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Electrical Engineering and BIM

BIM Modeling ServicesContractors have already started using Building Information Modeling (BIM) on their large-scale projects, but electrical engineers have been one of the last to adopt this technology because of the limits in what it can do for them.

BIM renders 3D digital models of each component of a structure so that developers can see how each part will work together. It acts as a more intricate version of CAD software. The collaboration capabilities make it a popular choice with builders because all of the teams involved, from the architects to the plumbers, are able to have input.

Electrical engineers have been the last to jump on board because the software has limited capabilities when it comes to electrical design work. Those in the industry who do use it see advantages in the software, and believe that over time developments will be made to increase its value to them.

One of the major hurdles for electrical engineers is the inability to create electrical renderings within BIM. Some firms have worked around it by creating their own custom-made visuals to incorporate into the software. They believe that because many developers don’t think electrical engineers need to be brought into the building process from the beginning, BIM software developers didn’t see a need to give them the option to create 3D renderings. They are hopeful that over time, and with increasing use by electrical engineers, that BIM creators will add more components that apply to them.

Some of the benefits that electrical engineers see in BIM modeling services are the ability to check for electrical conflicts within the whole structure, much like the other components of the software. A user can also create layouts in order to determine what parts are needed early on the project. Although the designer has to use CAD or other drafting software to create their own 3D renderings of the electrical side, it does allow for materials prefabrication. BIM shows what is needed for the structure, from support systems to trays, brackets, rods, and conduits. This allows designers to have a solid cost estimate of the materials before construction begins.

In addition, BIM modeling services allow the user to check electrical distribution for loads and breaker services, and monitor energy usage and lighting. Designers are also able to coordinate mechanical and equipment work remotely using a laptop.

Many firms believe these utilities are good enough reasons to use the software, especially if other people involved in the build are using BIM. The collaboration feature of the software is one of the biggest advantages of using it. Large projects have multiple teams working on them that need to have real-time updates on other aspects of the building. When someone makes a change, it is seen by everyone so that modifications can be made.

Overall, the benefits of the software outweigh its limitations because it reduces costs across the board because of its ability to track materials and catch problems within a structure before the building process begins. That’s a good enough reason for electrical engineers to continue using it and hope for better software in the future.

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