Construction 4.0 - digital, connected and certified

Press Release /

As part of the BIMSWARM project, Fraunhofer IGD is presenting its latest data visualization solutions and AR applications for the construction industry at Hannover Messe.

© Fraunhofer IGD

(Darmstadt/Hanover) Since April 2018, the BIMSWARM project has been tasked with assisting in fully digital project management for planning, constructing and managing buildings. The goal is to develop a platform for easily connecting different applications, services and content based on open standards. In the pursuit of this goal, it is important to make it easy to choose and combine different software tools for one-off business partnerships, which are common especially in the construction industry. As one of eight project partners, the Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research IGD is responsible for implementing its visualization services.

Optimizing communication processes with the BIM ticket system

The term BIM (Building Information Modeling) refers to the software-based planning, construction and management of buildings. BIM is used both in construction planning and in facility management. The starting point is creating a virtual model of the building -- this is where Fraunhofer IGD’s solutions come in. The visualization and tracking services provided by Fraunhofer IGD’s instant3Dhub technology are being developed further and integrated as a basic service in the background. As a certified component of BIMSWARM, it can format and process large data models, making it possible to compare reality to the CAD model of the building in real time. Developers can create building progress documentation in the form of ad hoc planned/actual comparisons and evaluate them. A ticket system allows the result to be communicated to everyone involved.

At Hannover Messe, the Fraunhofer team is presenting the ticket system along with its other project partners at the stand of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy, using a typical maintenance case in the area of facility management as an example. After accepting an appropriate ticket, an installer receives specific instructions for a perhaps previously unfamiliar building system and can get started immediately. Completion of the job is also documented in the ticket system and the next steps can be planned without delay.

The integration of the instant3dhub technology also assists building projects in various stages of construction, from planning to maintenance, with the help of augmented reality (AR). A depth-sensing camera scans the building in its real-world state, then a recreation using the resulting scatter plot is compared to the CAD data from the planning model. Without the background compression and visualization, this data would be far too extensive for convenient use, such as on a tablet.

Participating in the market through software standards

In the construction industry in particular, companies come together to plan and construct the buildings in alternating project communities. Differing software standards make project-specific collaboration more difficult and data needs to be laboriously converted from one tool to the other. At the same time, there is a plethora of IT solutions on the market and developers face the challenge of having to decide on the best applications for their specific case. BIMSWARM not only provides different tools, it also determines which ones the customer should choose and combine, depending on the circumstances. All included tools are certified, combinable with each other, and meet the latest professional and legal requirements. Open and web-based interfaces ensure individual components can be used in the existing systems/cloud solutions of various manufacturers. This is a particular benefit to medium-sized companies, which can easily combine existing IT solutions with new products. Not having the financial or staffing resources to develop their own digital solutions, small and medium-sized businesses save on costs with the BIMSWARM products and can more easily participating in a changing market.

The BIMSWARM sponsorship project is part of the technology program “Smart Service World II“, which is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. The goal by the time the project concludes in two years is to have a usable platform that presents customers with ready-to-use software solutions, including Fraunhofer IGD technology.