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  • Writer's pictureBarry James

What does MEP stand for /

Updated: Mar 25, 2020

The acronym MEP within the construction industry typically refers to Mechanical, Electrical and Public Health (or Plumbing) engineering building services installations or systems.

Mechanical building services may comprise heating, comfort cooling and ventilation systems.

Electrical building services consist of lighting (interior, exterior, emergency), power supply and distribution, telecommunications, containment, control, fire alarm and detection, security, lightning protection systems.

Public health can be used to refer to domestic water, foul drainage, surface water drainage services.

There are many other systems that can fall within the remit of a MEP engineer, for example, the various types of gas that may be employed within a building; low and zero carbon technologies; energy management systems.

When designing building systems, an integrated MEP engineering approach yields better results than specifying each building system in isolation. Interactions between building systems can be especially difficult to coordinate when the design process is isolated, with clashes in positioning of each services equipment becoming more likely.

MEP design is important for planning, decision making, accurate documentation, performance and cost-estimation, construction, and operating/maintaining the resulting facilities.

MEP specifically encompasses the in-depth design and selection of building services, as opposed to a tradesperson simply installing equipment. For example, a plumber may select and install a commercial hot water system based on common practice and regulatory codes. A team of MEP engineers will research the best design according to the principles of engineering, and supply installers with the specifications they develop. As a result, engineers working in the MEP field must understand a broad range of disciplines, including dynamics, mechanics, fluids, thermodynamics, heat transfer, chemistry, electricity, and information technology.

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