BIM4Cult: Leveraging BIM and IoT for Enhancing Fire Safety in Historical Buildings.  Anastasios Manos (Managing Director of DOTSOFT , Dr. Despina Elisabeth Filippidou (Portfolio R&D Manager of DOTSOFT




ABSTRACT:  Historical buildings are an integral part of the cultural heritage of every place, and beyond the obvious need for protection against risks, they have specific requirements regarding the handling of hazards and disasters such as fire, floods, earthquakes, etc. Ensuring high levels of protection and safety for these buildings is imperative for two distinct but interconnected reasons: a) they themselves constitute cultural heritage, and b) they are often used as museums/cultural spaces, necessitating the protection of both human life (visitors and workers) and the cultural treasures they house. However, these buildings present serious constraints in implementing the necessary measures to protect them from destruction due to their unique architecture, construction methods, and/or the structural materials used in the past, which have created an existing condition that is sometimes challenging to reshape and operate within the framework of modern regulations and protection measures. One of the most devastating risks that threaten historical buildings is fire. Catastrophic fires demonstrate the need for timely evaluation of fire safety measures in historical buildings. Recognizing the criticality of protecting historical buildings from the risk of fire, the Confederation of Fire Protection Associations in Europe (CFPA E) issued specific guidelines in 2013 (CFPA-E Guideline No 30:2013 F) for the fire protection of historical buildings at the European level. However, until now, few actions have been implemented towards leveraging modern technologies in the field of construction and maintenance of buildings, such as Building Information Modeling (BIM) and the Internet of Things (IoT), for the protection of historical buildings from risks like fires, floods, etc. The project BIM4Cult has bee developed in order to fill this gap. It is a tool for timely assessing and monitoring of the fire safety level of historical buildings using BIM and IoT technologies in an integrated manner. The tool serves as a decision support expert system for improving the fire safety of historical buildings by continuously monitoring, controlling and assessing critical risk factors for fire.

The tool has been developed and validated using the Ioannina cultural heritage municipal building as the pilot case. In order to demonstrate the BIM4Cult business model, the first step involved creating a BIM model for the target building through 3D scanning using a 3D Laser Camera. This was followed by formulating the building's digital twin using Revit software. Additionally, geodata and fire safety factors were incorporated into the BIM model using the Dynamic Fire Safety Model methodology (DFSM).


To gather real-time data, Lidars were installed in the building, enabling unobtrusive people counting analytics and providing information on exits that might be blocked during emergencies. The tool was then utilized during a pilot validation period, showcasing its ability to monitor fire risk assessment in real time. Furthermore, it served as a test-bed for evaluating different fire protection scenarios by modifying building factors that influence the risk assessment results.


Acknowledgments: This research has been co‐financed by the European Regional Development Fund of the European Union and Greek national funds through the Operational Program Competitiveness, Entrepreneurship and Innovation, under the call RESEARCH – CREATE – INNOVATE (project code:T1EDK-03035)»