All About BIM Level of Development

The Level of Development or LOD is a set of specifications that gives professionals in the Architecture, Engineering, and Construction industry the capability to document, articulate, and specify the content of BIM effectively and clearly. Serving as an industry standard, LOD defines the development stages of different systems in BIM. By using LOD specifications, architects, engineers, and other professionals can clearly communicate with each other without confusion for faster execution.

All About BIM Level of Development | DAT Blog

The American Institute of Architects introduced the Level of Development or LOD which defines five levels of development in an architectural model. It was introduced to represent different levels of detail in a building's model but there had been other descriptions before that have been presented. The first instance of LOD system adaptation can be traced back to Vico Software and other construction analysis software companies. They were the first construction analysis software company to make use of a similar concept of the system and associate digital models with a project cost. The system provides access to all the details involved when creating a model at every stage of the design. Currently, there are six levels of development, with LOD 350 as the latest version with at least 80 to 90 percent of modeling elements even on higher versions.

What is the Level of Development or LOD in BIM?

The Level of Development specification enables professionals in the industry to outline how the geometry of an element and changes on its related data throughout the entire design process. It presents the stage at which various members of the team can depend on the data integrated with an element. The LOD requirements assist designers to determine the attributes of the model elements within every stage of the development process. The significant transparency of the graphic model offers a reliable resource.

Engineers and designers can productively communicate with other team members and professionals by utilizing the LOD model's further limitations. The design of the system features a standardized framework that can be used as an effective tool.

Fundamentals of Level of Development 

LOD deliberately outlines the milestones and deliverables of a completed design phase which includes several significant approaches at each stage. There are six levels of LOD that are defined by the American Institute of Architects and are still being used at present for BIM services in Dubai

LOD 100 - Concept Design

A pre-design stage where the model is layout through two-dimensional representation signifying the existing elements.

LOD 200 - Schematic Design

The elements are relatively established by outlining the estimated size, shape, quantity, and location.

LOD 300 - Detailed Design

The elements are established with accurate dimensions and relevant points supporting the accuracy

LOD 350 - Construction Documentation

Defines the data about an element accurately and outlines an element’s relevance and association with other components.

LOD 400 - Fabrication and Assembly

This level outlines the fundamental data about the construction of profuse elements.

LOD 500 - As-built and Operations

Through this stage, the model initiates the exhibition of the actual functions with complete definitions in detail of the elements and components in the existing structure.

Architects created detailed standards that now exist all throughout the industry which were not available in the earlier stage of design phases. The standards differ from one organization to another, and they can even differ within a single organization according to the requirements of a project. BIM Level of Development system presents the progress from the schematic design phase, construction, and maintenance phase. It offers a precise definition and data at various phases along with the current progression of the project or existing structure.

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