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Laser Scanning for BIM

Virtual To Actual, Black Art Of Laser scanning for BIM – Over Hyped or Aptly Described?

When laser survey and point cloud modeling first arrived there was a sense of awe and wonder. As built structures were scanned and converted into 3D models so easily. Today as scanners and related software have become more advanced, and the BIM authoring tools have also evolved – 3D Laser scanning to accurate Revit and BIM is transforming the way building owners and designers gather the construction details and information about existing buildings and structures.

Laser Scanning to BIM

Eventually, Scan to BIM, has become the most popular and the talked about technology across the AEC industry. However, some skepticism and doubt still prevails across some sections of the industry. This skepticism is primarily because, point cloud surveys collect only what is visible, more over there can be inconsistencies in the

So the Question Here is to Scan or Not to Scan?:
There are several existing buildings that are old and need renovation however, due to lack of availability of proper documentation renovation becomes difficult. This is where laser scanning and point cloud modeling comes in. Suppose you collect the structural data for a building, consisting of shapes, mass and color, it becomes easy to plan MEP network within this structure such that there are no clashes between the structural and MEP disciplines. This is where it is also possible to use Point cloud for clash detection and mitigation. However it is absolutely essential to consider some aspects of laser scanning before you decide to adopt the technology for virtual recreation of a As built facility.

Are these point cloud models ready to use? The survey data is made of thousands and millions of points and it needs to be traced upon and resurfaced to convert it into a model with polygons. Now it becomes ready for BIM.

It is absolutely true that point cloud survey can be costly. It requires a lot of on field work and the laser scanners that are used for laser survey are also costly. Another point that requires a mention here is that, the surveyed data (a considerably large building requires minimum 250 to 300 scans) can be large, and it requires lot of RAM and storage space to store and process the point clouds and convert them into intelligent information rich BIM. As a result we can say that it is not for small scale projects, however for huge commercial, infrastructural and palatial properties in addition to heritage buildings and properties of architectural significance scan to BIM can be a valued proposition.

There is absolutely no doubt that using laser surveys, it becomes extremely easy and a fast tracked process to collect raw data. But there are some aspects to be mindful of. It is true that point cloud surveys cannot collect data in entirety. Apart from the fact that 3D scanners cannot capture details of hidden objects, it is also true that the accuracy and amount of detail collected does not solely depend on the type of scanner. The expertise of the survey professional also plays a major role.

Based on the cost benefit analysis it should be decided whether to scan or not to scan for a particular renovation, reconstruction, or refurbishment project.

The Point Cloud to BIM – Phenomenon And Evolution:
Laser scanners are getting smarter, compact and more accurate. The cost of scanning is hence coming down. If laser scanners become affordable even for developers who are working on very small scale projects, it will bring another revolution in the building and construction industry. The use of laser survey will become common place, and even a small two storey building construction project will be able to leverage the benefits ofpoint cloud to BIM for through documentation, clash detection, fast tracking the construction process and much more. The future of laser scanning and conversion to BIM will not be limited to documentation and renovation/retrofits/repair projects but will also be used during the construction projects to scan installed structures and check them against design models. Reference e-architect

Lowering Costs with Building Information Modeling

As costs for everything soar around us, pressure is on for building contractors and design teams to find ways of reducing costs. The need for superior construction and construction related products has driven engineers to constantly look for ways to improve everything from construction methods, through the materials used, to the systems which design teams depend upon to develop new building designs.

Building information modeling (BIM) is a process involving the generation and management of digital representations of physical and functional characteristics of places.

Lowering Costs with Building Information Modeling

Building Information Modeling (BIM) has risen as a very effective tool, which has been proven to lower costs considerably. This new development tool can be described as CAD (computer aided design) on steroids. It provides a much more robust design environment, which is fully integrated between all of the design disciplines, saving money in both the design and construction phases of the project.
The major difference between BIM and CAD is that BIM is fully integrated. CAD is essentially a computerized version of the old two-dimensional flat drawing. Individual drawings are produced, which the program can then use to create a 3D model. However, changes are always made in the 2D drawings. These changes have to be made on every affected drawing, creating a huge opportunity for error. Separate design disciplines create separate drawings, increasing the opportunity for errors. On the other hand, BIM integrates all levels of the design, so that changes which are made to the design are reflected in all affected drawings automatically.

There are several advantages to using a BIM system, all of which ultimately affect the bottom line:

  • Full Integration – All of the design disciplines work on the same electronic model, not separate drawings. By doing so, changes that are created by one discipline, such as HVAC, automatically show up for other members of the design team to see. This prevents double utilization of space and conflicts in the design, allowing the whole design team to have instant access to changes made and see their effects.
  • Reduced Design Rework – A large part of the man hours in any design project is the time it takes to redesign things to meet changing customer needs and expectations. With BIM, this time is drastically reduced. Instead of changing individual drawings, the central model is changed, which is then automatically reflected in all affected drawings.
  • Reduced Construction Changes and Rework – By identifying potential problems and conflicts in the design phase, construction rework caused by design problem is drastically reduced. The building goes up right the first time, without need to redo things, and eliminating the associated cost of those change orders.
  • Improving Productivity – The fully integrated nature of BIM improves productivity within the architectural and engineering team. Work is streamlined by working with standard components, much as it is in CAD. However, in addition to having a library of components to work with, the BIM system allows designers to instantly see the effect of their design changes.
  • Increases Communication – Having all the design specialists work off the same model ensures that everyone knows what each other are doing. Individual specialists can then connect with each other to eliminate conflicts, before they create problems in the design.
  • Lowering Data Input Time – The BIM model stores all pertinent information relating to the building’s design, allowing the same information to be used in multiple documents and places, without having to recreate or re-input that information.
  • Full Project Information – BIM systems not only store all the design information about the project, but all other related information about the project, including scheduling and cost. This increase in information flow reduces errors, helping keep costs for corrections to a minimum.

As you can see, BIM provides multiple opportunities for cost reduction, allowing a significant overall final cost savings for almost any project. The larger and more complex the project, the greater the opportunity for savings, because of the greater probability of error and change elimination. Reference via technik.