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Open BIM

CADS Revit Link

Structural Engineers typically create their project models via the exchange of 2D drawings with the architect. The Engineer will then create multiple analytical models and design documentation that is sent back and forth to the Architect constantly requiring manual updating as the project progresses to delivery. Building Information Modelling (BIM) enables this process to be automated.

CADS Revit Link is a bespoke add-on to Autodesk Revit that streamlines this workflow enabling structural engineers to save valuable design and drafting time by improving the co-ordination of structural design documentation with other project parties.

This tool plays a key role with projects adopting the BIM process benefiting the user by minimising errors and improving collaboration between engineering, architectural and fabrication teams.

In utilising SCIA Engineer as the design partner to Revit, the structural model can contain complex geometry and a range of materials in a single model such as concrete, steel, composite beams and timber.

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Revit linked BIM model

SCIA Engineer Revit Link and the BIM process

Structures developed in Revit can be sent via the Revit® Link to SCIA Engineer design software whereupon it can be fully optimised.

The changes to the geometry (slab thicknesses, section sizes, addition/removal of members), can then be sent back to Revit which automatically updates the original model and hence the 2D drawings it produces.

Alternatively, the model can be produced and designed in SCIA Engineer and sent to Revit for drawing production, i.e. bi-directional. Full tracking of changes can be monitored in either Revit or SCIA Engineer.

Items that can be exchanged include:

  • Material types
  • Geometry: straight or curved beams and columns, complex slabs or walls with openings and foundations
  • Member end restraints
  • Analytical support types: pinned, fixed etc.
  • Loads and combinations
  • Analytical results: SCIA Engineer results can be exported to Revit.

Open BIM process (IFC file exchange)

CADS also supports links to other 3D modelling software such as Allplan, Tekla, ArchiCAD and Vectorworks using the vendor neutral format IFC as part of the Open BIM Process. SCIA Engineer also integrates with the BIM Plus platform so that models can be shared with architects. The platform is totally free and can allow the engineer to take the lead on model co-ordination at no extra cost for the software but with increased fees. It is also possible to link with CADS’ industry-leading detailing software CADS RC.

Why is Open BIM important?

  1. Open BIM supports a transparent, open workflow, allowing project members to participate regardless of the software tools they use.
  2. Open BIM creates a common language for widely referenced processes, allowing industry and government to procure projects with transparent commercial engagement, comparable service evaluation and assured data quality.
  3. Open BIM provides enduring project data for use throughout the asset life cycle, avoiding multiple input of the same data and consequential errors.
  4. Small and large (platform) software vendors can participate and compete on system independent, ‘best of breed’ solutions.
  5. Open BIM energises the online product supply side with more exact user demand searches and delivers the product data directly into the BIM.
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