BIM LOD500 going out of fashion?

How Digital Twins are changing the way information is managed and accessed by the built world for operations management.

Richard Sugandha
3 min readDec 1, 2021
Photo by Pan Yunbo on Unsplash

If you’re wondering how BIM translates to operational savings in facilities management, you’ve probably come across the term LOD (Level of Detail) — this refers to is the level of detail required to make BIM useable. Details range anywhere from LOD 100 to 500, in which LOD500 refers to additional parameter information required beyond geometry. This is just one of the many standards that exist today………

Confused by all of this? Don’t be alarmed, you’re not alone. After speaking to a number of building owners, we’ve come to the consensus that very few have a good grasp of these standards — or BIM in general. Today, there is wide acceptance that BIM needs to be LOD500 to yield operational savings, but is this necessarily true?

Commissioning and handover

When a building is nearing completion, as-built information is handed over to the asset owner, something similar to receiving an instruction manual that would come with the purchase of a shiny new fridge. Contained in the BIM would supposedly be all the information required to operate the building. If the pump broke down in the basement several months later, all the information required to have this issue rectified would be found in the BIM model, “Great right!”

The value of BIM really shines through the storage and management of building information, whereby traditionally this was done on paper— but it does come at a cost! one that is most welcomed by BIM consultants. This information doesn’t magically appear, it requires a BIM trained specialist and proprietary software to input, maintain and access.

Asset Lifecycle

Over the total lifespan of any built asset, operations represent the lion’s share and construction a mere fraction. So why is such an amazing tool like BIM, not widely adopted beyond the construction of built assets?

For high-value assets, owners typically have a budget to maintain specialised BIM teams to organise, update and access BIM information. But for the vast majority of owners, this is far from reality. The sad truth is — BIM information handed over after construction is usually stashed away on a hard drive collecting dust because owners are not equipped with the tools or personnel to access its value. How valuable is information, if users are not able to access it??

There must be a better way to access information?

Digital Twin for the Built World

Information becomes valuable if it's usable and accessible. A BIM data structure ensures usability and the TwinLogic web application takes care of accessibility.

The TwinLogic application goes further and aligns real-time data streams from IoT or systems with BIM geometries of the physical space to create a powerful Digital Twin.

TwinLogic Web Application — Digital Twin

it’s not about reinventing a new way of creating BIM, but challenging the necessity of inputting LOD500 information into a proprietary system.

Inputting information into proprietary systems creates a bottleneck……….

Removing the bottleneck is as simple as interchanging the BIM proprietary database with something more user friendly such as a spreadsheet! In doing so building owners can now-

  • Access BIM information anytime, almost anywhere, on almost all devices.
  • Maintain BIM information without the need to invest in additional hardware or training for personnel.
  • Crowd-source the maintenance of data, allowing all users from the technician to the CEO to update information using simple tools like a spreadsheet.
  • See information dynamically, whether it's from IoT devices or systems the information displayed is always the latest.

The question remains, is inputting parameter information to achieve LOD500 still a thing? Or is pulling parameter information dynamically from multiple spreadsheets and external databases the right way moving forward. I would imagine the latter to be more flexible for most users, perhaps Digital Twins are the new black.



Richard Sugandha

CEO & Co-founder of TwinLogic, a technology startup contributing to the Metaverse.