Computational Algorithms for Digital Twin Support in Construction
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© 2020 American Society of Civil Engineers.Use of computational algorithms in building information modelling (BIM) software such as Autodesk Revit and Rhinoceros comprise rule-based logical data flows that automate processes and computationally explore large decision space domains. The use of computational algorithms has traditionally been used by architecture firms but is starting to also grow in popularity throughout mainstream construction for automation of design tasks, as-built analysis, and for creation of parametric models. This paper demonstrates how computational algorithms can be used to support digital twins in construction and how these workflows can be used to converge on optimal and heuristic solutions to challenging problems. Two examples are explored in this paper. The first is a computational algorithm addressed at a complex geometric challenge in the processing of architectural cladding panels for manufacturing. The second example is a computational workflow comprised of algorithms that extract and process metadata in BIM for automated egress path compliance checking. Lessons learned from these examples demonstrate the power of computational algorithms for complex and highly repetitive design processes. Computational algorithms are proven herein to explore large decision space domains efficiently, and pre-emptively catch costly design/analysis errors.