BMS and BIM in modern building management improve operations

Hardik Virkar

Hardik Virkar, Associate and BIM Digital Lead at AECOM India, explains how Building Management Systems and Building Information Modelling collaborate to enhance building intelligence, efficiency, and operational management in various projects, from Smart offices to healthcare facilities.

How does a BMS contribute to the intelligence of a building or home?

While working on a Smart office project, the BMS was so advanced that it adjusted the lighting based on the time of day and even dimmed the lights when it detected no movement for a while. It is like having a super-smart butler who turns off the lights when you forget and tweaks the thermostat based on weather forecasts. A BMS turns your building into a regulating genius.

Please explain the role of a BMS in monitoring and managing HVAC systems within a building. 

In a hospital where the temperature is just right, it points out that BMS is at work.  In healthcare projects, BMS is crucial in maintaining strict temperature and humidity levels in operating rooms. It is like having a super-organised librarian who keeps the indoor climate perfect. It confirms that your utility bills do not turn into a horror story. The BMS tweaks settings based on real-time data, so HVAC systems always run smoothly, letting you enjoy perfect indoor comfort without lifting a finger.

What are the functions of a BMS in controlling a chilled water system within a facility’s cooling system? 

A BMS running a chilled water system – is like a maestro conducting an orchestra. During a confidential large-scale data centre project, the BMS ensured the cooling system was always harmonious, preventing overheating. This attention to detail keeps energy use low and the system efficient. 

Please define the relationship between a BMS and a Building Information Modelling system. 

While working on a medical campus project, BIM was used to design the entire layout, and the BMS used that information to optimise daily operations. It is like BIM designing the spaceship and BMS piloting it through space, ensuring everything works perfectly. Together, they are the dynamic duo of building management—like Batman and Robin, but for the building.

How does BIM support the collaborative process among construction professionals in planning and designing a building? 

In a confidential data centre project mentioned earlier, BIM was a go-to tool for coordinating between various teams and reducing misunderstandings and reworks. Imagine a digital sandbox where everyone plays nicely, cutting down on confusion and costly reworks. With BIM, everyone is on the same page, making the whole project run smoother and more efficiently.

How do BIM objects contribute to the intelligence of a BIM model and its benefits for improving efficiency? 

While working as a BIM Manager on a commercial shopping mall project, each BIM object contained detailed information about the materials and performance specs, which made planning and execution a breeze. This wealth of data helps in planning, simulation, and execution, boosting efficiency and smart decision-making.

How can HVAC contractors utilise BIM software to enhance efficiency for HVAC projects? 

While working on a large-scale hospitality project, the in-house HVAC team used BIM to visualise the entire system before installation, catching potential issues early. Using BIM, contractors can better coordinate with other trades, streamline the installation process, and reduce waste and rework. It speeds up the project and ensures a smoother workflow.

How does BIM technology facilitate efficient construction activities and better operational management? 

In this era, BIM technology behaves like a crystal ball for construction, providing foresight and clarity. While working on a confidential project, BIM helped with precise planning. It lets everyone know what to do and when to do it. After construction, BIM served as a digital twin of the building, helping with maintenance and management. It was like having a digital diary that knows every detail of the building’s life. This seamless transition from construction to operation ensures buildings are built efficiently and managed smartly, leading to longer life and lower costs.

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