Turn-Over and Operations of the NBIMS Building
Saturday, November 24, 2007 at 09:43PM
Toby Considine in BIM

In a previous post, (Building Information Modeling),I described Building Modeling, the Building Information Model, and the difference between them. I later (NBIMS during Building Design and Construction) described why the owner is benefits from the use of BIM during building acquisition. Here I will describe how the use of BIM affects maintenance and operations of the new facility.

It is difficult to make effective use of the shelf of binders handed over with each building as an operating manual. Recently services have arisen that offer to put these documents in electronic form. All documents are placed in Acrobat (PDF) format and delivered on a DVD. It is not clear to me that a DVD with several hundred PDF files is much more useful than that old shelf of binders.

NASA attacked this problem by extending NBIMS into maintenance and operations. The Common Operations Building Information Exchange (COBIE) is an initiative to codify the electronic handover of information from NBIMS to operations. COBIE defines formats for transmission of maintenance schedules, spare parts information, and system schematics. COBIE defines a standard for direct import of this information into Computerized Maintenance Management Systems (CMMS).

The part of COBIE that I like best is that it defines metadata to link system commissioning reports to the original design in NBIMS. Commissioning is the process whereby operations verifies that they have gotten what the design promised. For now, COBIE lets commissioning reports be linked directly to the CMMS. Even if they are only hand written, they can be scanned and be linked automatically to work orders on that equipment using that metadata. For the first time, maintenance personnel can have direct access to information on how each system performed originally.

The next generation of COBIE will make this link tighter. The energy models will become the formal basis for intelligent commissioning. The information from the energy model will travel though the construction process into operations through COBIE. This may lead to automated commissioning. If we can automate commissioning off of live systems data, we can extend it though the life of the building. Perpetual Commissioning directly from automated systems will be the next great leap in building efficiency. On-line analysis of building performance as well as providing a hook for new performance approaches.

Next Generation systems envision agile interaction between disparate building systems through high level abstract interfaces. Such interfaces hide the inner complexity of systems and enable interaction with other systems without extensive integration. Systems exposing such interfaces can be quickly re-combined without expensive re-integration.

As we begin designing building systems based on standard abstract models, and as these systems are described by energy models, we create the abstract interfaces for agile interoperation and cooperation of systems. This approach is required for such initiatives as the Zero Energy Building and GridWise energy distribution. If you want to read about them , well, read the rest of this blog….

Article originally appeared on New Daedalus (http://www.newdaedalus.com/).
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