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Subject: Enterprise Control Data as part of Life-Cycle Automation

Written for an another area:


Not exactly formulated as a use case, but describes one type of process I would like to use an oBIX for.




Three major activities affect to the long term operating costs of the building. These are (1) a complete building inventory, delivered from the design and construction process, (2) systems modeling, the outcome of design and a requirement to produce a green building, and ongoing operations data.  If the taxonomies surrounding these activities can be unified, it will greatly simplify managing the entire building lifecycle


With the GSA mandate that AECXML be used for all submittals starting in FY2006, the way is clear to receive a complete inventory of building systems and equipment electronically. At each stage of the design process, we should receive in machine-readable format the design goals and the equipment inventory for the building.


The latest versions of the CAD systems in use by the vast majority of architects now support or will soon support modeling of building systems as well as generating GBXML directly from those modeled drawings.  As we align these taxa (AECXML and GBXML),  we should be able to verify several key points:


  1. Design goals captured in early submittals can be compared to the behaviors modeled during the Green Building process.
  2. Modeled behaviors exist for all systems of interest inventoried in the design submittals
  3. All systems modeled actually end up in the construction documents


The first step upon completion of a building should be a complete testing and verification that the components of the building are in place and that they operate as designed.  This process, known as commissioning, is the only way to know that the building you have bought is the building you wanted.  Traditionally, commissioning has suffered from commissioning agents receiving incomplete information as to what to commission as well as lacking tools to adequate verify that the behavior of installed systems meet the initial design goals of the project.


The first of these problems is solved by the requirement of AECXML submittals for all work during design and construction.  These submittals provide a complete and machine-readable inventory of all aspects of the building, including those requiring commissioning.  Future versions of AECXML should be tuned to enhanced to optimize this function


With a new meta-taxon above the nitty-gritty of the controls and oriented towards performance, it would be possible to verify that the operations of the building systems meet the goals (1) as stated in the design submittals and (2)  as modeled during the green building process.  It is a design goal of oBIX to support this functionality, that is to be able to verify system performance out of operating data.


Improved verifiable timely commissioning within harmonized taxa for Design & Construction, for System Modeling, and for System Operation will enable feedback to the A&E community to improve the design process.  It will also aid the construction community by providing a means or rapid acceptance of buildings, and therefore of rapid payment for buildings.


An ongoing benefit of this model is that the operating data provided once for performance analysis during commissioning continues to be available every day.  As these processes become more automated, they become the basis for continuous commissioning, wherein the performance of building subsystems can be verified every day.

1.      Systems can be repaired when they begin to drift out of control, not when they fail. Such repairs would be when convenient and during scheduled outages. This will improve tenant satisfaction while forfending expensive emergency repairs and overtime.

2.      R&R Models can be developed based upon peak performance rather than upon impending failure.

3.      It will be possible to build defensible definitions of LEEDs compliance for existing buildings.



Toby Considine      ! "Do the right thing. It will
UNC Chapel Hill     ! gratify some people and
Chapel Hill, NC     ! astonish the rest."
Phone (919)962-9073 !
Fax (919)962-1102   !            --Mark Twain
tobias@fac.unc.edu  !


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