What is a Level Of Detail (LOD)?

The level of detail, better known by the acronym LOD (Level Of Detail), corresponds to the geometric precision of a digital model.

The geometric precision of a digital model is characterized by the precision of the 3D objects that constitute it. Global geometric richness making it possible to obtain a more or less high level of information so that it can be adapted to the specificities of a project.

Five main levels of LOD have been established, ranging from the least detailed standard to the richest standard: LOD 100, 200, 300, 400, and 500.

What is the purpose of LODs?

Depending on the specificities of his project and the associated specifications, it will be a question of quantifying the information necessary for his use of the model. An LOD level can then be associated with this minimum level of information and provide guidelines for obtaining a BIM modeling consistent with his project.

To summarize, correctly defining the LOD of your digital model will allow you to:

  • Remove ambiguities in deliverables with the team in charge of modeling;
  • Frame the modeling phase with precise specifications;
  • Optimize modeling costs according to your needs.

Optimizing the LOD of a digital model

An entire digital model does not necessarily have to offer the same level of detail. On the contrary!

Defining a different level of detail for different batches of objects can be very relevant for optimizing costs and production times of a model, while guaranteeing a deliverable adapted to the uses of the project entities.

For example, a fluid engineering firm could quite use a model composed of an architectural structure at LOD 200 and fluid networks and terminals modeled at LOD 400.

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