CATEGORY: Sustainability

Back to Blog Posts

What is Digital Twin?

There are many notable twins in the world today. You might even be a twin but do you know what a digital twin is.

Essentially, it’s a digital version of a physical object a dynamic up-to-date digital replica of a built asset or environment with the help of building information modeling (BIM), artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and the internet of things (IoT) technology. Data from the original asset is used to build and improve the digital twin by providing a precise up-to-date model of its original.

What is the benefit of a digital twin?

A digital twin can help designers, engineers, contractors, owners, and manufacturers create more efficient structures. Digital twins can help with everything from planning, design, and construction to operations and maintenance.

Consider a building that’s already been designed and constructed. Imagine there’s a digital twin of the entire facility from the roof to the HVAC to the mechanical engineering and plumbing systems.

Now imagine that sensors in the building provide the digital twin with real-time information the digital twin updates itself according to the data. Then, building owners can view areas where the building is aging or faulty and make improvements on a greater scale.

Multiple digital twins can be integrated in an entire ecosystem.

So how did digital twins get their start in the 1960s?

NASA was one of the first agencies to use mirroring technology to replicate systems in space. Notably, NASA created a replica of Apollo 13 which became critical in the midst of its challenging mission. Engineers were able to test solutions on the replica to avoid further disaster.

Dr. Michael Greaves, Chief Scientist for Advanced Manufacturing at the Florida Institute of Technology introduced the concept of the digital twin at an American Society of Mechanical Engineers Conference in 2002. He proposed a product lifecycle management center that contained the elements of a digital twin, the physical space, the virtual space, and the flow of information between the two.

The manufacturing industry was quick to adopt digital twins and the architecture engineering and construction industry followed suit with the help of technological advancements like BIM or building information modeling.


How has the digital twin evolved since then?

Today, digital twin technology plays a big part in the digital transformation of the design, engineering, construction, manufacturing, and maintenance industries. A digital twin starts with knowledge of the assets and spaces that make up a facility.

This type of descriptive twin is a live editable version of design and construction data such as a visual replica of assets or facilities. An informative twin has an added layer of operational and sensory data as more and more data is added the twin becomes richer and richer and more strongly linked to its physical counterpart.

Predictive twins are able to leverage this operational data for insights while comprehensive twins simulate future scenarios and consider what-if questions in the future twins will become autonomous able to learn and act on behalf of users because digital twins can gather key information about things like population growth, natural resource supply levels, and historical data on environmental disasters.

Digital twins can help build more resilient cities and infrastructures as the world changes.

Eventually, an entire ecosystem of digital twins will help industries respond to global challenges with powerful simultaneous changes right now.

Digital twins are helping operations and facility managers respond faster by removing the need for complex and time-consuming maintenance documents.

Owners can gather information from the design and build phases to make faster business decisions lowering operational and maintenance costs.

Professionals on site can predict material and labor cycles reducing waste and enhancing safety by helping professionals gain more insight into the inner workings of the

Digital twins are becoming partners in building a better future.

For more information about how it is being used, watch our webinar recording the two-part TECH Perspectives webinar series we did and hear from Microsoft, CallisonRTKL, and Stantec. 

Hear our discussion as we focus on the challenges of implementing, managing, and measuring Digital Twin solutions.



Read More

Integrating Building Energy Modeling with Microsol Resources and EDSL

Microsol Resources Corporation is pleased to announce the addition of UK-based Environmental Design Solutions Limited (EDSL) to its growing association of technology partners.

EDSL, the company behind the accredited software Tas, provides a complete solution for the dynamic simulation and thermal analysis of buildings. Tas helps design and engineering firms create building models for simulation, perform climate-based daylight modeling analysis, and calculate energy consumption, CO2, and cost information. Tas also allows users to visualize building simulation data in 2D and 3D with presentation-quality graphics.

“We are delighted to partner with EDSL to offer Tas, allowing designers, engineers, and architects to predict building energy use while designing new buildings and retrofits”, said Emilio Krausz, President of Microsol Resources. “Tas is already a leading building modeling and simulation tool in the UK, and it is our goal to elevate it to the same position in the US market. There is an absolute need for a turnkey solution for building performance software, and EDSL provides it.”

“Joining forces with Microsol Resources gives us the opportunity to share our technology and Tas with a wider audience and to successfully implement growth in a new territory,” said Dr. Alan Jones, Managing Director of EDSL. “Our goal is to deliver a building energy modeling tool that assists design and engineering firms in furthering their commitment to sustainable, environmentally-friendly design, and to meet owners’ sustainability goals for their facilities including LEED and other certifications.”

This latest partnership reinforces Microsol Resources’ dedication to matching business needs with products and support—one of the many reasons that the company has received numerous recent accolades and exceptional rankings in customer satisfaction.

To start this new partnership, Microsol Resources is hosting an online event on February 13, 2020, at 1 pm EST. The event is called “Discover How to Integrate Building Energy Modeling with Tas”. To learn more, register for this event


Read More

Discover How to Go Green Using Bluebeam Revu

Every construction project has a specific set of documents that are vital for the overall success of the project, including drawing, contracts, specifications and other important information. To create a full set of architectural drawings, companies use an incredible amount of paper. In order to be able to communicate with the team, these drawings must be distributed to each relevant team member. If a project manager or a general contractor decides to create a RFI, new copies of the drawings have to be printed and redistribute to the team to notify any change. If the copies aren’t delivered in time or if someone involved is left out, it can lead to serious delays in construction, and significant cost overruns.

As noted by the Construction Industry Institute, construction firms spend an estimated $15 billion a year performing rework on projects due to inaccuracies in the initial drawings, failure to distribute new versions of drawings to subcontractors, and discrepancies between builders and architects.

Here is when Bluebeam comes to revolutionize the way PDF documents are used and shared. With Bluebeam Revu, any person involved in the project can easily and intuitively upload architectural drawings into a single master set, that is automatically organized, named and numbered. Bluebeam Revu allows architects, engineers and construction professionals adapt digital workflows that span the entire project lifecycle, from site surveys and field reports to design review and punch.

No matter where you are, you can edit and markup PDFs on the go, and collaborate in real time by using Revu on a Windows tablet or iPad. You can also mark documents and send out RFIs easily and effectively without having to worry about having the information lost.

Bluebeam editing tools let you edit text, apply headers and footers, assemble files, and add, delete or rotate pages while PDF markup tools let you redline 2D and 3D PDFs with customizable markups tools such as text, notes, highlighter, lines, clouds, callouts, stamps and more. The measurement tools let you take measurements, count from PDFs, and perform area cutouts electronically, this not only saves you time, but saves money on the overall project.  You can also add formulas to the built-in worksheet using the Formula Editor to calculate costs in Revu.

If you’re ready to purchase your Bluebeam Revu licenses, please make sure to visit our Online Store.

Have more questions? Please don’t hesitate to contact us at

To learn more about how Bluebeam is allowing architects, engineers and construction professionals to adapt digital workflows that span the entire project life-cycle, from site surveys and field reports to design review and punch, you can view our webinar on Discover How to Go Green Using Bluebeam Revu. 

Bluebeam Revu

Read More

Latest Tweets

MicrosolTweets @MicrosolTweets
Enscape 3.2 now available! Learn more about what's new and the latest features here -…
RT @ChaosGroup:We're excited to announce that @Enscape3d and @ChaosGroup have merged into one company to create a comprehensive en…
Load More...