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Lu S, Amor R, Donn M

An internet-based building simulation quality assurance system

Abstract: Building environmental design decision support tools in architecture are not well used, even though there exists a wide range of tools for thermal, lighting, structural, etc simulation. Previous work has looked at the issues which inhibit the use of these decision support tools (Donn et al. 2001) and determined that a simulation quality assurance system would help practitioners to trust the predictions of a simulation system. This paper describes the development of a distributed building simulation quality control system. The basic premise behind this work is that we can determine the reliability of the results of an individual simulation through comparison with previous quality assured simulations. This requires a test to determine whether an e-building is real, where real is some measure relating the behaviour of the e-building to know real building behaviour. To make this test we collate a case base of quality assured ebuildings with which we can compare the submitted e-building. The development of the case base is drawn from the Internet by developing the semantic web concept. This requires simulationists to provide meta-data describing their simulations which is then harvested across the WWW, along with the simulations, to form a global and distributed simulation case base. This paper describes the Internet-based system which has been developed to collate the case base from interested simulationists (comprising XML-based meta-data and simulation files) and utilise it in comparing with a submitted e-building. The comparison system utilises XML-based information management approaches tied to case-based reasoning to create this high-performance decision support system for architects.

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Class: class.collaboration (0.023565) class.represent (0.023192) class.software-software (0.018121)
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M Weise & P Katranuschkov

Supporting State-based Transactions in Collaborative Product Modelling Environments

Abstract: The up to date state and the consistency of shared building model data are of utmost importance for the achievement of efficient model-based collaborative work. However, in engineering design these are not easy tasks. Design activities are typically carried out in long transactions that are characterized by the following three subtasks: check-out of the needed design data into a private workspace, making design changes within the private workspace, and check-in of a new model state into the shared model repository to make changes and decisions visible to the other designers. As a result of various existing semantic interoperability problems, in the new model state both actual design changes and data loss have to be considered that cannot be easily distinguished. To help tackle these problems we suggest a delta-based versioning approach whose essence is in storing design changes instead of complete design states. This approach is then used as basis to support the three data processing stages of a design step within a collaborative work environment, namely (1) creation of the needed and manageable model subset by removing all irrelevant design data, (2) storing the design changes, and (3) restoring the removed data by an ""undo"" operation of the first step. In the paper we present the used semantics for describing design changes, their transformation to deltas and the scope and limits of the suggested undo operation. At the end we provide an example of the use of the suggested approach with the industry standard IFC model and discuss its potential and needed further research.""

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Series: w78:2005 (browse)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the Technische Universität Dresden.


Manfred Breit, Manfred Vogel, Fritz Ha_ubi, Fabian Ma_rki, Marco Soldati, La_szlo_ Istva_n Etesi, Nicky Hochmuth, Andreas Walther

ENHANCEMENT OF VIRTUAL DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION METHODS

Abstract: In this paper we report about a three-tier applied R&D approach for the Enhancement of Virtual Design and Construction methods at the Institute of 4D Technologies UAS, North¬¬western Switzerland (i4Ds). In collaboration with the CAD vendor and developer cadwork informatik AG our research focuses on technology, its intro¬duction into the market the effects and difficulties of the tool use and the induced process changes. We will describe the methodlogy, the expected outcomes of the enhancements, the research approach, initial findings and the further proceedings.In the first tier cadworks introduces an intuitive integrated 4D modeler called (LexoCad or Baubit CAD) for contractors which is commercially available since one year. Analogue to playing with building blocks users create 3D building models and 4D phasing models for the construction of the building directly from 2D pdf drawings. The expected outcome are that the virtual building blocks serve as a test-bed for constructability analyzes, enhanced planning reliability, better coordination and communication, optimized procurement and wide-spread use in practice. The next two tiers of VDC enhancements are currently developed at i4Ds. For the second tier we introduce a semantic, flexible, database-backed, object-oriented data structure for hierarchically structured Product, Organization and Process models (POP models) with an enhanced intuitive 3D/4D graphical user interface for the rapid generation of design alternatives. Users can easily propagate information to related property sets of construction elements and assemblies. Behavior methods (scripts) can be assigned for a variety of tasks e.g. BOM creation, construction method modeling, creation of cost performance predictions etc. This approach technology-wise moves the model management from the modeler or viewer components to the data base domain. The flexible hierarchies not only allow users to manually restructure and rearrange the model to their needs but enable automatic AI optimizers to even alter the construction method e.g. timber element, precast concrete or masonry walls etc. The expected outcomes are a pro-active 4D planning, rapid generation, comparison and evaluation of POP- design- alternatives, derivation von case from existing designs, easy and effective integration of client information into POP models, creating performance predictions (quality, time, cost, risk, etc.) from this models, easy creation of 4D sub-models for knowledge transfer for inter-disciplinary cooperation.In the third tier we introduce a novel process design concept which we named Process Design Patterns (PDPs). They are based on Christopher Alexander's (1977) concept of design pattern as a formal way of documenting successful solutions to problems and as templates describing how to solve problems of a particular domain. In a study, we called Process Archeology, we chose a recently finished four storey residential concrete building and reconstructed and re-modeled the over-all building processes with an inter-disciplinary team. Therefore we created the necessary 3D-, 4D- and process- and organization- models with commercial available modeling tools. We were able to derive one generic and seven specific PDPs for the whole erection of the building. We describe a strategy to apply PDPs directly on 3D building information models (BIM) to automate and optimize the planning process.

Keywords: Virtual Design and Construction, 4D Modeling, Product, Process and Organization Modeling and Simulation, Process Design Patterns

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Series: w78:2008 (browse)
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Moller B, Hoffmann A, Kluger J

Assessment of critical load situations during the life cycle of concrete structures

Abstract: In dimensioning reinforced concrete structures in accordance with EC2, an alternative method of describing the system load-bearing behaviour is by nonlinear simulations over significant periods of the life cycle. The realistic reinforced concrete FE model presented here takes into account nonlinear material laws for concrete and steel, fracture behaviour and composite action as well as viscous behaviour (nonlinear creep and shrinkage). Considering the example of a reinforced concrete box-type folded plate structure, critical loading situations (especially high shear loads) were investigated which lead to system failure at different times in the life cycle of the structure. System load-bearing reserves are clearly indicated by resultant stress redistributions.

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Series: ecce:1997 (browse)
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Nassar K M, Beliveau Y

Integration of parametric geometric modeling and construction simulation

Abstract: In early ages 'Designing' of a building could not be differentiated from 'building' it, since the Master Builder was also the designer. With the increased complexity of design, this arrangement changed. Currently designing a building and constructing it are two different tasks. The description of design is done using drawings, whether in 2 or 3 dimensions, while construction operations is usually described by means of construction schedules. Three-dimensional details of building assemblies are often used for describing the design details. If we can describe the building details parametrically with construction operations only, then we can save time in developing assembly details and improve constructability. This paper describes a new approach to store design description of assembly details as intelligent objects. Each of these objects represents a building assembly. These assemblies are linked to a database of networks, that generically describe how the assemblies are built/drawn (i.e. the components used and the geometric/construction operations). A prototype system EASYBUILD is introduced.

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Full text: content.pdf (226,142 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1999 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.economic (0.027330) class.analysis (0.012254) class.software development (0.007903)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the Research Press of the National Research Council of Canada. The support of the editors, particularly Dr. Dana Vanier, is gratefully appreciated.


Noack, Robert

Converting CAD Drawings to Product Models

Abstract: The fundamental aim of this study is to examine whether it is possible to automatically convert vector-based drawings to product models. The reason for doing this is that the new object-based systems cannot make use of the information stored in CAD drawings, which limits the usability of these systems. Converting paper drawings to vector-format is used today and provides recognition of lines and text, but does not interpret what the shapes represent. A language for describing the geometrical representations that could be processed directly into a recognition program for building elements is missing. It is easier to describe how to recognize a line as a series of dots in a raster image, than it is to describe how a complex symbol of a building element looks like. The approach in this research work has been to test different shape recognition algorithms. The proposed method can be divided into four processes: grouping of geometrical primitives, classifying these groups, interpreting the content and analyzing the relationships between the groups. The algorithms developed here are based on research within related domains, such as pattern recognition and artificial intelligence. The algorithms have been developed in a prototype implementation and were tested with three layer-structured drawings used in practice. The results of the tests show that there are no crucial obstacles to recognizing a large part of the symbols of building elements in a CAD drawing. The requirement is that the recognition system is able to differentiate one from another and be tolerant of errors and variations in the shapes.

Keywords: Product Model, CAD

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P B Kagan, T A Barabanova

The Formal Language for Describing Technological Processes in Construction

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Series: w78:2014 (browse)
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Pantouvakis J P

Software tools for the implementation of relational databases describing the building product

Abstract: The implementation of relational databases describing the building product has to face difficulties imposed by the very nature of buildings, such as large amounts of data with complex interrelationships which are time and place dependent and dynamically changing integrity constraints. This paper suggests that a successful implementation should be based on relatively few concepts and a set of powerful techniques by which these concepts can be transformed into a database. Subsequently, these techniques can be used as the basis for the development of software tools. When software tools are available, the creation and/or modification of the database describing the building product can be easily achieved. Two such tools have been identified, designed and implemented at Nottingham University and are described in this paper. A database design tool, based on state-of-the-art relational database theory and a generalized integrity preservation tool. These tools can be linked together to form an integrated building product modeling environment. The major advantage of this approach is that the dynamic in nature Building Product Model produced is independent from software and hardware systems and is capable of adapting to different working practices.

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Full text: content.pdf (2,418,829 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1988 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.store (0.016589) class.environment (0.010394) class.represent (0.009569)
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Permission to reproduce these documents has been graciously provided by the Lund University and the Swedish Building Centre. The assistance of the editors, Prof. Per Christiansson and Prof. Henry Karlsson, is gratefully appreciated.


Pilgrim M, Bouchlaghem D, Holmes M, Loveday D

Visualisation in building design and analysis

Abstract: "Research on data visualisation is undergoing major developments in a number of different fields. These developments include investigating ways of applying visualisation techniques and systems for more efficient manipulation, interpretation and presentation of data. Research into applied visualisation has so far taken place in the fields of Computational Fluid Dynamics, Medicine, Social Sciences, and the Environment. In the built environment field however, the potential of new visualisation technologies to enhance the presentation of performance data from simulation programmes (of the type used by engineering design consultants, for example) has remained almost unexplored. Improvements in this area would lead to a better and more efficient use of these simulation programs and would facilitate the interpretation of such output data by construction industry professionals, leading to better, more informed design decisions. This paper presents an initial study on Data Visualisation and its effective use in the thermal analysis of buildings. Much of the current data visualisation in the engineering and scientific world focuses on very large data sets produced by applications such as FEA, CFD or GIS. As such the tools developed to date are often too expensive or not appropriate for the visualisation of the relatively smaller data sets produced by thermal analysis tools. The objective of the work summarised here was to develop a method of visualising the data produced by the thermal analysis tools which would run on an average desktop PC and be easy to maintain/customise and above all present the data in an intuitive manner. A workplace observational study of several engineers performing such an analysis revealed each was spending a significant amount of time manipulating the output within commercial spreadsheet packages. Further studies revealed the most common tasks were the inspection of predicted internal conditions, location of glazed elements transmitting significant solar radiation and the identification of high internal surface temperatures. Two applications were therefore proposed. The first is designed to automatically process the output within the spreadsheet environment. The second is designed to display the solution in three dimensions to aid spatial recognition and data navigation. The spreadsheet tools were developed over a period of several months and then released to all users of the analysis tools. The 3D tool was developed over a longer period and has been subjected to small group tests. Each tool was developed using Microsoft Visual Basic making them both easy to maintain and freely available. The 3D tool reads in flat text files produced by the analysis and automatically generates a framed HTML page with an embedded 3D VRML world describing the building and its results. This study shows that each of the proposed applications significantly improves some of the attributes associated with usability, namely; learnability, efficiency, memorability, errors and satisfaction. The spreadsheet tool increased efficiency and decreased errors but offered no real satisfaction. The 3D tool offers increased satisfaction but at present does not efficiently present all of the data required. Finally, It is possible to develop low cost Data Visualisation tools to improve the overall usability of a thermal analysis tool within a built environment consultantcy."

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Series: w78:2000 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.social (0.027102) class.environment (0.018138) class.economic (0.016196)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by Icelandic Building Research Institute. The assistance of the editor, Mr. Gudni Gudnason, is gratefully appreciated


R Schijf

Modelling at the Earliest Design Stage

Abstract: Starting point is that between the 70's, if not earlier, and now, many theories and related diagrams have circulated, describing the (building) design process from initiative to productions, or even demolition. But none of them appears very practical when it comes to explain where and how CAD fits in. By now we have hundreds of CAD-tools to our availability, most of them standing alone, some of them more or less integrated, but we seem to lack the sort of infrastructure which places them in the design process and shows their position relative to other CAD-tools.

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Series: w78:1984 (browse)
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