BIM for the Subsurface

A cloud-based database of UK geological and geotechnical data and 3D ground models could soon become a reality.

Thanks to new research led by Keynetix and support by our partners the British Geological Survery (BGS), Atkins and Autodesk

Civil ImageHBSI Innovate UK



This two year, £540,000 BIM for the subsurface project is funded by Innovate UK under its Digitising the Construction Industry initiative started in April 2015 and expected to run for 2 years.

One of the biggest sticking points of incorporating geotechnical data in BIM is that many geotechnical teams are reluctant to share interpreted data with the wider project team, because they are worried it will be misused.

We hope this research will help alleviate those concerns, improving collaboration and data sharing. This will lead to a more complete understanding of the ground, resulting in more informed decision-making throughout the lifetime of a project.


“This project will lead to a step-change in how the BGS delivers its data and models to the geotechnical engineering and construction sectors. It builds on an increasingly open and accessible wealth of information in the BGS National Geoscience Data Centre.”   Kate Royse, Director of Environmental Modelling at BGS

“BGS has been at the forefront of geological data management, visualisation and delivery for some time. What makes this project special is that it will provide us with direct links to geologists and engineers on the ground. We are very excited about the potential positive impact on the construction process.”  Holger Kessler, Team Leader for the modelling systems development at BGS


“We have a very strong research team. It combines Keynetix’ expertise in developing HoleBASE SI and the Extension for Civil 3D; BGS’ world-leading knowledge of 3D modeling; Atkins’ experience in the practical application of both data and ground models; plus Autodesk’s background in developing BIM.” Gary Morin – Project Leader and Keynetix Technical Director



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