BIM for Data Centres
Data centres are intensive construction projects. Their design needs to be exacting, and the infrastructure needs to be extremely robust in order to prevent critical machinery from losing power or becoming damaged. Not only that, but as data centre technology increases in complexity with new cooling techniques and denser server racks, data centres will need to be built and maintained differently.
Modelling projects using BIM software is the first step towards solving problems associated with these new technologies, both before and after facilities are finished. Modern data centres can now be painstakingly planned before construction ever begins.
Both the models and the data from these construction projects will be accessible long after the project is over, in a form much easier to find and analyse than a series of 2D drawings.
DCT provide full specialist (VDC) virtual design and construction services, delivered by an experienced in-house team of professionals with trade and engineering backgrounds. We specialise in Hyperscale and Enterprise Data Centre Solutions that are delivered faster, leaner & smarter.
Established on the principle of knowledge-based solutions, we have grown to become one of the leading and most trusted global digital companies in our sector. We are currently providing VDC project management services on Data Centre projects across several European countries, equating to over 200MW.
BIM helps data centre designers confirm that the equipment and distribution can and does all fit, verify maintenance and service clearances, and analyze pressure drop and voltage drop with the actual routing.
Keeping Project Routine Free of Conflicts
Transmitting the capacity out of the densely packed equipment requires multiple layers of stacked conduit, duct, and piping. Using the model, the detailers can pick up where the designers left off, adding intelligence to the individual elements.
To help speed construction, AEC firms are prefabricating many of the building systems and components, from the enclosure to the mechanical and electrical systems. BIM/VDC is vital for designing and testing prefabrication concepts with respect to material handling, path of travel, and installation sequence.
Managing Project Phasing
Data center projects are typically phased to avoid building out expensive capacity that is not needed on day one. “By adding a phasing elements of the BIM model, the team can analyze the cost, schedule, and energy consumption at different phases”.
By incorporating computational fluid dynamic (CFD) simulations into the BIM model, engineers can evaluate and fine tune server layouts based on the thermal modelling. “By incorporating that process into the Revit model, we’re able to visualize how the air will flow inside the data centre and see the temperature variation based on the height and how the air is moving,”
Data centres require a robust commissioning process to ensure performance and reliability. Commissioning information tags for each piece of equipment and feeder can be added to the BIM model to keep a live database of commissioning process status.
When this information is inserted into the BIM database, the information can be retained and viewed for each piece of equipment, rather than in separate volumes. “Whether they are facing a problem or trying to improve energy efficiency, data centre operators would benefit from a comprehensive set of information”.
Data Centre Digital Project Management
It is our belief, that for certain endeavors, a personal presence is required in order to increase communication, thereby maximising efficiency. These meetings can occur in person or they can be effectively conducted using web-based collaboration tools. DCT Group can provide guidance to all project stakeholders and other team leaders in the effective oversight of coordination meetings.
On-site support/BIM Modelling Support
DCT Group can facilitate on-site support and BIM co-ordination support by sending one or more of our BIM professionals to work at your location (office or construction site) for a period of time during the project. Our staff will not only be a BIM resource at your location but will assist with co-ordination between contractors ensuring the project’s success.