ConstructionPro Week, Volume: Construction Advisor Today - Issue: 24 - 10/07/2009

ASHRAE Releases Introductory Guide on BIM

A newly released guide from ASHRAE on building information models and building information modeling (BIM) serves as a resource for professionals considering BIM tools and applications for their businesses.


According to An Introduction to Building Information Modeling, BIM is "a digital representation of the physical and the functional characteristics of a facility." Unlike 2-D or 3-D CAD, BIM software utilizes intelligent objects to create models. In addition to enhanced operability, which improves integrated building design and integrated project delivery (IPD), the benefits of using BIM applications are numerous, said Dave Conover, a member of the BIM Steering Committee, which authored the guide. Most important, however, is BIM's ability "to create an accurate model that is useful throughout the entire life of the building, from initial design through occupancy and operation."


Conover feels that that in addition to the actual benefits of the BIM process, the guide itself offers advantages in that it gives those unfamiliar with BIM "a fast and high level introduction." Even those familiar with BIM can benefit from the free guide, Conover said. "It provides some broad level insight into how BIM will affect the building industry in general."


In addition to BIM's advantages and tips for getting started with the application, the guide also includes a list of software options.


An Introduction to Building Information Modeling is available as a free download on ASHRAE's website at




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