Research Topic

Historic Building Information Modeling (HBIM) – Current Challenges and Future Opportunities

About this Research Topic

According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), cultural heritage includes tangible culture (such as buildings, monuments, landscapes, etc.), intangible culture (such as folklore, traditions, language, and knowledge), and natural heritage. All of them reflect universal values of legacy. Due to the historical value of the heritage structures and their status within both local and national heritage contexts, it was deemed important for these locations to be archived in a way that expands the breadth of dissemination and facilitates ease of access for scholars and researchers. Documentation is considered one of the first processes that must take place for the preservation of heritage structures, which is to record the past and current conditions of resources at a level of detail for a variety of uses. Based upon these documentation records, resources may be studied, restored, and even reconstructed to enhance cultural records and collective memory.

As one of the fastest-developing fields within heritage studies, for both research and practice, Historic Building Information Modeling (or Heritage Building Information Modeling, HBIM) is a multi-disciplinary process that requires the contribution and collaboration of professionals with very different skillsets. Unlike BIM workflows for new constructions, the tried and tested tools and methods must be adapted, and even reinvented, for HBIM applications. The digital revolution and opportunities to leverage modern technologies, such as light detection and ranging (LiDAR), photogrammetry, 360-degree photography, digital twin, virtual reality (VR) and unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), provide innovative means to document, interpret, and restore heritage structures.

Building Information Modelling (BIM) is a widespread technology in the new-build construction sector; however, it is not commonly used when it comes to heritage preservation. Because BIM can represent the actual conservation state of the analyzed buildings in a virtual environment, researchers have argued that BIM can become an invaluable decision-making and management tool for historical assets. HBIM represents a promising tool for the management of heritage structures, both for daily operations as well as preservation planning. However, the digital reconstruction procedures associated with historic buildings are not straightforward: the objects associated with historic models consist of components whose heterogeneous, complex, and irregular characteristics and morphologies are not represented in the BIM software libraries.

The goal of this special issue is to present the recent advancements within the implementation of HBIM and share the current knowledge among the HBIM scholars and practitioners, especially with the promising development of artificial intelligence (AI) aided modelling technology, LiDAR, photogrammetry, 360-degree photography, digital twin, virtual reality (VR) and unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).

The scope of this research topic aims to provide a venue for the scholars and practitioners to publish the state-of-the-art methods and techniques of Historic Building Information Modeling (HBIM). Issues under this research topic could be connected to, but are not limited to, the following listed areas:
•Philosophy, strategy and techniques of research and practice in Historic Building Information Modeling
•Enhancing data capture
•Automating HBIM model development with higher accuracy and better productivity
•Advancing HBIM data storage and management
•Using HBIM as a virtual platform to promote cultural heritage sites
•Utilizing HBIM for operation and facility management
•Successful case study


Keywords: Historic Building Information Modeling, Heritage Building Information Modeling, Cultural Heritage, LiDAR, Digital Twin


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

According to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), cultural heritage includes tangible culture (such as buildings, monuments, landscapes, etc.), intangible culture (such as folklore, traditions, language, and knowledge), and natural heritage. All of them reflect universal values of legacy. Due to the historical value of the heritage structures and their status within both local and national heritage contexts, it was deemed important for these locations to be archived in a way that expands the breadth of dissemination and facilitates ease of access for scholars and researchers. Documentation is considered one of the first processes that must take place for the preservation of heritage structures, which is to record the past and current conditions of resources at a level of detail for a variety of uses. Based upon these documentation records, resources may be studied, restored, and even reconstructed to enhance cultural records and collective memory.

As one of the fastest-developing fields within heritage studies, for both research and practice, Historic Building Information Modeling (or Heritage Building Information Modeling, HBIM) is a multi-disciplinary process that requires the contribution and collaboration of professionals with very different skillsets. Unlike BIM workflows for new constructions, the tried and tested tools and methods must be adapted, and even reinvented, for HBIM applications. The digital revolution and opportunities to leverage modern technologies, such as light detection and ranging (LiDAR), photogrammetry, 360-degree photography, digital twin, virtual reality (VR) and unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), provide innovative means to document, interpret, and restore heritage structures.

Building Information Modelling (BIM) is a widespread technology in the new-build construction sector; however, it is not commonly used when it comes to heritage preservation. Because BIM can represent the actual conservation state of the analyzed buildings in a virtual environment, researchers have argued that BIM can become an invaluable decision-making and management tool for historical assets. HBIM represents a promising tool for the management of heritage structures, both for daily operations as well as preservation planning. However, the digital reconstruction procedures associated with historic buildings are not straightforward: the objects associated with historic models consist of components whose heterogeneous, complex, and irregular characteristics and morphologies are not represented in the BIM software libraries.

The goal of this special issue is to present the recent advancements within the implementation of HBIM and share the current knowledge among the HBIM scholars and practitioners, especially with the promising development of artificial intelligence (AI) aided modelling technology, LiDAR, photogrammetry, 360-degree photography, digital twin, virtual reality (VR) and unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).

The scope of this research topic aims to provide a venue for the scholars and practitioners to publish the state-of-the-art methods and techniques of Historic Building Information Modeling (HBIM). Issues under this research topic could be connected to, but are not limited to, the following listed areas:
•Philosophy, strategy and techniques of research and practice in Historic Building Information Modeling
•Enhancing data capture
•Automating HBIM model development with higher accuracy and better productivity
•Advancing HBIM data storage and management
•Using HBIM as a virtual platform to promote cultural heritage sites
•Utilizing HBIM for operation and facility management
•Successful case study


Keywords: Historic Building Information Modeling, Heritage Building Information Modeling, Cultural Heritage, LiDAR, Digital Twin


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

29 August 2021 Abstract
27 December 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

29 August 2021 Abstract
27 December 2021 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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