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The eXtensible Building Information Modelling
The xBIM Tookit (eXtensible Building Information Modelling) is an open-source, software development BIM tool that supports the BuildingSmart Data Model (aka the Industry Foundation Classes IFC).
xBIM allows developers to read, create and view Building Information (BIM) Models in the IFC format. There is full support for geometric, topological operations and visualisation.
In other words, xBIM can be used to create bespoke BIM middleware
for IFC-based applications.
Why is it eXtensible?
xBIM is extensible because:
- It is open-source. The source codes are available for anybody who wants to participate in the project, to extend and add more functionality to the codes.
- It uses Extension Methods (a feature in C#, the programming language in which xBIM was written in). Extension Methods allow existing classes to be extended without relying on inheritance or having to change the class's source code. This
means that it is possible and easy to add new methods into an existing class.
What is the project written in?
There are 8 C# projects and 1 C++ project in the xBIM solution. xBIM is implemented on the .NET platform and is compatible with WPF and ASP.NET. The 3D modelling and visualisation is supported by the
Open CASCADE codes, and the parser uses the
Gardens Point Parser Generator.
What can xBIM do?
We have written the open-source xBIM Xplorer (Explorer) to demonstrate the capabilities of the extensible Building Information Modelling (xBIM) Toolkit. The xBIM Xplorer can be downloaded from the Source Code area of this website.
Currently, the xBIM Xplorer can allow users to:
- Open and view IFC files.
- Navigate through a model to see detailed information of the building such as thickness of roof, number of doors, etc.
- Show and hide parts of the building.
- View a model in 360° degrees.
- Export the IFC files as .ifcXML, ifcZIP files.
This is the Wynne Jones Building of Northumbria University, in xBIM Xplorer.
On the left-hand side of the Xplorer, users can navigate through a tree-view to inspect the various properties of the BIM model. On the right-hand side, is the view of the building.
xBIM Xplorer lets users show/hide a part or whole parts of a building.
xBIM Xplorer lets users view a building in 360° degrees.
A semi-detached house in xBIM Xplorer.