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CIBSE YEN London - BIM Bare Bones

CIBSE YEN London at Arup London HQ - 1st October 2014

Reviewd By Jairo A. Jaramillo (YEN London Treasurer)

Air Handling Units for lungs, inverter driven in-line pumps driving both sides of the heart, a state of the art data centre fulfilling the role of the brain, two lift cores running the length of the legs and a bus bar / data communications riser where the spinal column would be.  No, not the recipe for a Building Services Frankenstein’s monster, rather Project OVE, the fascinating result of a brilliant piece of out-of-hours work performed by a diverse group of Revit, CAD and other 3D modelling and construction industry professionals led ably by CIBSE YEN London’s very own Andrew Duncan.  And so it was that ‘BIM Bare Bones’, a CIBSE YEN London presentation featuring Andrew Duncan, Casey Rutland and Charlie Murray, took place in Arup’s stunning London HQ with the express aim of giving attendees something a little different from the vast number of BIM information drives currently saturating the minds of construction industry professionals.

Project OVE (Image courtesy of        
Pre-event, attendees enjoy some drinks in Arup’s stunning HQ

Andrew opened the presentation by describing the aims and objectives of the eight week project, namely to use the human body as a fictional building / structure around which to discover best practice for various BIM methodologies.  The results are too myriad to do justice to in this short article, however, Andrew was able to give specific examples about correct flow of work, creation of BIM families and also quickly demonstrate the power of a BIM model by changing air flow rates in a fan coil unit representing an alveoli in the ‘lung’ and then, with the press of a button, show the resultant effect on chilled water flow rates much further upstream in the ‘heart’ of this human building.  The ooohs and ahhs from spectators were a clear indication of the admiration at seeing a process which is usually so time-consuming be reduced to mere seconds.  No more doing and re-doing schematics!

A full house awaits expectedly!
Andrew was then followed by his architectural colleague on the project, Casey D Rutland, who further expanded on the likely future impact BIM will have on the building services industry. He talked about the workflows required in creating the 3D spaces in which our services reside and the structural challenges faced when mimicking a human body as a building. From the laser modelling to discussions of human ankles the event gripped the audience’s attention.

Finally, the presentation was brought to a close by another CIBSE YEN London contributor, Laing O’Rourke’s very own Digital Engineer Charlie Murray.  Charlie’s contribution was invaluable in showing how the use of RFID tags and early BIM models has allowed much increased speed of construction, better project and completion management on site, more accurate budget and time forecasting plus all the associated improvements in build accuracy and quality that this brings.

The evening was rounded off with drinks courtesy of Arup and CIBSE YEN London with several audience members going on to savour the delights of Fitzrovia’s pubs.  It was a very successful event with lots of good networking, education and above all, quality BIM showcasing from Andrew, Charlie and Casey.  CIBSE YEN London is indebted to these three and particularly Arup for sharing its knowledge and facilities with all present.

Tweets were flying all evening with the hashtag #BIMBareBones and our speaker Casey D Rutland has kindly collated the tweets into a Storify: