requirements help you?

Find out More…

Open to all, we’re hosting a joint Introduction to Building Physics training course with the CIOB (Chartered Institute of Building) in Glasgow on 29th March, 2016. Sign up here.

Plus, we’re also taking part in a unique series of Future Thinking seminars around the UK during 24th February – 24th March 2016, primarily aimed at consultants and specifiers, called Mind the Performance Gap. Energy performance of buildings can be up to five times higher than predicted during design. This seminar series features speakers from the Carbon Trust, Daikin and ourselves. Seminars are hosted from 6pm – 9.30pm, including buffet, drinks and networking at the following locations– Leeds, Glasgow, Manchester, London, Cardiff, Bristol, Southampton, Birmingham, and Nottingham. Sign Up here.

And finally, if you want more detailed information on how you can practically integrate performance Analysis into a BIM level 2 process watch the video of Jean Carriere of Trailloop as he presents at our recent BIM4Analysis webinar on BIM interoperability for energy modelling. Technology is only one aspect of a BIM enabled approach, a strong process is what drives everything.

 

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