Bringing Value Back to Consulting Engineering
In a previous blog, I discussed the lack of perceived value in the architectural and engineering (AE) consulting business. The problem statement was: Why are fees and services declining relative to other players in the construction space?
Many in the consulting biz lament the downward pressure on fees, conversations with clients about the minimum services and level of design they really need, and the decreasing scope of involvement of the consultant. I argued that the root cause of this was the declining relevance of the services and skills that we offer to the client embarking on a significant construction project.
Topics: consulting engineering
Benefits of MEP Coordination
The construction industry is under constant pressure to overcome schedule, budget, labor and productivity risk factors. This enduring struggle has given rise to many methods and technologies geared toward eliminating inefficient and/or conflict-prone processes.
MEP coordination drawings represent an evolution to that end. These CAD drawings provide detailed layout and spatial information related to the mechanical, electrical, plumbing (MEP), process piping and data systems within an architectural design of a facility. Their primary purpose is to illustrate and identify any potential conflicts between the various equipment layouts and architectural elements that must be squeezed into a project envelope.
Topics: MEP engineering
MEP Engineering Provides Immediate and Long Term Benefits
Through the use of BIM technology, MEP Engineers can collaborate with building owners and designers to develop working visualizations of a building’s mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) systems. This opens the door to system awareness and system improvements that can have both immediate and long term benefits.
Topics: MEP engineering
From BIM to Modular MEP to Lean Construction
Modularization is taking root in many fields. Mostly in manufacturing industries but also in applications as far flung as software development and the Internet of Things (IoT). In the fields of engineering and construction, modular design and modular processes are introducing new levels of project quality, productivity, efficiency and cost compared to traditional methods.
Topics: lean construction, modular manufacturing, modular mep
Mechanical Designer, Stephen Gioacchini Re-joins ENGVT
ENGVT expanded its design team with the hire of Mechanical Design expert, Stephen Gioacchini.
Stephen brings more than 25 years of experience in CAD design, specializing in piping and modular skid design for process facilities in the Natural Gas, Semiconductor (ultra high-purity), and Wastewater industries.
Topics: mechanical designer, careers
ENGVT Welcomes New Virtual Design and Construction Manager
ENGVT has added Jason Peters to its team of multi-disciplinary design experts. Jason has been hired to fill the position of Virtual Design and Construction Manager, bringing with him two decades of experience in construction, engineering and building technology.
Prior to joining ENGVT, Jason held the position of Virtual Construction Manager at PC Construction in South Burlington, Vermont. As a pioneer of that position, Jason both built and managed the Virtual Construction Department there.
Topics: virtual design and construction, careers
Highlights From Asahi and Harrington Industrial Plastics Training Event
As part of an educational and partnership-building initiative, a team of CPS Group engineers were invited by Asahi/America, Inc., and Harrington Industrial Plastics to participate in a special training and certification event. During the event, Mechanical and Senior Project Engineers from ENGVT and NEHP were treated to an ultra-high-purity and industrial plastics training seminar which also included a complete tour of Asahi/America, Inc.
The gesture was well-received and turned out to be a valuable experience for everyone involved.
Topics: Ultra-High-Purity Piping, careers
The brachistochrone execution plan Has A slow start but a fast finish
Because you clicked on a blog with a title like "Solving The Brachistochrone Problem in Construction," you must be naturally inquisitive. That’s great, because you're the kind of people we need in construction if we are going to solve the time, labor, and cost problems that we all wrestle with every day. Inquisitive people are always looking to learn new tricks and evaluate new approaches.
Hopefully I will be able to reward your curiosity by explaining the Brachistochrone Problem and how to solve it in the construction process with a well-executed Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) approach combined with an aggressive prefabrication plan.
Topics: construction productivity
Why Building Enclosure Commissioning (BECx) is crucial
Ensuring that a building’s enclosure is adequately designed and installed is a major factor in how well the building will ultimately perform. A building’s performance can be measured in a number of ways, but the safety and comfort of the end user should always be number one.
All building owners need to evaluate whether their new building should implement the BECx process. Why?...
Launching Mechanical Engineering Careers In a Sea of Opportunity
ENGVT has hired two recent Clarkson University graduates, Karl Spooner and Tim Martin as Associate Engineers.
“Tim and Karl are a perfect addition to our growing roster,” said Jerry Chabot, President of ENGVT. “Their skills and education add strength and synergy to our team. With such a noticeable growth in demand for mechanical engineers, and so many industries competing for them, we are happy to be a part of their career path and to be connected with their talent.”
Topics: careers, mechanical engineering
Revit MEP / Architecture Solves Collaboration Issues
As buildings become more advanced to meet energy and water use goals, such as those outlined in the LEED and Architecture 2030 Challenge platforms, the design of MEP systems must be able to react to changes in the overall building design throughout the design process. This will ensure that the MEP systems are properly sized and take into account the inevitable load variations throughout the building.
Understanding the importance of real-time coordination between MEP engineers, architects and construction managers means taking advantage of software tools that exist on the market today. Luckily Revit has been designed with collaboration in mind, by including powerful and efficient tools that make communication between disciplines understandable and easy.
Topics: revit mep
5 Systems to Consider for Improved Commercial HVAC Efficiency
As a building owner, one of the greatest expenses is the cost of heating and cooling a building. While it can be easy to simply accept this as a necessity, it should be known that there are ways to improve commercial HVAC efficiency and reduce the cost of utilities, leaving money to be spent elsewhere in the building.
The upfront cost of a system upgrade can often be offset by the dollars saved using less electricity, gas, oil, propane, or other energy source. This payback period can be evaluated during the initial conceptual phases of the project by most mechanical engineering firms through energy modelling computer software. This allows you to evaluate the feasibility of possible upgrades before jumping into any commitments.
Topics: commercial hvac efficiency
A Hard Look AT Consulting Engineering CYA Notes And 3 Tips To Avoid Them
I recently discussed the lack of perceived value in the architectural and engineering consulting business (AE) in a previous blog post. The problem statement was: Why are fees and services declining relative to other players in the construction space?
I previously mentioned that our industry’s pivot away from a primary focus on quality deliverables to a primary focus on managing liability has negatively impacted both our culture and our value to our customers and end users.
Topics: consulting engineering
Returning Value to the Consulting Engineering Profession
I was recently sent this article from the Architectural Record by one of my consultant friends with whom I often commiserate about the struggles of being a design professional in today’s market. The article discusses the “race to the bottom” in the past ten years or so by the professional consulting industry (just replace the word “architect” in the article with “consulting engineer” and all the themes still apply).
Topics: consulting engineering
ECM Motors = Energy savings and added functionality
ECM motors are providing a variety of benefits to commercial HVAC systems over traditional PSC motors. These motors are used in pumps, fans, and increasingly in compressors and other motor applications. An ECM pump or fan motor is electrically commutated, which means it uses a DC circuit controlled by an internal microprocessor to vary the speed and torque of the motor to match changing system requirements.
PSC motors, or permanent split capacitor, use non-polarized capacitors and brushes to deliver electricity to the rotating parts. These brushes are known to wear out over time. ECM motors do not use brushes, thereby reducing maintenance and extending service life.
Topics: Commercial HVAC, ecm motors, psc motors
4 Benefits of Properly Located HVAC EquipmenT
The potential hazards and maintenance efforts associated with poorly located HVAC equipment can be a perpetual battle for facility managers and building maintenance staff.
If HVAC equipment is difficult to access, it is less likely to be properly maintained. Inadequate maintenance leads to component failure, which can be catastrophic in a museum setting.
Topics: Museum HVAC Design, hvac equipment
Intro To HVAC Economizer Systems
Every building owner wants a lower energy bill. With museum applications in particular, implementing energy saving measures or selecting HVAC economizer systems first requires a full understanding of the system’s capabilities and potential effects in order to avoid negative impacts to the building, its occupants, and its artifacts.
Topics: Museum HVAC Design, hvac economizer
HVAC Equipment and Tricks For Condensation Prevention
HVAC design for museums in cold weather climates often requires an attention to detail that's typically not necessary when humidification is not a factor.
Because cold, dry, outdoor air must be heated and humidified prior to discharging into the gallery space, and because exterior windows and mullions have the potential to get colder than the space dew point, special care needs to be taken to ensure that condensation does not form on these elements.
Topics: Museum HVAC Design, hvac condensation, hvac equipment
HVAC Design Considerations for effective and Versatile Filter Performance
The presence of airborne pollutants, both particulates and gases, can be damaging to any museum collection or exhibit. Particles in the form of dirt, skin, salt, hair, etc., can rapidly collect on artifacts and display spaces if not properly managed.
Once this layer of dust forms, it makes an easy meal for small organisms and bugs, which can then lead to mice and other rodents. All of these are unwelcome guests in a museum, as their feeding activity and presence alone will assuredly cause damage to sensitive materials.
Topics: Museum HVAC Design, hvac filtration
KEY Factors FoR High Performance HVAC Design
When it comes to museum galleries, nothing is more important than ensuring the longevity of the precious artifacts located within. One of the most important aspects in preserving the integrity of special collections is the indoor air quality provided by the HVAC system.
Striking a careful balance between performance expectations, ambient weather conditions, and proper HVAC design will help to ensure that museum air quality meets the requirements of the specific artifacts in each gallery.
Topics: Museum HVAC Design