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Paper convr-2013-49:
Checking spatio-semantic consistency of building information models by means of a query language

Facilitated by the SciX project

Daum S,Borrmann A

Checking spatio-semantic consistency of building information models by means of a query language

Abstract: One of the characteristic features of object-based Building Information Models is the close integration of geometric and semantic information into one model. This concept is thoroughly implemented by the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC), a comprehensive data model designed to provide a sound foundation for complex data exchange scenarios. Besides the provision of a large variety of data types for capturing the semantics of building elements and spaces, the IFC also makes it possible to define relationships between building elements and/or spaces, respectively. In particular, a spatial aggregation hierarchy can be modeled by successively applying the relationship IfcRelAggregates to space objects. However, no validation options currently exist to check whether the semantically defined aggregation hierarchy complies with the geometric setup of the individual spaces and building elements. This lack of consistency between the semantic and the geometric part of the BIM model may lead to serious data interpretation errors at the receiving end. To prevent this, we propose a new method for validating spatio-semantic consistency based on the usage of the Query Language for Building Information Models (QL4BIM) which on the one hand provides a means of accessing the IFC object model and on the other hand provides high-level spatial operators, such as Disjoint, Touching and Containing. The formulation of corresponding queries makes it possible to verify the spatio-semantic consistency of the IFC model. The paper discusses application scenarios and provides a number of relevant examples.

Keywords: BIM,IFC,Topology,Validation,Consistency,Spatial Relationships


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