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  Generic Model Creation 

Example: Bridge Box 2 Voids 
ICDAS YouTube Channel   ICDAS GEN 2019.00R 

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Model description


BIM model

Analysis model


































This example demonstrates a curved concrete bridge in Revit using ICDAS Generic Model Creation. All components of the bridge are automated by parametric input, including:

    Concrete box deck with two voids. The box depth-to-span ratio is 3.4% (=4/116=1/29)

    Alignment has a curve length 116m R2000 at the center.

    The two sides are rectilinear tangent to the center span, 2x58m horizontal length.

    Pier columns have input for radius at top and bottom.

    Bearings, people and vehicles are loaded from ICDAS Bridge Libraries


Parametric input of the bridge are entered in Excel file where the user create and control each component by additive running input (ARI). E.g. a new design of pier can easily be modified by Ctrl+Z (or delete) the existing and automate again with new input. Some simple 2D lines sketches and measures are performed directly on the model. These help-lines are organized and stored in subcategories which can be turn on/off during working on the model.



Below the four basis views in Revit are shown, respectively, Plan, Longitudinal section (LG), Section 1 (S1) and Section 2 (S2). Automation for any component of the bridge can be at any view. By double click on a view icon, Revit will link to that view.

Plan, Longitudinal section, Cross section 1 and 2


FigureFloor Plan and Project Base Point.

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All ICDAS models start in Revit at Project Base Point (PBP), (X, Y, Z)=(0,0,0). All lengths, widths, angles are with respect to the red XY-Coordinate at PBP in Floor Plan view shown above. Once the real global coordinate and the angle to the North are known at PBP, they are entered at PBP in Floor Plan Site View. Hereby the entire 3D BIM model is updating after the new coordinate system including all associated views created in the project.


FigureLongitudinal section (LG)

The vertical alignment has curve length 116m R2000 at the center span and the two side spans rectilinear tangent grade 2.9% are chosen for a parametric test purpose, which do not refer to any specific criterion for vertical alignment (appearance, riding comfort and sight distance). However, these parameters are depended on the speed of vehicles, and therefore can be relevant at a permitted speed which is not focused in the scope of this example.


The center curved deck 116m is created first, then the two tangent side spans of 58m.


FigureSection 1.



All dimensions of the bridge above are parametric input entered in Excel file. The pier, abutment and foundation are also automated from ICDAS Generic Models Creation. Alternatively, the pier can be selected and loaded from ICDAS Bridge Libraries. However, the goal of this example is to automate the entire bridge in one family file by numerical input.


FigureSection 2.


The abutment is inputted in 100mm distance from bottom of deck. Depended on the LUSAS FEM model  analyzed results, this gap will be fixed concrete casting, or by arrangement of bearings.


The input


This section shows an example of parametric input for the deck box.


FigureInput of the deck box.


Below explains the steps of input for the deck box above.

1. Sketch 2D in Profile Plan Elev. Left

a/ Set Option11, SB BasisY (BasisXYZ=2). The profile plan is (Y Left, X Down) in Elev. Left. Note that the profile plan is not a global plan in this option.


b/ In profile plan coordinate sketch 2D lines for the 15-points solid deck, then the two 8-points voids, incl. points numbering and distances.

2. Edit Solid Profiles

a/ Enter the orange (XDist, YDist) from point1. Set nSTL=1


b/ For nSTL=1 set X from 0 to 20m. The STL 20m is not important since we will return to the STL later. Run add-ins for the solid deck.

3. Edit Void Profiles

Go back to 1a/ and set SB Void BasisY (BasisXYZ=2).


Enter (XDist, YDist) for Void1 from point 1 (blue). Void2 is a copy of Void1 where point 1, 3 and 5 are modified. Run add-ins for the voids in the deck.

4. View in 3D


Go to 3D View for the result. Press Ctrl+Z to undo in Revit, go back to the Excel to input the STL. 

The same input manner can be used for the tunnel. Refer subscription for the ICDAS add-ins and full description of other components of the bridge, including other types of bridges and infrastructural  constructions.

Bearings & White Lines details




FigureBridge subcategories.

ICDAS organizes the bridge components in subcategories which are turning on/off in Revit Visibility/Graphic Overrides. Above the ‘Deck Start Span’ is unchecked to display the ‘Deck Main Span’ while the ‘Pavement Start’ above the deck is selected in transparent light blue. The names of subcategories in Revit BIM are the same as ‘Group’ in LUSAS FEM. The user can easily rename or reorganize Revit subcategories and LUSAS Group at any time.


A bearing is enlarged in the above image. Set transparency 50 on the steel material to highlight the spherical elastomer inside in black. The spherical elastomer allows the upper steel plate to rotate free about X, Y and Z-axes. This elastomeric bearing can be rubber-based macro-molecular material (Mageba), which also can translated when subjected to loading and regains its original size and shape after removal of the loading. The steel plates above and below the spherical elastomer can be anchored to the concrete deck and pier/columns by dowel bar or dowel bolt. These dowels can be modelled in Revit bearing family then reload to the project. In case the required bearings do not find from the manufacturer catalogues then the BIM model will started a conceptual bearing dimension for the manufacturers, as shown in this example.



ICDAS Generic Models Creation automate also the white lines on the pavement. The traffic lanes shown above are good locating above the vertical walls of the deck box which again are good locating above the columns. Thus, punching in the deck is not an issue. The white line even a non-structural object but its appearance will clarify the traffic loads on bridge. 

They provider also geometry in case of further designs needed.

Once 3D objects created, there are unlimited number of 3D views, cameras can be taken in Revit for illustration of the bridge from any angle, as shown in two images below. Further, by upload the model to Revit LIVE the user can experience the bridge in Virtual Reality. Design of bridge using ICDAS at the end will no longer depended on hundreds of drawings, and to administrate them the years after. The users just enter into Virtual Reality, discuss the situation and print exactly the interested view to the print.



Updated 26-08-2018 

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123456789_123456789_1123456789ICDAS  •  Hans Erik Nielsens Vej 3  •  DK-3650 Ølstykke  •   E-mail: th@icdas.dk   •  Tel.: +45 60 53 83 79  •  CVR no.: 34436169