Data types and usage

Types of Data

Where possible, we should create data once, and use it many times. This reduces waste and complexity.

If we have an object, perhaps a door, we create a single database object of that door, connect to it all of the different properties or documents required for different purposes, and filter the selected information that is required by each different stakeholder.
Some of this information will be “fixed” and some variations of “variable”.

Types of asset data

  1. Fixed data
  2. Variable but common data (e.g. reusable libraries for installation/inspection procedures)
  3. Variable but unique data (serial numbers, commissioning settings - and documents, commissioning certificates, photos)
  4.  Geometric files – need federating and perhaps translating via ifc.
  5. Documents – certificates, data sheets, photos.
  6. Evergreen asset data – constantly refreshed.

Fixed information – doesn’t change project by project – e.g. manufacturers product information. Adding fixed data into BIM models is unnecessary, introduces complexity and risk of data loss.

Variable information – project-specific – can be added into models, depending on workflow

Where is the variable data created?

Installers - database applications and spreadsheets (seldom BIM)

Designers – specification and design applications – and BIM

Fixed Data

For “fixed” data, in most cases, having the right data sheet, for the right product, is adequate – and as long as it is properly referenced, using categories and meta data, it can be automatically connected. The meta data can be defined in Templater, so the classification, and the key searchable data/properties that are agreed by experts and defined in Templater, can be added to the document.

The metadata can include “tags” that automatically connect the documents to “variable” data – perhaps elements in the models and related data – such as task lists and photos.

This is a quick win because the BIM model is automatically connected to the documents in the O&M/H&S file, where it has been compiled as a separate commission.

Variable Data

Installers will author what is “variable” data in databases or Excel e.g. record which actual model and serial number of a pump was installed, alone with a photo. The commissioning engineer, the settings based on the performance curve of that pump in that system. The values will be impacted by other elements, for example the electric motor powering the pump. This detailed information will be required by the maintenance team, to ensure the system will continue to perform as designed and commissioned.