I have received this question from my customer and because my knowledge of AECOsim Building Designer, especially CONNECT Edition, and also IFC format are limited, I am looking for existing experience and best practices:
Is it possible, when a model is exported to IFC format, to include also Item Types?
There is a model that was created partially in MicroStation (both V8i and CONNECT Edition) and these elements have data attached as Item Types. These elements (often plain cells, old Smart Solids but also new Parametric solids) are not recognized as ABD elements. Another part of this project was created directly in ABD and now the whole 3D model should be exported to IFC.
When I tried to export it in ABD CE U2, not ABD elements are exported as geometries, but Item Types data seem to be lost. Is it possible to export Item Types also or it's not supported (yet)? Or is there any requirement / preparation steps that have to be done like the element have to exist in ABD catalog or there is some special IFC export configuration / mapping?
Elements need to have Part/Family Data attached so that it can be mapped properly with IFC Item types.
thanks a lot for your fast answer :-)
It makes sense, but at the same time it creates another issue: Because there are plenty of such MicroStation-only elements, I am not quite sure whether it's feasible to make such change manually.
Is it possible (using ABD tools) and make it sense (from ABD Part/Family data concept and also IFC format) to attach all such elements at once to some "unspoecified other part/family" just to ensure Item Types will be processed? Right now geometry only is exported for these geometries and in this project state they are mostly "information level objects", so detail classification through part/family is not necessary.
Labyrinth Technology | dev.notes() | cad.point
The two ABD data types that support IFC export are Family + Part (as Tathagata mentioned) and DataGroup instance data, with the latter used as the primary mapping format. For example, this screen capture shows delivered Wall catalog types being mapped to the IFC "IfcStandardCase" Class/Type, as well as specific DataGroup wall properties mapped to IFC properties:
However, if you don't need those properties you could assign a (or any) DataGroup catalog type to those elements so that they come across. This Wiki describes the basic process to do this: https://communities.bentley.com/products/building/building_analysis___design/w/building_analysis_and_design__wiki/28349/add-instance-data-to-a-graphic-element
More information about IFC export + DataGroup data is available in the Help file located here:
And Family + Part data here:
Hope all is well
Are there any plans to incorporate Items into the IFC export? Items are seemingly now the primary form of adding properties to MicroStation-speciifc applications and not being able to get that information over to a platform neutral ISO-standard file format (ie IFC) is becoming a crucial issue. It's simply not possible to post-process hundreds of files with potentially thousands of properties into DataGroups for conversion.
If there's a better way of achieving this, I'd welcome the input.
Thanks a lot, that was something I was looking for.
So actually it isn't necessary to model 3D objects, it also works with 2D elements, and they can be exported to ifc.
To the best of my knowledge, no, there are no current plans to incorporate Item Types into IFC export. If a base element level is sufficient you could always use Apply Part instead (mentioned above). That would result in a valid IFC file, though of course without the granularity that the DataGroup System provides (which is why it's the default mapping mechanism).
Since IFC is essentially a BIM based format I'm curious how other disciplines would use the format, and which IFC Entity types would be included.