Bricsys released V 15.3 last week. This is the second major feature-adding update during the life-cycle of V15.
BricsCAD V 15.3 takes a significant leap forward in enabling more BIM. You can now define a wall as a composite material consisting of multi-ply materials defined in a central database.
With this single feature, BricsCAD now enables database-driven building geometry definition. This is a significant step towards BIM-based building modeling.
There are all-round improvements and fixes in other areas as well. In the Mechanical browser, an option has been added to enable/disable the 3D Constraints.
New commands like DMGROUP has been added for better selection and grouping of 3d solid edges and faces.
A new command called DMSIMPLIFY has been added to simplify geometry and topology of 3d solid entities. It removes unnecessary edges and vertices, merges seam edges, and replaces the geometry of faces and edges by analytic surfaces and curves, if possible within the user-specified tolerance. It is recommended to always run this command on imported 3d solid geometry.
Materials and Compositions
A BIM database consists of Building Materials and Compositions. A Building Material contains information about one specific material: its appearance, cost, manufacturer, etc. A Composition contains information about the structure of a building element, by defining Composition layers. Each Composition layer refers to a Building Material, and has a certain thickness.
Project database and Library database
A BIM Project consists of dwg entities, classified as Building Elements, to which Compositions can be attached. All Compositions being used in a project, are stored in the Project database. The Project database can be stored inside a dwg file, or in a separate file with extension .bimlib. When the Project database is embedded in a dwg file, that dwg file contains the complete BIM Project. When the Project database is stored as an external bimlib file, the BIM Project can consist of multiple dwg files, all using the same Project database.
To reuse compositions and building materials across multiple BIM Projects, a Library database can be specified, in addition to the Project database. The Library database is a bimlib file, usually stored in a location which is common to several projects. When Compositions and Building Materials from the Library database are used in a BIM Project, they are automatically imported in the Project database. To maintain and extend BIM databases, users can drag Building Materials and Compositions from one database to the other, provided that they have write access to the destination database.
"The same flexibility as we offer in modelling, we offer in attaching building information. Although Compositions are grouped into Wall, Slab, Roof and Generic Compositions, any type of Composition can be attached to any dwg entity. When that dwg entity is a 3D Solid, with certain geometrical properties, then we will use the information from the Composition to control the thickness, and the cross section will show the structure by applying the hatch patterns from the different layers on the section geometry. When a 3D Solid is assigned a Composition which enforces a thickness or a minimal thickness, and this thickness can not be applied on the geometry, the section will appear in red to indicate the problem, that the dwg entity does not match with the chosen Composition." as mentioned in the V 15.3 Release Notes.
A Composition describes the structure of a Building Element by an ordered set of Composition layers. Each Composition layer has following fields:
The Building Material for this layer.
One of (None, Structure, Substrate, Insulation, Finish1, Finish2, Membrane). In this version this field serves for information only.
Defines the thickness of the layer.
Specifies whether this layer should always have the same, fixed thickness, or that it has a variable thickness. Only one layer in a Composition can have a variable thickness. As such, a Composition can have a fixed total thickness (all its layers have a locked thickness), a minimal total thickness (there are two or more layers of which one has a varying thickness) or a free thickness (there is only one layer and it has a varying thickness). A Building Material can optionally have a locked thickness on its own, layers using such material can not have a variable thickness.
BIM Compositions panel
All BIM database features are accessible from the dockable panel named "BIM Compositions" :
- drag and drop Compositions on the model
- drag and drop Compositions from one database to the other
- open the Compositions editor
- open the Building Materials editor
- open the BIM Project Info dialog. In this dialog you can specify the location of Project and Library database, find some statistics about the databases, and manage the project filter. The project filter is explained in the next section about tags.
To each Building Material or Composition, any number of tags can be attached. Any string can be entered as tag, and a list of existing tags in the library is available to choose from. On the project info dialog, each of the tags can be used as a filter on the database: when a tag is checked, only those Building Materials or Compositions which have that tag, will be listed. There is a button at the top of each list, to switch the filter on or off.
The Hidden Improvements
And, lastly, here are some critical yet less-noticed improvements that will improve your usability significantly:
- Over 50 fixes and improvements in geographic location, MAPCONNECT, 3d modeling, Sheet Metal, BIM and other general BricsCAD features.
- 17 fixes and improvements in API support
- 2 Improvements in BricsCAD Communicator
(Many portions of the content has been taken from the V 15.3 Release Notes)
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