"Building information modeling – we’re a step ahead when it comes to planning sustainability."For her master’s thesis three years ago, Dantong Yang wanted an environment that thought in larger dimensions, just like she did. At the Siemens central research unit in Munich she found what she was looking for. Her work back then resulted in a breakthrough in energy simulations for building technology development. Today, Dantong Yang specializes at Siemens in the digitalization of buildings and the construction industry and in doing so is generating valuable data for the future.
Dantong Yang studied building and energy technology at the universities of Shanghai and Stuttgart, and even as a young woman she had big plans. "I have always wanted to help solve humankind’s problems and make the world a little bit better," she explains with a grin. But she’s being completely serious. "During my university studies, I worked at a variety of companies involved in the building technology sector – from businesses in manufacturing to consulting, software, and research," she adds. It soon became clear to her, however, that for her master’s thesis in building and energy technology she needed an environment that thought in larger dimensions – both in terms of time and specialism.
"Four years ago I applied to complete my master’s thesis at Siemens Corporate Technology, the Siemens central research unit in Munich. The title of my topic was ‘Automated Energy Evaluation for Buildings with High Quality Requirements Based on BIM’." Her supervisor was Christian Frey, Innovation Manager at Smart Infrastructure. He was convinced that Yang’s master’s thesis work of analyzing and optimizing energetic profiles of buildings that were already in the planning stage would be a breakthrough. "Naturally, I’m especially pleased to see that my master’s thesis has made a contribution to putting Siemens a step ahead when it comes to BIM." After completing her master’s thesis, Dantong Yang joined the Technology and Innovation unit and found a new home at the CTO office in Siemens Smart Infrastructure.
Naturally, I’m especially pleased to see that my master’s thesis has made a contribution to putting Siemens a step ahead when it comes to BIM.Dantong Yang, Systems Engineer for BIM and Digitalization, Siemens Smart Infrastructure, Zug
Fully tapping the potential of BIM through digital twins
Today, Dantong Yang leverages the full potential of BIM through comprehensive 360-degree applications that incorporate the client, competitor, technological, and software perspective and much more. "BIM opens up exciting new perspectives for architects, engineers, entrepreneurs, and buildings’ users alike," explains Dantong Yang. To enable buildings to be planned, built, and operated with comprehensive dovetailing across all trade applications and throughout the entire life cycle, a digital twin of the building is created that models all the data. Yang developed a Web application for this purpose that is based on cloud computing. This exciting simulation tool comprises a multitude of parameters to pinpoint – from building type (factory, administrative building, hospital, etc.), the city or town in which the building is located and the climate of the region (data saved over the past 100 years) to the type of building insulation, various room sizes, and numerous other relevant factors. "With a single click you can play through various building automation scenarios and are then given a conclusive report with data on future annual energy consumption and costs," Yang explains.
The system is dynamic, so if you change the building’s insulation, for instance, you can immediately see the impact this has on energy consumption, carbon emissions, and costs. The benefit for both the customer and the environment is plain to see. "Realizing innovative ideas in such a way that they create added value for the client while at the same time reducing the impact on the environment is truly my passion," asserts Dantong Yang.
Realizing innovative ideas in such a way that they create added value for the client while at the same time reducing the impact on the environment is truly my passion.Dantong Yang, Systems Engineer for BIM and Digitalization, Siemens Smart Infrastructure, Zug
"No one is an expert on the future; we’re all just experts on the past," she philosophizes. The path to the digital age presents us with exciting new developments, but also great unknowns. "It is our generation’s responsibility to shape the future and to embark on this journey with the help of new technologies and the right people," says Yang. This is exactly what she intends to do at Siemens.