Automatic generation of second level space boundary geometry from IFC models
Eric Fichter, Veronika Richter, J´erˆome Frisch, Christoph van Treeck
Institute of Energy Eﬃciency and Sustainable Building (E3D),
RWTH Aachen University, Germany
Building Information Modeling aims at the use of dig-
ital building data in all planning processes. However,
several challenges arise when using BIM data in the
IFC ﬁle format to create building simulation mod-
els. Complex, detailed or erroneous data and the lack
of software interfaces complicate and delay the sim-
ulation preprocessing. One way to reduce the sim-
ulation expert’s eﬀort is to provide space boundary
data, which can be applied in both CFD and BEPS.
This paper presents an algorithm for the generation
of space boundaries based on the IFC data model.
The focus is on model error resistance and simultane-
ous support of CFD and BEPS to accelerate simula-
tion preprocessing, avoid redundant geometric model
setup, and simplify the simulation result exchange.
•Introduction of an automated preprocessing algo-
rithm generating space boundaries
•Application in the setup of simulation models for
CFD and BEPS
•Reduction of the required preparation time of a
simulation model and removal of modeling errors
This paper introduces an algorithm for space bound-
ary generation based on IFC building models. The
proposed method simpliﬁes and accelerates the appli-
cation of IFC data in numerical building simulation
Building Information Modeling (BIM) refers to a co-
operative working methodology based on digital data
that contains all information relevant to a building’s
life cycle. An essential component of BIM is the 3D
building model, which is continuously enriched with
additional or updated information as the planning
process progresses. Typical planning information in-
cludes geometries and properties of architectural and
technical building components as well as time, cost,
and maintenance planning data. To enable the ex-
change of building data among project participants,
the international organization buildingSMART has
developed the open data model Industry Foundation
Classes (IFC) (ISO 16739-1:2018).
In numerical building simulations, the use of existing
digital data can contribute to improved and simpli-
ﬁed processes. For example, time-consuming geomet-
ric remodeling could be avoided. However, since the
data is usually not designed and exported simulation-
speciﬁc, extensive preparation steps may have to be
carried out to eliminate modeling and export er-
rors. To automate the model preparation, various
programs have been developed in academic research.
Some of them are out-dated or no longer accessible.
The algorithm presented in this paper is part of a
toolchain, which aims to provide the basic methods to
derive simulation models from digital building data.
Therefore, the proposed algorithm generates Space
Boundaries (SBs) based on IFC ﬁles for the applica-
tion in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and
Building Energy Performance Simulation (BEPS).
The paper ﬁrst gives a brief overview of SBs, their
generation, and challenges in simulation applications.
Subsequently, the requirements for the simulation
and the SB generation algorithm are explained. Fi-
nally, the results are shown and applied in simulations
using an academic IFC example model.
Space Boundary Deﬁnition
SBs are the boundary surfaces of spaces and the in-
terfaces of building elements in contact with air. In
building-related CFD, SBs are usually required to in-
vestigate the air volume for temperatures, ﬂow veloc-
ities, and gas concentrations by imposing boundary
conditions on them. In BEPS, SBs are the heat trans-
fer surfaces between zones of diﬀerent temperatures.
A distinction is made between ﬁrst level and second
level SBs, see ﬁgure 1. At the ﬁrst level, SBs are
pure space delimiters. At the second level, SBs take
changes in building elements or spaces on the other
side into account, which makes them well suited for
the application in BEPS. Regardless of the level, SBs
cannot be explicitly extracted from a purely geomet-
ric IFC model.
Within the IFC standard in version 4.1, published by
buildingSMART in 2018, SBs are represented by the
class IfcRelSpaceBoundary. In addition to the geo-
metric representation and the assignment to a space
and a building element, SBs can be characterized by
their boundary type. For instance, second level SBs
can be internal or external, physical or virtual, and
of type 2a or 2b. While 2a SBs allow heat exchange
between two spaces, 2b SBs are in front of a heat
blocking building element (ﬁgure 1).
Spaces separated by walls First level
Second level, type 2a Second level, type 2b
Figure 1: Distinction between ﬁrst and second level
SBs (based on buildingSMART (2018)).
State of the art
Challenges using IFC data
According to the authors’ research, the use of 3D
geometries from IFC ﬁles in CFD has only re-
cently been applied in industry. Among other rea-
sons, that is because IFC ﬁles are not provided
and software to handle them is unknown or un-
available. Meanwhile, an increasing number of soft-
ware providers are creating IFC import interfaces in
their tools. These include, for example, the com-
mercial programs BIMHVACTool, a graphical pre-
processor for OpenFOAM (Weller et al., 1998), and
BIM inside ANSYS, an interface for the ANSYS sim-
ulation environment. Besides, there are free and par-
tially web-based services for converting IFC geome-
tries into various geometry data formats such as Stan-
dard Triangle Language (STL) and Wavefront OBJ,
for example IfcConvert and BIMvision.
The use of IFC ﬁles can be challenging with or with-
out commercial software, especially for huge models
with unnecessary objects, corrupted geometries, and
a high level of detail. Also, modeling issues and ex-
port errors such as overlapping objects or gaps be-
tween objects can cause diﬃculty. Moreover, when
converting the IFC into a geometry format, BIM
data such as object attributes, inheritance informa-
tion, and relations of objects to other entities is lost.
Hence, the motivation of the proposed algorithm is to
automate parts of the preprocessing steps that have
to be conducted for CFD mesh creation.
Multiple BEPS tools provide an interface to IFC.
Nevertheless, according to the buildingSMART Inter-
national Standards Implementation Database (2020),
the majority of them only supports the prior version
IFC2x3. This concerns, for example, the commer-
cial tools Simergy (2020) and IDA ICE as well as
the BimServer plugin OsmSerializer (2016) used in
the open source software OpenStudio (2020). The
EnergyPlus supporting middleware SimModel inte-
grated into Simergy (O’Donnell et al., 2011; Nytsch-
Geusen et al., 2019) and the toolchain BIM2Modelica
(Nytsch-Geusen et al., 2019) are restricted to IFC2x3,
too. According to Mediavilla et al. (2018), the Reno-
BIM software, a preprocessor for EnergyPlus devel-
oped within the BERTIM (2019) project, is capa-
ble of reading IFC4 data. The toolchain suggested
by the BIM2SIM project supports EnergyPlus sim-
ulation based on IFC4 ﬁles. For this software, the
availability of SBs is crucial as their representation
is used as geometry input for the Building Energy
Model (BEM). In the workﬂow proposed by Andria-
mamonjy et al. (2018), SBs must be deﬁned as well.
Despite SBs are deﬁned within the IFC standard,
several geometric and non-geometric issues can arise
when using SBs from IFC ﬁles in BEPS. Issues can be
caused by incorrect export settings, insuﬃcient IFC
support in the authoring tool, and modeling that was
not adapted for BEPS. Typical geometric errors are
missing, duplicate, deformed, incorrectly oriented, or
overlapping SBs, that are not enclosing a space cor-
rectly. Also, SBs with missing or wrong semantic
information, e. g. concerning boundary types and re-
lated elements, can occur. A detailed description of
occurring issues was given by Maile et al. (2013).
Because of the potential errors mentioned, an IFC
model check with a focus on SBs should be performed
beforehand. However, there are only a few tools sup-
porting this. Visual veriﬁcation can be performed in
IFC viewers. Also, syntactic correctness in compar-
ison with the IFC standard can be checked. Tools
that support such rule checking are the IfcCheck-
ingTool (2020), the Solibri Model Checker and Ifc-
Doc. The latter can also be used to implement SB-
speciﬁc custom rules, as Wimmer et al. (2017), Pin-
heiro et al. (2018) and Ying and Lee (2017) proposed.
Unfortunately, there is no comprehensive software for
checking geometric and complex BEPS-speciﬁc rules.
Though, Ying and Lee (2020) introduced a tool, de-
tecting geometric errors with a focus on watertight
geometry using a Monte Carlo ray tracing approach.
From the challenges described in this section, a need
for algorithms and tools generating correct SBs can
Space boundary generation
SBs can be written to IFC at two diﬀerent stages
in BIM. A generation can be done within the CAD
software during the export of the IFC ﬁle, which is
shared with the simulation expert. This would be
the preferred way since all information of the para-
metric modeled BIM objects and their relationships
among each other remains available. However, the
IFC export interfaces of the CAD tools may be un-
reliable. In such a case, the SB generation needs to
be based on the geometric IFC data. Due to the
IFC schema deﬁnition and the export of the CAD
software, information on the relationships between
the objects is largely lost. Hence, it must be algo-
rithmically regenerated. Another challenge for the
downstream generation of the SBs is the quality of
the IFC data, which is inﬂuenced by errors and the
level of geometry. Several algorithms to generate
SBs based on three-dimensional architectural build-
ing models were presented in academic research (van
Treeck and Rank, 2007; Rose and Bazjanac, 2013;
Jones et al., 2013; Ladenhauf et al., 2016; Lilis et al.,
2016; Nytsch-Geusen et al., 2019). They are summa-
rized in table 1 listing important prerequisites and
methods. Most of the implementations that arose
from the algorithms are not actively supported any-
more, are based on prior IFC versions, or are not
Typically, SB generation is done in three main steps.
In the ﬁrst step, the fulﬁllment of the semantical and
geometric prerequisites of the algorithm must be en-
sured by preprocessing. Especially to reduce clashes
between objects beforehand, Boolean operations have
to be used. This is for example demonstrated in Lilis
et al. (2015), proposing methods to ensure the needs
of their CBIP algorithm (Lilis et al., 2016). Impor-
tant requirements of the algorithms mentioned above
are summarized in table 1.
In the second step, ﬁrst level SB geometry is gen-
erated. For this, some approaches rely on the pres-
ence of IfcSpace geometry. If IfcSpaces are used, ﬁrst
level SBs are generated by intersecting the faces of
spaces and building elements by Boolean operation,
which requires a correct and consistent model without
gaps and intersections. Algorithms that do not rely
on IfcSpaces must extract faces in contact with air
by other approaches. Van Treeck and Rank (2007)
create an edge-face graph of the building by mutu-
ally intersecting solid objects using Boolean opera-
tions. Evaluating the graph’s adjacency information
allows detecting ﬁrst level SBs and ensures watertight
spaces. Jones et al. (2013) identify spaces by ana-
lyzing view factors between polygons calculated by
Second level SB geometry is generated in the third
step. Except for van Treeck and Rank (2007), the
mentioned algorithms use a projection approach. In
this, polygon pairs are determined according to var-
ious criteria such as parallelism, distance, and the
presence of reverse-oriented surface normals. SBs are
then created by mutual projecting and clipping the
paired faces. In the approach of van Treeck and Rank
(2007), imprints on faces created by extruded solids
describe a subset of second level SBs.
A combination and adaptation of the presented ap-
proaches has the potential to make the SB genera-
tion more error resistant and to fulﬁll the semantic
and geometric requirements of CFD and BEPS. This
can lead to acceleration of simulation preprocessing,
avoidance of redundant geometric model setups and
simpliﬁcation of the exchange of simulation results.
For a CFD simulation of a zone based on STL input
ﬁles, a manifold watertight triangular surface mesh
is needed, which contains only objects relevant to set
boundary conditions. To simplify the meshing pro-
cess, the faces should be consistent and correctly ori-
ented, and triangulated in a way that a vertex is con-
nected to three edges. Inner, double, and overlapping
coplanar surfaces, as well as surface intersections, are
not allowed. The above requirements can be satis-
ﬁed by the proposed algorithm. However, remeshing
of the geometry must be done in separate meshing
software, for example, to eliminate faces with high
perimeter to area ratio or faces with very acute an-
gles. Also, a collision of one or more correct geome-
tries in a vertex or edge can cause problems when
generating a surface mesh, even though it is geometri-
cally valid. Such cases must be solved either manually
or by a wrapping algorithm in the meshing software.
For BEPS, the requirements of the IFC standard must
be met in particular. Additional requirements must
also be fulﬁlled:
•SBs form a closed shell around the space
•SB normals pointing outward of the space
•Spaces and SBs shall not intersect each other
•Simplifying container elements (IfcCurtainWall)
•Link to IfcExternalSpatialElement for facade SBs
•The SBs of a void ﬁlling object are coplanar to the
SBs of the parent element
The proposed algorithm aims at generating SBs that
meet both, the stated requirements for CFD and for
surface-based IFC SBs. To be independent of data
and model correctness, IfcSpace geometry should not
be used for ﬁrst level SB generation. For this rea-
son and to generate watertight adjacent ﬁrst level
SBs, the approach of van Treeck and Rank (2007) is
suitable. However, it is adapted to a purely surface-
based approach. Thus, no closed BREP solids with
correct normals are assumed, which are necessary in
Table 1: Space boundary generation algorithms. References to columns from left to right: van Treeck and Rank
(2007), Jones et al. (2013), Rose and Bazjanac (2013), Ladenhauf et al. (2016), Lilis et al. (2016)
Tre07 Jon13 Ros13 Lad16 Lil16 Proposed
Prerequisites for algorithm
IfcSpaces for 1st level SBs × × ×
Absence of clashes/gaps between space and construction × × ×
Absence of clashes/gaps between constructions × × ×
Watertight solid BREPs × × (×)×
Correct surface normals × × × ×
Geometric representation solid polygon polygon polygon polygon all faces
Method for 1st level SB generation
Clipping of space and construction faces × × ×
Detection by view factors ×
Evaluating edge-face graph created by Bool. operation × ×
Method for 2nd level SB generation
Projection and clipping of faces × × × × ×
Extension of solids/faces before 1st level SB generation × ×
Could generate geometry and properties of IFC4 SBs × × × × ×
other algorithms, for example, to eliminate collisions
between components. Furthermore, virtual faces or
incorrectly modeled objects, e. g. unrealistically thin
objects, can be handled. Based on the extracted
ﬁrst level SBs, projection and clipping allow the gen-
eration of all second level subdivisions required by
IFC. Ray tracing operations ensure the distinction of
type 2a and 2b faces and recognition of correspond-
ing faces, to address changes in material, building el-
ement or space. The algorithm involves several steps:
1) Parsing IFC data and conversion to BREP
2) Geometric healing (partially optional)
3) Geometric simpliﬁcation (partially optional)
4) Creation of face-only data structure
5) Oﬀsetting faces
6) Creation of edge-face graph by Boolean operation
7) Traversing graph to identify e. g. ﬁrst level SBs
8) Export for CFD as STL (optional)
9) Projection and clipping of faces
10) Identiﬁcation of SB properties by ray tracing
11) Merging of SBs with same properties
12) Export for BEPS as IFC
The algorithm is currently being implemented in C++.
The IFC data is parsed and geometrically interpreted
using IfcOpenShell (2020), a software library support-
ing IFC’s geometric resources. It is based on the open
source 3D modeling kernel Open Cascade Technology
(OCCT, 2020), which is later used for the geomet-
ric operations of the presented algorithm. Using Ifc-
OpenShell, OCCT shapes are created for the three-
dimensional building elements of relevant IFC classes.
The shape geometry is stored as BREP, with no re-
strictions on the curvature of edges and faces.
Especially for complex objects with high levels of de-
tail, the shapes can be faulty. The reason for this
is usually an incorrect geometric description in the
IFC ﬁle. A common problem is the presence of non-
closed shells and inner, overlapping, or wrongly ori-
ented faces. As long as the gaps in the hull of the
shape do not exceed a critical value (a few centime-
ters), this kind of geometry does not aﬀect the algo-
rithm. Yet, to speed up later processes, an attempt
is made to heal faulty shapes. For this, smaller gaps
are ﬁrst closed by face extension. Then, the envelop-
ing surface of the shape is extracted according to the
geometric analysis proposed by van Treeck and Rank
(2007), ensuring a consistent face orientation. If pos-
sible, coplanar adjacent surfaces are uniﬁed.
The result of a healing process is exempliﬁed in ﬁg-
ure 2. The staircase is taken from the IFC build-
ing presented later (ﬁgure 5). It consists of a set
of faces that form partially closed and partially non-
closed volumes. Moreover, the staircase has inner and
wrongly oriented faces as well as faces that are unnec-
essarily triangulated. As ﬁgure 2 (b) shows, the errors
can be eliminated by the integrated healing process.
(a) before (b) after
Figure 2: Healing of an IfcStair’s geometry. Inner
surfaces are colored red, faces with incor-
rect normals (arrows) are shown in blue.
Window and door objects are often described geo-
metrically detailed, which is not practical for sim-
ulation. Therefore, the geometry of associated
IfcOpeningElements is used instead. Because of the
face-based approach, geometric correctness of a wall
is irrelevant, as long as the usually simple opening
element is correct. Thus, an opening can be ex-
pressed as two faces lying on two wall faces, reducing
the geometric complexity. Assemblies of components,
such as IfcCurtainWalls, are simpliﬁed by rectangu-
lar enveloping surfaces as required by BEPS. Figure 3
shows some simpliﬁcations and indicates that holes
can be closed within the process, too.
(a) before (b) after
Figure 3: Geometric simpliﬁcation of windows and a
Regardless of healing and simpliﬁcation, all surfaces
are collected from the BREPs. Subsequently, the
faces are oﬀset by a few centimeters to ﬁll gaps within
and between components. Boolean intersection of the
faces and adjacency evaluation results in an edge-face
graph of the building, in which faces are connected
to other faces via edge pairs. Faces with unconnected
edges are removed. The orientation of a face’s surface
normal is not important for the subsequent processes.
However, if the faces were part of a healed shape, the
correct orientation is known.
To ﬁnd ﬁrst level SBs and to detect inner faces, the
graph is traversed starting from a randomly selected
face, collecting neighbor faces recursively. If the cor-
rect face normal of the neighbor face is known but not
compatible, the search is interrupted and restarted
with another initial face or another face orientation.
If it is unknown, the orientation of the face is adjusted
to be compatible. If a surface has several neighbors
at one edge, the surface with the smaller angle is se-
lected. The search ends with a closed space if no
more new faces are found. Checks follow to verify
the correctness of the found space. Spaces must not
overlap, the surface normals must point into the en-
closed volume, and component surfaces may only be
used once. For CFD-based applications, the clustered
faces are forwarded to the triangulation and export
process along with information about a SB’s related
space and building element.
To achieve a geometric second level subdivision, faces
that do not exceed a maximum distance, are mutu-
ally projected and clipped. The maximum distance is
a user-deﬁned value, which is also used to distinguish
the boundary types (2a or 2b). For BEPS, attributes
like boundary type, corresponding face, or material
composition between the face pair need to be as-
signed. This is done based on a face-line-intersection
(ray tracing) as depicted in ﬁgure 4. Here, lines are
generated based on SB surface normals and examined
for contact with other faces. The ﬁrst level SB that
is hit ﬁrst, represents the corresponding SB. If no SB
is hit within the maximum distance, a 2b boundary
type is assigned. Changes in the material are derived
from the order in which the faces are hit. Finally,
SBs are merged with their neighbors if they share all
Figure 4: Face-line-intersection between two 2a SBs
(red) seen from above. There are four in-
tersection points: wall face (1), column
face (2), wall and column face (3, 4).
As described in the requirements, a triangulated mesh
should be created that just needs to be stitched before
the surface meshing can be performed. During stitch-
ing, adjacent triangles are topologically connected via
geometrically identical edges. Nonetheless, surface
wrapping of the geometry is required, if additional
objects are added after the export. The geometry
is exported as a single STL ﬁle. The ﬁle contains
STL solids, which are composed of faces belonging to
the same space and the same building element. This
approach maintains control over all objects. Thus,
individual faces, objects, IFC classes, and spaces can
be ﬁltered via regular expressions e. g. in the CFD
software. The algorithm ensures consistent triangula-
tion, but mesh quality criteria such as skewness (ratio
of internal angles against optimal angle) and aspect
ratios cannot be inﬂuenced. This is an acceptable
procedure since geometry is remeshed anyway when
creating surface meshes suitable for CFD purposes.
To export the created objects into the IFC data for-
mat, instances of the classes IfcRelSpaceBoundary,
IfcSpace and IfcExternalSpatialElement are gener-
ated ﬁrst. In addition to the geometric representa-
tion, attributes such as name, description, and the
globally unique identiﬁer are then assigned to the en-
tities. For this purpose, a conversion of the geomet-
ric classes of OCCT into IFC-based instances is per-
formed using IfcOpenShell. Finally, the entities are
linked together to describe the related objects.
For this paper, the IFC4 Phantasy oﬃce building of
the Institute for Automation and Applied Informatics
(IAI) of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT)
is processed (ﬁgure 5). It was chosen because of its
good representability and the presence of SBs, which
are used for validation of the proposed algorithm.
Figure 5: The example IFC building.
Figure 6 (a) shows a clipped visualization of the re-
sulting STL ﬁle. It can be seen that the assignment to
the IFC products is preserved despite tessellation and
a consistent triangulation exists. However, the trian-
gulation is not optimized for angles or other mesh
parameters, which is up to the meshing tool. Fig-
ure 6 (b) depicts the staircase zone selected by text
ﬁltering based on the naming convention.
(a) clip (b) staircase zone
Figure 6: Filtered STL result ﬁle.
The enriched and exported IFC ﬁle contains an
IfcExternalSpatialElement, 78 IfcSpaces and almost
2000 IfcRelSpaceBoundaries. The added entities
are visualized in ﬁgure 8. While subﬁgure (c)
shows the external SBs belonging to IfcSpaces,
the subﬁgures (d) and (e) depict the SBs of the
IfcExternalSpatialElement. The typing of the SBs in
contact with the ground is not yet complete, since the
IfcSite is not yet considered by the algorithm. Unlike
the original oﬃce model, the enriched model provides
SBs of type 2b, creating watertight spaces.
In this section, the generated STL and IFC ﬁles will
be applied to the simulation process.
The application of the STL ﬁle is shown by means of
a steady-state airﬂow simulation in the staircase, in-
vestigating a smoke protection pressure system. The
simulation is performed for summer conditions with
closed doors. For this purpose, the STL ﬁle to be sim-
ulated was imported into Fluent Meshing. By naming
the surfaces according to zone, IFC class, and related
building element, it was possible to delete all building
areas except the staircase and to impose the bound-
ary conditions on the desired surfaces in an easy and
straight forward manner.
Due to the appropriate preparation, wrapping was
not necessary. Instead, stitching was performed,
which was based solely on vertex merging. Figure 7
(a) shows the used surface mesh. For volume mesh-
ing, the unstructured triangular surface mesh was
converted to a hexagonal mesh consisting of 2.8 mil-
lion cells. The simulation was performed in Fluent
using the SST k-ωturbulence model. As one of three
ﬂow variables, the resulting air pressure is shown in
ﬁgure 7 (b).
(a) Surface mesh (b) Relative pressure in Pa
Figure 7: Indoor air ﬂow simulation of a stairway us-
ing the exported STL geometry.
BEPS using EnergyPlus
The simulation of the oﬃce model enriched with the
SBs was performed in EnergyPlus. The needed Ener-
gyPlus Input Data File (IDF) was generated using the
BIM2SIM Python toolchain. This toolchain is based
on IfcOpenShell and GeomEppy (2016) to convert the
SBs objects to IDF surface geometries. According to
the IFC ﬁle, the IDF surfaces were positioned on the
building component surfaces, to correctly represent
the thermal mass of the building. SBs of type 2b
were used to close the spaces and set to be thermally
adiabatic. Each IfcSpace was transferred as a sin-
gle zone and all non-geometric simulation parameters
such as heating and cooling set points, loads, sched-
ules, construction, and materials were chosen accord-
ing to standardized templates.
Before importing the IFC ﬁle into the BIM2SIM
toolchain, it was checked for syntactic errors using
the IfcCheckingTool and a Python script inspecting
the corresponding rules proposed by Ying and Lee
(2017). Both inspections reported no issues. Addi-
tionally, a visual inspection of the generated IDF in
OpenStudio was carried out, examining interior 2a SB
(a) Internal, 2a (b) Internal, 2b (c) External related to IfcSpaces
(d) External Earth (e) External (f) IfcSpaces
Figure 8: Generated space boundaries highlighted by type.
pairings, surface normals, EnergyPlus boundary con-
ditions, thermal zones and constructions. As shown
in ﬁgure 9, the geometry is well-deﬁned and all zones
appear to be watertight. According to the Energy-
Plus error log, no errors attributable to the enriched
SBs were reported during the simulation.
Figure 9: Visualization of the generated IDF based on
the enriched IFC.
The positions and areas of the SBs were compared
with the SBs of the original oﬃce model. The quan-
titative evaluation showed agreement in the number
and position of all zones except the stairwell. This
is due to the diﬀerent zoning, as there are no virtual
SBs in the proposed IFC ﬁle.
This paper presented an algorithm for generating
ﬁrst and second level space boundaries based on IFC
data. The need for this tool was identiﬁed during
research work and cooperations with industrial part-
ners. Based on two application examples, the func-
tionality of the algorithm and the correctness of the
generated data were successfully demonstrated. A
signiﬁcant simpliﬁcation and acceleration could be
observed in the creation of simulation models. The
obtained results are a good basis for further improve-
ments of the tool. Future developments may include
the support of virtual space boundaries, the increase
of the overall robustness, and the subdivision of faces
in contact with the site. This tool contributes to an
improved BIM work process for building simulations.
This includes investigations in which a BEPS as well
as a CFD simulation must be performed. By support-
ing both simulation geometries, model setup can be
simpliﬁed and boundary conditions can be exchanged
more easily between the simulations.
The authors gratefully acknowledge the ﬁnancial
support of the German Federal Ministry for Eco-
nomic Aﬀairs and Energy of Germany in the project
“BIM2SIM - Development of methods for the genera-
tion of simulation models using Building Information
Modeling data” (project number 03ET1562A).
The authors also thank the experts of the work pack-
age Building Information Modeling of the IBPSA
Project 1 for the detailed and helpful discussions.
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