Epic Games, the developer of the Fortnite computer game, has provided funding to a new service that can stream industry foundation classes (IFC) BIM models to mobile devices.
As part of its so-called MegaGrant funding, Epic has awarded funding to Tridify’s new service that automatically publishes any IFC file to the Unreal Engine and streams it to users via a URL. As the model is streamed directly to a device, there is no need to download any additional applications.
IFC is the international platform-neutral, open file format standard that facilitates interoperability.
The service works with any size of model on any device, according to Tridify. Previously, due to the size of data and restrictions of mobile devices, viewing large models remotely made collaboration difficult. Users can now benefit from uninterrupted workflows, the company said.
Users can select to combine different models, such as architecture, HVAC, plumbing or electricity, or simply choose to stream a complete BIM model. Future tools will include mark-up, annotations, measuring and cutting planes.
"Being able to view any type of BIM model on any device, rendered in the industry’s highest quality game engine Unreal, is a major milestone in the streamlining of workflows," said Alexander Le Bell, Tridify CEO. "The service solves the problem of how to share complete models of large scale developments such as airports, hospitals or shopping malls with everyone, anywhere, without any technical or financial barriers. Tridify is delighted to receive the MegaGrant from Epic Games to create the new service and transform the working practices of architects, engineers and BIM managers."
"The new Tridify service opens up amazing opportunities for the [construction] community to benefit from the power of Unreal Engine visualisations, as they work more remotely with increasingly complex BIMs," commented David Weir-McCall, business development, Unreal Engine Enterprise, Epic Games. "Making Unreal Engine more accessible in this way will allow the [construction] ecosystem to understand projects more easily and open communication between designer and client."
Users of Tridify’s existing services include Arup, Skanska and WSP.