In this article, we explain the top five BIM trends that are expected to take the construction industry by storm in 2022, and why Building Information Modelling adoption is the way forward in our new digital age
2021 was a great year for Building Information Modelling (BIM) software, across the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry. However, due to the ever-evolving nature of technology, new BIM trends are constantly emerging in the construction industry.
According to Viewpoint, there has been a significant rise in the adoption of BIM software in the past decade, with 73% of construction companies reporting that they are aware of BIM and are using it within their companies, which has risen significantly to a mere 11% in 2011.
The UN estimates that by 2050, the global population is estimated to reach 9.8 billion and in order to meet housing and sustainability needs in wake of a rapidly rising population, the adoption of BIM software enables construction processes to be completed more efficiently and capture important data in the process.
The implementation of BIM is continuously on the rise
Building Information Modelling is a process used in the construction industry which is used to manage a project throughout its whole lifecycle. Through using BIM software, the digital aspects of a construction project are managed using the relevant digital software.
The implementation of digital software allows for quicker construction times, better cost management, and building safety, to name a few benefits.
The term BIM came about in the late 1970s, but only started being implemented in the 2000s. Although different countries have a different rate of BIM implementation, ISO 19650 is known as the international standard for managing information over the whole life cycle of a built asset using BIM.
Since 2017, the implementation of BIM has become mandatory for all projects over £100m.
The top five BIM trends dominating 2022
AI (Artificial Intelligence)
Artificial intelligence is defined as the digital ability of a computer, or a robot to perform often human-like tasks.
The term is commonly associated with how computers have been built to perform tasks using the intellectual processes of humans. This enables the computer to complete digital processes using the human ability to reason, learn and discover.
In construction, a traditionally physical trade that relies on human ability, AI is a particularly useful tool because it allows construction processes to become more streamlined by reducing the cost, time, and risk of the project lifecycle by exploring all available avenues and processes of a construction project.
According to IBM, “A digital twin is a virtual model designed to accurately reflect a physical object”. Digital twin technology uses real-time sensors fitted in the physical object to map out vital areas of functionality, which produce data about object performance.
In turn, these sensors create a hyper-accurate virtual model of the physical object, which can be then used to run simulations and performance improvements to gain insight.
Through using digital twin technology in construction projects, teams can massively cut costs and save time by running various processes on the virtual object. This can ensure that construction is as accurate as possible, and less costly mistakes are made.
Designing Buildings defines cloud technology as the “delivery over the ‘cloud’ (the internet) of a range of computing services, such as storage, databases networking servers, software, and analytics to allow building professionals access to faster and more flexible resources”.
Cloud technology therefore enables a multitude of people working on a construction project to collaborate together, from architects, designers, and engineers can access the same information, from different locations.
The incorporation of cloud technology is particularly useful because it enhances the overall productivity of the project team and means fewer mix-ups and communication errors!
Automation is the process of using digital processes, applications, and robots to perform tasks with minimal human input.
We’ve seen this already with current BIM trends, and technological advancement, even outside of construction. The pandemic has exacerbated this and created a silver lining for the BIM industry, as machines replace humans on jobsites.
Not only is automation more cost-effective in construction, but it also reduces health and safety hazards as well. Gone are the times when danger in construction was an inevitable part of the job, as companies use more robotics and digital processes to move towards a safer working environment.
5. Building Energy modelling
As the UK moves towards net zero by 2050, energy efficiency has never been more important in construction processes.
Building energy modelling (BEM), according to the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, “is a versatile, multipurpose tool that is used in new building and retrofit design, code compliance, green certification, qualification for tax credits and utility incentives, and real-time building control.”
Building energy modelling is an up-and-coming software tool as building designers move towards greener construction. Using a building simulation of energy use, BEM software can help design more energy-efficient buildings, reduce energy costs of construction projects, and retrofit housing.