BIM – is there a role for the surveyor?

My colleague Oliver Brooks’ recent blog takes a look at the hot topic of the moment in the construction and engineering world – BIM. KOREC are recent converts to the world of Twitter and there is a great deal of conversation in the ‘Twittersphere’ around BIM and it seems that everyone wants to have their say. It’s no surprise then that there are BIM events springing up left, right and centre and the KOREC calendar is looking pretty hectic over the next few months as a result.

We’ll be attending a number of events for a number of reasons. Like a lot of companies, we’re interested in seeing what we can contribute to the BIM agenda and understanding exactly where the technologies that we provide can help. Unsurprisingly this isn’t for completely alturistic reasons, but we are also looking at ways that we can help our land survey customers develop their businesses into this field at a time when new business opportunities are thin on the ground.

Manchester Central Library Revit BIMWe begin at The Infrastructure Show in a couple of weeks where we will be joined by a number of our partners who will be giving presentations in the NCE Hi-Tech Zone. The topics are varied to say the least, with KOREC, customers and partners discussing projects that they have worked on using the variety of technology solutions that we provide. One of the highlights will be Steve Bury of Bury Associates who will discuss how he used laser scanning, Autodesk Revit and the Trimble S6 to produce a BIM for the refurbishment of Manchester Central Library for his client Ryder Architecture. KOREC’s Matt Lock will be providing a cut-down version of his recent CICES presentation which looked at how surveyors can play a role in BIM, plus we have an introduction to the Intelligent Trench solution which brings the world of RFID to BIM and utilities asset management.  Finally, we’re joined at the show by FARO, hot-footing it from InterGEO with the latest version of the FARO Focus3D laser scanner which offers a series of new features to make 3D Documentation projects even more efficient.

In case we’re not already busy enough during the week of The Infrastructure Show we’ll also be attending the hot-ticket in the ICE conference season, ICE BIM 2011. The ICE sold out for the conference in just three weeks and there is now a waiting list for the 2012 event, so if you need a barometer of the interest that BIM is generating in the UK construction industry this is it. A cursory glance at the conference programme and you can get an idea as to why the event sold out so quickly. We are certainly looking forward to listening to the discussions and debate whilst considering how we can help our land survey customers find their role in this rapidly shifting technology landscape.

FARO Focus3D Laser ScannerStaying with BIM, the team at KOREC are really excited about exhibiting at BIM Show Live on the 1st November, particularly as we will be joining our partners from TEKLA at the show. If you miss him at The Infrastructure ShowSteve Bury makes another appearance at BIM Show Live and will be giving a short case study presentation. With KOREC’s our own stand at the exhibition we’ll have the opportunity to provide visitors with a good understanding of how they can utilise the latest laser scanning and surveying technology to help their BIM projects. Thanks to the FARO Focus3D, laser scanning technology is fast becoming more affordable and user friendly, so surveyors who have previously been priced out of the market can now add laser scanning to the services that they provide to clients. Elsewhere in Europe clients and architects themselves have started to adopt the technology as they realise the benefits and range of applications that the technology provides.

Last, and by no means least, as payback for Oliver headlining his latest blog with the term ‘marketing fluff’ he will now be discussing the surveyor’s role in getting BIM to the field at the COMIT Construction MobileIT Conference 2011Delivering the value of BIM to Smart Mobile Devices. KOREC are pleased to be sponsoring this event and Oliver’s presentation will discuss the role of 3D Laser Scanners in the BIM process for redesign, visualisations and clash detection as will as how office based process and information can be linked to the surveyor and engineer on site.  As with the ICE BIM conference the programme has its fair share of big hitters including Phil Jackson, Chair Of ICE IS Panel, Institution for Civil Engineers; Tim Broyd, Group Technology & Innovation Director and Group Sustainability Director, Halcrow; Dietmar Backes, Geomatic System Manager & Teaching Fellow, University College London and Iain Miskimmin, Technology Chairman – COMIT PROJECT Ltd / Industry Consultant, COMIT / Bentley Systems. The COMIT conference takes place on the 11th November at University College London and bookings are now being taken online.

So as you can see, it is going to be a busy few months for us at KOREC and I am sure that by the end of all this we will be able to have a pretty good stab at defining exactly what role our surveying customers can play in BIM. If you want to get a head start, then you could always take a look at our recent FARO Focus3D Webinar which gives an excellent introduction to the technology, even if I do say so myself…