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How Building Information Modelling Helps the Lab Construction Process

How Building Information Modelling Helps the Lab Construction Process

bim laboratory design

Even if you don’t realise it, the room or building you are currently sat within could well have been designed with the aid of Building Information Modelling (BIM). The process of generating and managing digital representations of both the physical and functional characteristics of buildings; BIM can help architects, construction companies and design agencies develop plans to meet the demands of their clients.

3D laboratory designThe actual Building Information Models are physical or digital files which are shared by the authorised parties, ensuring all the appropriate people and organisations have access to all the important features of a developing building – including access to water, wastewater routes and access to electricity, gas, refuse and communication facilities. This ensures that all parties are on the same page, reducing the risk of problems occurring during the construction process.

The basic concept has existed since the 1970s, but the term BIM was not actually used until a paper written by Robert Aish in 1986. BIM became a widely used term in the early parts of the 21st century, as software improved to a standard which accommodated more efficient digital representation of the building process.

Perhaps the greatest benefit of BIM was the ability to create accurate 5 dimensional representations of the building plan – with time as the fourth dimension, and cost as the fifth. Representing much more than just geometry, BIM is capable of accurately depicting spatial relationships, light analysis, geographic information and other factors. This gives the plans a distinct advantage over traditional two-dimensional technical drawings.

Using a single shared model, BIM reduces the risk of information and details being lost when ownership of the project changes hands. Traditional two-dimensional plans are more at risk of losing information when the project is handed over from design teams to contractors to owners and operators, which could lead to disastrous or costly oversights.

The original software products for BIM date back to the late 1970s, when the likes of GLIDE, RUCAPS, Sonata and Reflex were developed. Whilst these were quickly replaced by superior tools and models, they are considered forefathers to current software, with many of their principles remaining in place.


As well with aiding design and construction, BIM also has a number of uses during the lifespan of a building developed using the technology. If a problem occurs with a construction developed using BIM, it may be possible for professionals to identify solutions using the technology. This process can reduce the risk of quick fixes and solutions being implemented – improving the chances that the problem will be effectively and permanently fixed first time.

At InterFocus, we can accommodate the use of BIM throughout the life of our projects, helping us work with other design teams and contractors in the most effective and efficient manner. For more information about how InterFocus can help you develop and manage your lab construction or development project, visit our homepage or contact our dedicated team today on 01223 894833.

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