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VR At Work: 5 Reasons To Convert Building Information Models To VR Experiences 

Guest writer Satish Penmetsa of EchelonVR discusses the benefit of a BIM.

Virtual reality is here to stay. It is no longer a thing of future. Both hardware and software have matured to yield immersive experiences. Among the numerous industries to use virtual reality (VR), construction has embraced.

VR has changed how engineers use BIMs. A Building Information Model (BIM) is a 3D model which gives information about the physical and functional components of the structure. BIMs provide engineers with insights and tools to design efficiently. Converting these models to VR experiences aids in more robust designs.

Sheer satisfaction.

Can your client realize how big their 12×12’ bedroom is going to be? Studies have shown that people have a hard time understanding architectural drawings. They tend to be emotional about the home they have always wanted to build. They are curious about everything, be it location of fireplace or backyard, or how sunlight would flow to light up the entire place. With a VR experience, they can walkthrough the place and get the feel of how it would all turn out.

Invaluable design input.

With a virtual tour, the client doesn’t have to use his imagination about construction possibilities. A VR experience lets him explore, and enables him to state his needs. He gets to be the architect of the space he is meant to own.

This is particularly helpful for the places where traffic flow is important. In a hospital, placement of everything, from equipment & beds to even trashcans, makes a difference. With a VR model, nurses and doctors can move about the space and realize the best design for their optimum efficiency. A virtual structure gives the luxury of shifting walls, passages, and twisting things the way one likes. A bricked building, on the other hand, is rigid and doesn’t offer that flexibility.

Improve efficiency.

A VR model proves more effective than BIMs for the engineers to solve design problems. A structure is not very different from a body with all its intricate details. It has its own circulatory system of cables and pipes. And their placement affects the aesthetics of the space. All this design is much better handled when the structure stands before them.

Reduce overall cost.

Virtual reality helps a layman comprehend different construction stages by showing him a simulated BIM model. For large scale projects, it would help engineers analyze the workflow as they see 4D (3D model with time) in VR. They can also correlate the progress with the amount of money spent. This lets them schedule the activities in a way that minimizes cost.

Competitive edge.

Gilbane, Bechtel, and McCarthy have started to adopt virtual reality to design more robust buildings in less time. Read more about how world’s top 5 construction companies are leveraging virtual reality.

Not everyone can setup VR research labs. This is where EchelonVR comes in. EchelonVR can convert any 3D model to an immersive VR experience.

Are you a virtual reality enthusiast? Follow the EchelonVR blog to learn more.

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