Integrated Construction Environment
|Corresponding Author: Sun, Ming|
|Author(s): Sun, M.|
|Organisation(s): Built and Human Environment Research Centre, University of Salford (UK)|
|The development of integrated construction environment aims at facilitating
data integration between multiple AEC software applications, thus enabling
information sharing between different professionals during the construction
process. In recent years, there has been a series of UK and EU funded research
initiatives addressing the integration issue. Two central aspects of an
integrated construction system are:
1 An underlying common data model that makes the data integration between applications possible;
2 Adequate system control mechanism that makes the integration operating efficiently and correctly.
There has been a consensus in the AEC industry on the model-based integration approach between multiple software applications. A number of data models have been developed, for example the RATAS model, the Building Core Model, the Integrated Data Model of COMBINE project, the Integrated Product Model of COMBI, the Logical Product Model for CIMSteel, and the on-going IAIís Industry Foundation Classes. As a result of these efforts, it is reasonable to expect that a stable building data model will emerge in the near future.
These is however no such a consensus on the control mechanism needed in an integrated system. A variety of approaches have been adopted by several on-going and recently completed research projects in Europe. Furthermore, the technology in this respect is not mature, and most prototype systems developed in these projects are only fit for demonstration purposes. They are not sufficiently robust for testing by construction professionals in real projects.
This paper intends to review and evaluate these different approaches
of information sharing control. It will present a snapshot of state of
art in system integration control mechanism. The criteria of the review
The integration approaches of the identified systems will be compared and they will also be measured against the requirements of an integrated construction system that is able to support full concurrent engineering by multiple disciplines.