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Building Energy Performance Analysis softwares and after...

asked 2015-02-03 01:38:48 -0500

updated 2015-11-13 11:46:44 -0500


I started lately to work on building energy models. I was looking into Autodesk softwares - Revit, Ecotect, Vasari among the others. I noticed by comparison with other softwares that once you get out from the conceptual stage of the project; you can't use these softwares anymore. With the emergence of the Integrated Project Delivery, I'm looking to a product where you can improve your building from A to Z in the same software and be able to do analysis in it at the same time (at least exporting it correctly) until the construction phase (and even after, for commissioning). As an engineer, it is really time consuming, to rebuild the project in each software to work on it, or to export it then correct the errors of the exportation. How about accuracy?

What are your methods and reliable softwares?

Thanks in advance

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@NassimJ, welcome. And great question! Would be very interested to know how people are carrying designs and analyses forward.

__AmirRoth__ gravatar image __AmirRoth__  ( 2015-02-03 08:23:21 -0500 )edit

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answered 2015-02-03 03:30:48 -0500

To my knowledge, you're out of luck when it comes to looking for a one-stop-shop software: none of them is really an integrated product where you can do everything in it (at least without lacking the flexibility of features of some other tool).

The real question is which ones play more nicely with others, and this has been covered on Unmet Hours here.

I hope to stand corrected, or at least soon, but as far as I can tell it's pretty much a one way street so far: you'll be able to export to your energy modeling software, but if you decide in the energy modeling software to change the name of a zone or a construction, changes won't travel back to your CAD/BIM model.

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answered 2015-02-03 10:16:53 -0500

To touch on accuracy, I think it is extremely important to keep in mind that the vast majority of issues relating to energy modeling prediction are user errors, not software capability issues. Someone who has experience on a certain program and is a comprehensive energy modeler will produce better results most of the time when compared to someone who is new to a software and to energy modeling, regardless of the program. I know it has been said a million times, but it is worth repeating "garbage in = garbage out".

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100% agree, GIGO is the "one" to rule them all. Though I think the OP's question really touches on BIM to BEM transition, so you don't have to rebuild from scratch, don't you think?

Julien Marrec gravatar image Julien Marrec  ( 2015-02-03 13:05:40 -0500 )edit

Sure, Garbage in Garbage out is the rule in energy modeling. One has to master his software to ba able to use them. In the AEC, one should know that many contributors work on the same model (speaking of Revit for instance), and this parameter is not a concern for architects since what is matter for them is the visual part and construction details printed on their sheets. But speaking of accuracy, I meant the engine, the calculations... I know that some softwares are meant to be used for the conceptual and early design stages; and their results aim to relatively make the difference between....

NassimJ gravatar image NassimJ  ( 2015-02-04 01:32:35 -0500 )edit

...options and the values got aren't the absolute values (speaking of GBS, Ecotect...). So my question was how can we rely on this software and not on that software. And my former question, how do you guys perform analysis and calculations during the design stage and after, and how do you deal with architects models during a project. Thanks :)

NassimJ gravatar image NassimJ  ( 2015-02-04 01:36:27 -0500 )edit

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Asked: 2015-02-03 01:38:48 -0500

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Last updated: Feb 03 '15