Integration of passive RFID location tracking for real-time visualization in building information models (BIM)

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Costin, Aaron M.
Teizer, Jochen
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Navigation through large and unfamiliar facilities with labyrinths of corridors and rooms is difficult and often results in a person being lost. Additionally, locating a specific utility within a facility is often a tough task. The hypothesis tested in this research is that integrating real-time automated sensing technology and a Building Information Model will provide real time visualization that can assist in localization and navigation of a facility. The scope of this research is facility maintenance management during the Operation and Maintenance (O&M) phase of a facility. The thesis demonstrates how the integration of passive Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tracking technology and Building Information Modeling (BIM) can assist in facilities maintenance management. The objectives of this research included 1) developing a framework that utilizes the integration of commercially-available RFID and a BIM model; 2) evaluating the framework for real-time resource location tracking within an indoor environment; and 3) developing an algorithm for real-time localization and visualization in a BIM model. A prototype application has been developed that simultaneously connects the RFID readers, a database, and a BIM model. The goal of this system is to have a real-time localization accuracy of 3 meters at 95% confidence. Testing was conducted in laboratory conditions, and the results show that the system error was within the 3 meters goal.
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