Our work

COINS helps building systems to talk to each other

The building and construction trade is full of systems of agreements that are far from compatible with each other. TNO is part of the Constructive Objects and INtegration and processes and Systems (COINS) programme that is geared to achieving sector-wide agreements with the aid of ICT. TNO is also performing specific assignments in the development of the COINS standard.

The COINS initiative is a project within PAIS, a platform for the harmonisation of IT structure, that gives full backing to the development of greater cohesion in ICT agreements in the building and construction trade. The development of such a structure is essential if the sector wants to optimise the potential of ICT. Both the building and construction trade as well as the authorities will benefit. COINS is an initiative of and for the building and construction trade with the aim of aiding process innovation in the sector through the 'clever use' of information from 3D constructional objects. The COINS initiative involves TNO and another thirty or so organisations and fits in well with TNO's Building Information Model (BIM) knowledge. Management information in building and construction projects is exchanged through the VISI standard.

COINS standard

TNO is not only a participant in the initiative but is also responsible for performing specific assignments in developing the COINS standard underwritten by the Civil Engineering Centre for Research and Legislation (CUR). TNO is involved to a significant extent in the technical development of the standard and in supporting practical projects through reference implementations of essential software tools. TNO has used various knowledge model development methods in the development of the COINS standard:

  • Semantic modelling
  • Product modelling
  • Geometric model links
  • Service oriented architecture

An initial version appeared in the spring of 2008 and the model and method will be tested and verified in a number of tests in practice. Current practical assignments are still in full swing, and reports from previous projects can be found (following registration) via the COINS website.

Results and progress

Based on the results, the standard will be further developed and extended for the whole lifecycle of a building and international collaboration will be boosted through the BuildingSmart initiative (IFC standard). Future development will go hand-in-hand with other developments like the open-source BIM server, VISI, PMO (Product Modelling Ontology), etc. The draft publication of the COINS system released by the COINS programme in April 2008 (see Downloads) forms the basis for validation by project. We would like to invite you to contribute any comments or points for discussion via the COINS Forum (see website link below). You will also be able to check the COINS frame of reference publication (see 'Downloads'). As for current news on the COINS standard you can visit our website or contact us if you have questions or want more information.




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