There’s lots happening about Digital Twinning at the moment, and Bentley’s recent announcement focusing on its collaboration with Siemens is just the tip of the iceberg. It relates to the creation of a digital entity that can be used to simulate the totality of the conditions and processes that drive the original model – so that you can analyse functions, test performances, run cycles, gauge practicalities – anything you like, in fact, without and before you have to do it for real. It is the next stage of BIM – missing a few levels, I suppose – helping people better understand the relationship of all elements in a building’s life cycle and to make better informed and more timely decisions.
A jocular ad on TV at the moment depicts a typical man and his ‘digital financial twin’ providing a similar service to manage his money more effectively, and in the motor industry every development in design is thoroughly tested digitally before the first ‘die is cast’. Autonomous delivery systems will not be practicable unless the urban areas are mapped out with real-time digital twins that enable driverless cars to plot an efficient route from A to B. They are all using ‘Digital Twins’. It just happens that Bentley has been the first to give the term a proper airing.
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