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buildingSMART alliance Precast Concrete Project

Precast Concrete

ORGANIZATION: This project is sponsored by the Charles Pankow Foundation and Precast/Prestressed Concrete Industry and undertaken in collaboration with National Institute of Building Sciences, buildingSMART Alliance, Georgia Institute of Technology, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and Digital Alchemy.

Charles Eastman
(404) 894-3477

A committee of the Precast / Prestressed Concrete Institute and advised by Georgia Tech are developing a national BIM standard to support the critical information exchanges surrounding precast concrete. The precast pieces include stemmed deck members, flat deck members, beams, columns, load bearing walls and spandrels, piles, and architectural facades, plus others.

Multiple business cases have been identified, addressing design-bid-build, design-build and precast as lead contractor modes of project delivery. The lifecycle phases include architectural design and construction modeling, structural engineering of precast, fabrication level detailing and manufacture planning, through to logistics and erection. These results are incorporated in a completed Information Delivery manual (IDM).

The Exchange Requirements have been defined to allow functional specification of the information needs for geometry, properties, level of detail, reinforcing and prestressing structural information and other semantic issues that define the needs of various exchanges.

Model View Definitions (MVDs) have been specified for the data exchanges defined in the IDM. This has led to the specification of about 130 specific bindings to the IFC (Industry Foundation Class) entities, grouped into small modules called Concepts. These bindings have been documented and posted on an open website for implementers, called IFC Solutions Factory, at Currently, tests files for testing the MVDs are being prepared, to test both import and export exchanges. The advisory team expects to work with relevant software companies and to outline a validation process for the resulting implementations.

A necessary component of this work is to identify and specify objects and relationships that are missing from the current IFC schema but are needed to cover all precast concrete objects and structures. These necessary IFC extensions have defined and adapted as needed for implementation in the upcoming 2.x4 IFC release, to be released this quarter. More information may be found at:


We have completed specification of the Model View Definitions (MVDs) necessary for implementation of the specified IDM functionality. We are using the MVD and Concept definition approach to modularize the exchange specification, to facilitate implementation and testing. Documentation of the MVD are complete. The definition of test files for implementers are now being prepared.


Second PCI BIM Advisory and Implementers Workshop: The second PCI BIM Advisory and Implementers Workshop was held June 22, 2009 in San Antonio, in conjunction with PCI Convention, at the San Antonio Convention Center. It provided a second review of the proposed precast BIM Standard Model View Definitions. Materials to be reviewed were distributed prior to the meeting. The materials reviewed included: the logic and purpose of the design phase, developing the Model View Definitions (MVD)s and implementation the Concept approach for modularizing the IFC translator implementation the precast structural model the reinforcing part of the specification, including rebar and tendons the connections and joints specification interfacing with structural modeling The phasing and full implementation detailing of the various parts were discussed, including: architectural precast finishes status, logistics, concrete mixes and other information. There was a long discussion of issues of Level of Detail. Attending were: Shiva Aram (Georgia Tech), Monte Chapin (Graphisoft), Chuck Eastman (Georgia Tech), Aaron Fink (Oldcastle), Jennifer Huber (Encon United), Wayne Kassian (Kassian Dyke), Mark Kraft (CEG Engineers), Mike LaNier, Berger/ABAM (chair), Jason Lien (Encon United), Charles Poole (Tekla), A.J. Scarfato (Metromont), Michael Slobojan (Structureworks), Frank Wang (Tekla), Dan van Wieren (Concrete Vision), Davis Chauviere (HKS).

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