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Using Virtual Twins to Create a Building Ops Knowledge Base

Industries, Matterport, Real Estate

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by Sherry Rennick

Unless you happen to work with artificial intelligence or machine learning technologies, you may not know or understand what a “virtual twin” is – yet, that is. 

These days, virtual twins are swiftly becoming essential technology, being used everywhere, from smart city planning to constructing and maintaining smart buildings. 

It might surprise you to learn that these digital copies of real-world places, objects, or systems are so much more than just digital “mock-ups.” They are powerful tools for collaborative communication, particularly in problem-solving, data tracking, and optimizing real-life, physical spaces.

Bottom line: virtual twins are the future and might be just what you need to optimize your building. 

What is a Virtual Twin?

At Perspective 3D, we use Matterport technology to capture incredibly accurate, 3D virtual models of buildings for various clients, ranging from engineers and architects to property managers and realtors.

The possibilities and benefits of this technology are rapidly expanding, particularly in how they simplify and connect projects and properties with multiple customers and vendors. 

Here are the top ways virtual twins can be used to create a building ops knowledge base.

Virtual Twins Form the Basis of BIM

The incredible accuracy of Matterport digital twins makes them especially useful for Building Information Modeling (BIM) for engineering and construction projects. Matterport virtual twin technology integrates seamlessly with top BIM software, like Autodesk 360.

All the details of construction projects, including blueprint specs, various measurements, and project status data, can be stored in a “digital twin.” This allows multiple parties, from stakeholders to contractors, to collaborate effectively on a project without being on the same site.

Virtual twins are not equal to nor meant to replace BIM software. BIM is used to help architects and builders through the design process, focusing heavily on the physical space. A virtual twin is a “living model,” making it ideal for testing the integrity of the design of the physical space. With an exact 3D representation of your project, you can play out scenarios such as furniture layouts and fire evacuation plans to test and see if your design needs adjustments. The best part is using virtual twin technology right from the start of your building project, potentially saving you many costly design mistakes and lost time.

Virtual Twins, the Future of Smart Buildings

Smart buildings – spaces that use technology to maximize efficiency, safety, and comfort – are the future of new construction. From climate control to security features, smart technology has become what occupants expect in their workplace or home.

Incorporating virtual twin imaging and technology with a smart building optimizes the performance of its technology by providing a contextual platform in which to troubleshoot, track data, and make intelligent suggestions for improvement. You have the opportunity to “test” the function of smart technology in a simulation, giving ample time to make changes. 

For building operators, virtual twins can accurately track and contextualize detailed information, which can reduce friction and improve communication with tenants or employees. 

Consistent & Efficient Tracking and Collaboration Around Building Issues

Of all the benefits virtual twins offer in a building ops knowledge base, improved communication and collaboration are top.

Whether you are an engineer overseeing a building’s design and construction or a property owner juggling building maintenance and the well-being of your tenants, communicating with multiple people across a project and shared properties can be time-consuming and inefficient.

Not only do virtual twins store accurate visual data, but they also can store notes and input from multiple parties. This benefits those involved in building design and management but is not limited to those two areas. 3D virtual twin technology is also a huge asset for the insurance and restoration industries, capturing key visual information alongside notes relevant to claims and policies.

Would You Benefit From Virtual Twin Technology?

At Perspective 3D, we’ve seen the benefits virtual twins offer in building construction and maintenance. We’ve helped hundreds of people optimize access, management, and promotion of their projects and properties with our expert 3D imaging. 

If you’re ready to take your project to the next level, we’d love to help!