One of the biggest challenges with embracing BIM (building information modeling) throughout concept through completion on a construction project is often the lack of interoperability among the various software platforms used by the different companies. But this challenge is beginning to be addressed by new initiatives and technology developments aimed at helping improve BIM in the construction industry.
This week, at Ecobuild in London, NBS, www.thenbs.com, London, England, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Royal Institute of British Architects, is unveiling a new National BIM Library, which is a platform-neutral database with generic BIM objects. The library is accessible online and free of charge for architects, contractors, interior designs, and other construction professionals in the U.K.
The models will initially be available in IFC, but will be delivered in a number of proprietary formats in the future. The library will offer manufacturers the opportunity to have objects authored to the new standard and hosted in the National BIM Library. According to NBS, in the U.K., 75% of construction professionals currently aware of BIM predict they will be using BIM on some projects by the end of this year, and 95% expect to be using BIM within five years.
This announcement follows last week’s news about the official launch of buildingSMART’s, www.buildingsmart.com, Washington, D.C., Open BIM initiative for the AEC industry. Open BIM is a universal approach to collaborative design based on open standards and workflows, and many software providers are already using the open buildingSMART data model. With an Open BIM Certification from buildingSMART, AEC software vendors can test and certify their data connections to work with other Open BIM solutions.
For the construction industry, initiatives such as this will improve workflow from one discipline to the next, which means team members can continue working in their native solution without risking incompatibility with other pieces of software.
The NBS along with BIM academy and other involved parties, today launched the new National BIM Library at Ecobuild 2012. The new website which was also announced contains pre-made standard object configurations which are compatible with Revit, ArchiCAD, Tekla, Vectorworks and Bentley. The site also has links to manufacturer specific content and other useful documents and videos.
“The National BIM Library contains over 200 pre-configured generic objects covering all major building fabric systems such as walls, ceilings, roofs and floors. And this list is set to expand even further, with new content added every few weeks, to make the National BIM Library the primary source of free-to-use platform neutral UK BIM Objects.
Also, it will soon be home to a wide range of NBS standard proprietary objects. A number of manufacturers are currently working with us to convert their products to BIM objects.”
Click here to view the NBS National BIM Library website.