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Refrigerant Lines & VRF Units Coordinated with BIM

The building owner wished to organize the placement of both condenser and VRF units on their property’s rooftop to satisfy both design and mechanical requirements. From an aesthetic standpoint, the owner wanted to ensure that the units could not be seen from the street level. At the same time, ownership also wanted the placement optimized for minimal refrigerant lines horizontally crossing as they feed down into the building.

We created a detailed 3D model and came to an ideal VRF and condenser unit placement with the owner and their design team. Once this was established our team began to coordinate the refrigerant lines going down into all the units. With the rest of the BIM model, we were able to find ideal paths for all lines and reviewed with ownership for approval. 

With a coordinated 3D model accounting for all the refrigerant pipe going to each unit, we then produced detailed shop drawings, isometric drawings, along with a detailed materials schedule. For the construction process, having parametric information associated with the model is critical. Each line has the the following information associated (color coded by line size, apartment unit, condenser unit, AC unit in apartment, total line length and associated riser number). 

For this particular project Helm was already the BIM Trade Coordination Consultant for the full project. What this means is that our team was able to use the models and documentation from our standard process to provide additional coordination services in the form of extra work orders, this effort being one of them. There are times when owners and builders wish to make additional evaluations outside the scope of what a standard MEP coordination effort includes. Having a BIM team that understands coordination and and construction allows for valuable information like this to organized and delivered quickly. 

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