Introduction to OpenBIM, Native IFC, and Open Source AEC | by Dion Moult

This introduction to OpenBIM, Native IFC, and Open Source AEC was given as a keynote speech at the CAAD Futures conference in 2021.

Go #OpenBIM, go #OpenSource. Watch this video and see how #BIM data actually works!

This introduction to Native IFC covers all the basic concepts, code, libraries, and tools to get started building your own Open Source AEC tools.OSArch:

buildingSMART International appoints Léon van Berlo as the Technical Director

London, (July 19, 2019) – buildingSMART International has appointed Léon van Berlo as its Technical Director.

Léon has previously served a variety of roles at the National Institute for Innovation (TNO) in the Netherlands, including BIMserver Program Manager and Senior BIM Innovator. At TNO, Léon’s work has been focused on creating a data-driven industry through technological adoption and developing new concepts. By enabling new prototypes through consensus building and collaboration, Léon developed new products for market-based demand, including large EU funded projects. During this time, Léon also worked on several open standards and BIM standardization initiatives for international audiences. As a thought-leader on BIM and openBIM initiatives, Léon provides the right expertise to the growing community of buildingSMART.

buildingSMART International organises its work in three board programs. The User Program, the Solutions and Standards Program and the Compliance Program. The User Program is engaged with front line users in countries around the world. The Solutions and Standards Program’s primary focus is to develop new technical solutions followed by international consensus-building leading to new international industry standards. The Compliance Program promotes verification and certification schemes which are necessary to support effective deployment and deliver confidence in the data exchanges and use of the standards.

The appointment of a Technical Director is a key milestone for buildingSMART in the development of these programs and to assist the community in delivering successful outcomes and building confidence about future technical plans.

In this role, Léon will work closely with the community to develop a forward-looking Technical Road Map. He will be the chair of Standard Committee Technical Executive (SCTE), addressing technical harmonisation across activities and will facilitate structured engagement with vendors focussed on implementations. Another major component will be to support innovative approaches to standards maintenance, open source software providers, and reference implementations of buildingSMART standards.

Richard Petrie, buildingSMART International Chief Executive, said “the appointment of Léon as the Technical Director will help with the development of a Technology Road Map for our standards and putting in place the technical underpinning to support greater crowdsourcing of solutions is a key goal for buildingSMART International. This appointment will help strengthen the coordination needed across our vast and fast-growing community. Léon will add the technical know-how to expand the use of buildingSMART International tools, coupled with the expertise and experience working with other technical leaders. This makes this appointment so key for our collective forward-looking outlook”.

source: buildingsmart

Airport Room, call for participation










buildingSMART International is launching a new specialist Room for developing and deploying open digital standards specifically for the Airport environment. The Asset Management department at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport is taking the lead in creating this with us.airport-sign-e1468482272932

The benefits to be derived are:

  • Unification of digital standards to enable more efficient working from the common supply chain.
  • Enable Asset management decisions based on cost, risk and performance for the entire lifecycle of airport facilities to be easier to make and more robust
  • Make innovative design and build solutions, reducing disruption at the Airport, easier to justify and re-purposing of the facilities easier to execute.
  • Enable economies of scale with the supply chain and maintenance suppliers. Currently each airport group is developing its own BIM standards and there is not a uniform data exchange format to approach the market for airport facilities (eg. APBB, LEPC, airfield lights, scanners etc.).
  • Link to the wider buildingSMART Industry Foundation Class (IFC) environment to allow Airport Asset Managers to use the IFC developments for Buildings and Infrastructure in their portfolio.

The official launch of the Airport Room will be on the 28 September 2016 at our Summit in Korea.

A pre meeting will be held on 26 August 2016 at Schiphol Airport.

We invite all interested parties to contact us for further details.


source: buildingSMART | international home of openBIM

New buildingSMART Chapter in Switzerland

swiss-flag270-1On 12 January, a new buildingSMART chapter was launched in Switzerland. Its host organisation, Bauen Digital Schweiz (Digital Construction Switzerland) is an industry wide group formed to lead digitization of the built asset owners, their construction and facility operation supply chains as well as organisations and associations linked to construction sector.

‘Following the creation of Bauen Digital Schweiz and the launch of buildingSMART Switzerland, we are moving into the next phase of implementation and development and ask our Swiss partners to play an active part in shaping these important changes,’ said Peter Scherer

‘The new chapter has the reach and the insight to allow it to become a major player in rolling out collaborative working based on open technology,’ said Chris Groome, business manager and company secretary who manages the chapter programme.
Swissbau 2016 | Swissbau Focus | IG Bauen digital Schweiz und buildingSMART International

Swissbau 2016 | Swissbau Focus | IG Bauen digital Schweiz und buildingSMART International
Swissbau 2016 | Swissbau Focus | IG Bauen digital Schweiz und buildingSMART International

buildingSMART has worldwide reach and operates in countries through a network of country chapters. These chapters ensure local needs are understood, promote industry change and assist with deployment of new tools and working methods.

source: buildingSMART | international home of openBIM

buildingSMART International Standards Summit – The Netherlands | April 2016

Benelux Chapter hosts buildingSMART International Standards Summit, April 11 – April 14 2016 | Rotterdam!


We are pleased to invite buildingSMART members and their guests to attend the buildingSMART International spring summit in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

The summit is a special opportunity to meet with world leaders in the development and delivery of open sharable data. We expect all the buildingSMART Chapters from around the world to be represented, providing an opportunity for experts to share knowledge for further enhancement of buildingSMART’s openBIM processes and standards.

There will be plenary sessions giving information about the most recent standards, processes, tools and projects, as well as working sessions dealing with key themes.

The venue is De Doelen

The schedule for the event and registration details will be available shortly.

Source: buildingSMART


London Watford Standards Summit Successes

Over 160 people from 19 different nations gathered in London Watford for the buildingSMART International Standards Conference.


Key milestones achieved during the summit include:

  • The inaugural meeting of the Standards Committee (SC) took place
  • The Standards Process, launched in Toronto, was used throughout the summit
  • The Standards Committee Executive (SCE) agreed to put forward, S1004 IFC alignment 1.0 and S1001 Coordination MVDs for IFC4 (Design Transfer View) and S1002 (Reference View), for endorsement as bSI Final Standard
  • 4 Initiation requests were received to create a bSI Standard Proposal
  • 1 Development request to approve as bSI Candidate Standard
  • 4 Deployment request to approve as bSI Final Standard
  • Room Charters continued to be developed ready for final issue in June

The full set of resolutions and presentations from the summit are posted at Standards Summit Program

View the Activities list for a complete picture of Standards and Technical Reports progress

buildingSMART International thanks the UK Chapter, their sponsors and BRE for the excellent organisation and hospitality.


IFC4 coordination view project underway

New model view definitions will speed uptake of IFC4

A project to create a model view definition for IFC4 launched on 1 January and is now half-way through its workplan. The development of this essential tool is being done by buildingSMART’s Model Support Group, led by Thomas Liebich, and work is expected to complete in August. The tool is key to unlocking the benefits of IFC4 and allowing end-users to achieve swift, open workflows.

‘The coordination view for IFC 2×3 was broadly acknowledged to have been very successful,’ says Thomas. ‘But now that we are moving on to a model view definition for IFC4, we have the opportunity to learn from past experiences.’

Why is the model coordination view needed? A model view definition (MVD) is a subset of the IFC standard. ‘Software solutions supporting IFC are always based on an MVD – a subset that meets the needs of one or more particular use cases,’ Thomas explains. ‘The coordination view is probably the most important tool for implementing IFC in commercial software products.’The main use case of the coordination view is to support the exchange of information between the separate models of the structural, architectural and building services disciplines. The architectural design mustn’t obstruct the structural elements and the building services mustn’t block either the structure or the architecture: for this reason, the clash detection support of IFC has long been valued. It is regularly cited as one of the greatest benefits of IFC. A number of other use cases are also covered in the MVD, including consistency control, building code checking, the coordination of voids and tighter integration of architectural, mechanical and structural design and detailing.

IFC4 coordination view
IFC4 coordination view

Swift and easier to use: the new coordination view. Coordination planning and clash detection represent one of the most important workflows today. The IFC 2×3 coordination view was widely implemented by software vendors who submitted their products for bS certification – and overall it commanded the confidence of the market. But end-users were in practice often frustrated because it did not distinguish between different workflows.

The many demands made of it meant that heavy computation was necessary and this in turn led to long loading times for import and export. For certain activities, the complex geometry inherent in the view, and the way it operated, made it cumbersome. It was providing a sledgehammer to crack a nut, or – as Thomas puts it – ‘it was shooting beyond the mark’. To resolve this problem, the Model Support Group decided to split the coordination view into two sub-views: the IFC4 reference view and the IFC design transfer or handover view. The goal of the reference view is to enable the swift, accurate exchange of information between disciplines for reference. As the definition of the project explains, the view must allow 100% correct explicit geometry and 100% correct attributes, properties and spatial structures, with rapid export and import times and no need for rework. The goal of the design transfer view – this is a working title – is to allow the BIM model to be handed over to the next stage of editing, which is likely to be a once-and-for-all adoption, with a modicum of rework and longer import/export times acceptable. Responsibility for the transferred model is likely to be taken over by the receiver. ‘While providing a generic solution, we are able to meet the separate needs of reference and transfer,’ says Thomas.

What next? The project, stage one of which is funded by the Norwegian National Office of Building Technology and Administration, is expected to complete in two phases in July and September. Software companies can then start to implement the view in their software products, with buildingSMART certification to IFC4 due to begin some time in 2015. ‘Results of our work will provide immediate benefits,’ concludes Thomas. ‘End users will be able to use open solutions for collaborative workflows, clients can require project information to be delivered in an open format and software vendors will be able give their customers design tools that work fast and efficiently.’

Source: buildingSMART newsletter nr. 16

Reports and resolutions from the October 2012 bSI meeting in Tokyo | on

The reports and resolutions from the October working group and committee meetings in Tokyo are now available from the buildingSMART website.

Reports from the workshops and meetings

Outcomes from the Product Room Workshop
Outcomes from the Process Room Workshop
Outcomes from the International User Group (IUG) meeting
Outcomes from the International Technical Management (ITM) Committee meeting


Read a summary of all the resolutions from the Tokyo event