Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) is a standardized, digital description of the built asset industry. It has been widely adopted as the international standards by various countries and BIM applications throughout the world. The technical core of the IFC is ISO certified in 2013 (ISO 16739-1:2018). The use of IFC promotes vendor-neutral, or agnostic, and usable capabilities across a wide range of hardware devices, software platforms, and interfaces for many different use cases[1].

To ensure that BIM applications are able to exchange information with each other, it is important that the applications demonstrate proofs that they can produce (export IFC) and consume (import IFC) in a standard, well-defined, and comprehensive way. buildingSMART has a certification program that it runs for many years. The latest certification is for IFC4 Reference View 1.2 that includes architectural, structural, and building services (MEP) export and import exchanges. Starting with IFC4 certification, buildingSMART has significantly improve the criteria and vigorousness of the certification process including the requirement of 100% compliance of detailed and well-defined specifications, automated testing tool, and manual validation by the qualified certifiers. There are total of 45 test cases for the certification: 16 architecture, 13 structure, 16 MEP export test cases. For import certification, software must be able to import all 45 test cases, multiply by as many numbers of the calibration files from various software that have been certified for their respective export certification that is totalled to 137 test cases for import.

Recognizing the importance of standards, not only in Singapore but also internationally, novaCITYNETS’ FORNAX joined the certification process in September 2021. It took quite significant efforts to comply to ALL the certification requirements down to every single detail such as the geometry and, individual property, the spatial structure, colour, etc. FORNAX completed the IFC4 RV certification successfully on the 1st of February 2023 after the straight two 3-hours sessions. With this certification FORNAX joins the prestigious list of just three other software that have successfully completed their IFC4 RV import certification (at 10 Feb 2023)[2]. They are Autodesk Revit, Jo Consulting’s BridgeBIM, Trimble Tekla Structure. FORNAX’s success is contributed by the wealth of knowledge by the dedicated FORNAX team, which is familiar with the certification process having been involved the process since the early 2000 for the IFC2x2 code checking view. Furthermore, Dr. Wawan Solihin who is leading the FORNAX team is very familiar with the buildingSMART, IFC, and the certification process, since he has been involved to coordinate the IFC2x2 code checking view certification, leading IFC2x3 certification for AutoCAD Architecture/MEP while he was in Autodesk, and assisting the Autodesk Revit team to achieve its IFC4 RV export and import certifications as well.

The IFC4 Certification helps to cement novaCITYNETS’ commitment to supporting open standards, support Singapore’s efforts to employ standard for regulatory compliance specifications IFC-SG, which novaCITYNETS team help to define together with 7 Singapore Regulatory Agencies, and to further assure users and potential users that FORNAX is a trusted platform for managing large BIM data in openBIM/IFC standard, and validating the building data for various user-defined requirements, as well as the rigorous demands for the compliance to building codes.


[1] From buildingSMART International webpage:


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