The research activities of the Leonhard Obermeyer Center cover a broad range of digital methods which are being developed for sensing, analyzing and shaping the built environment. They are driven by the scientific expertise of the individual chairs as well as by joint research projects. A particular emphasis is put on researching digital methods which are able to bridge the multiple scales involved with modeling and simulating the built environment – from the scale of a few millimeters to the scale of a whole country.

In detail, the research fields covered by the Center’s chairs include: Building Information Modeling, Infrastructure Modeling, Spatial-temporal Analysis, Pedestrian Dynamics, Construction Process Simulation (CMS)

Geospatial Information Modeling, Geographic Information Systems, Spatial Databases and Data Infrastructures, Indoor Navigation (GI)

Computer-Aided Architectural Design, Digital Design Methods, Case-Based Reasoning, Digital Fabrication (AI)

Numerical methods, Finite Element Method, interactive and real time structural simulation, multi-scale and multi-physics problems (CIE)

Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing, Image and Point Cloud Analysis, Computer Vision (PRS) 



Automated Code Compliance Checking

One of the most important issues during the planning of a construction project is to maintain the quality of the design planning constantly at a high level. Therefore this quality must be checked continuously in terms of accuracy and compliance to the applicable codes and guidelines throughout the duration of a project. The aim of this research project is, to develop an approach which enables the automation of this process with the help of digital methods. A cooperation project with Nemetschek Group and ALLPLAN GmbH

USP | Urban Strategy Playground

USP aims to generate interactive tools to support the development of inner-city planning strategies. By monitoring key building codes and providing visualizations and simulation results in real-time they serve as an informed basis for debate and argumentation in the political decision-making and planning process and in turn support the development of inner-city planning strategies that are well-suited to their urban context.

Virtual Arabia - GIS2BIM: Multi Resultion Models of Constructions and Built Infrastructure

In this project, we concentrate on constructions and built infrastructure with special interest in providing information at a varying and dynamically changing depth. We develop a system that provides the possibility of receiving detailed information (even on very fine-grain levels) about constructions in real time still preserving interactive information steering despite a huge data advent.

KSD | Knowledge Supported Design

The aim of this research is to provide the architect with IT support in the early design stages. In essence, the project extends two of the architect’s primary tools – the sketch and the use of case study references – through the use of information technology, the data storage capacity of the computer and the ability to rapidly transport information in data networks.

CDP | Collaborative Design Platform

Using a computer in order to realize creative design tasks is still cumbersome an inefficient. One of the most challenging problems is the inadequate Human-Computer Interaction of most of the current computer systems. Within an interdisciplinary project a collaborative design platform has been developed on a scale of 1:1.

Energy Atlas Berlin

The Energy Atlas Berlin is a tool supporting the strategic environment and energy planning in Berlin and London. It comprises the representation of the actual state of the environment, energy-related objects and parameters in the sense of an urban inventory. Furthermore, different options for measures such as the comparison of the estimated energy demands and the production and savings potential, e.g. by renewable energy sources and energetic retrofitting of buildings, can be both analyzed and visualized.

Construction progress control based on integrated point cloud interpretation and 4d building models

A key issue is the automatic monitoring of the progress of the construction site to detect deviations and to forecast delays. This project concentrates on matching 3D point clouds recorded in a changing environment to an as-planned 3D model for change detection, object extraction, estimation of occluded building parts with integration of construction process knowledge or on-site changes of the planned construction process.

Enrichment and Multi Purpose Visualization of Building Models with Emphasis on Thermal Infrared Data

The project serves two principal goals: (i) to extract and interpret non-visible features of buildings from thermal infrared (TIR) data based on image analysis and (ii) to update and enrich the 3D building models with the information derived from non-visible features.

3D City DB

The award winning 3D City Database is a free 3D geo database to store, represent, and manage CityGML-compliant city models on top of a standard spatial relational database. The database model contains semantically rich, hierarchically structured, multi-scale urban objects facilitating complex GIS modeling and analysis tasks, far beyond visualization.


The international OGC standard CityGML is a common information model and XML-based encoding for the representation, storage, and exchange of virtual 3D city and landscape models and especially takes care of the representation of the semantic and thematic properties, taxonomies and aggregations. These Semantic 3D City Models are used in projects for Urban Information Fusion and City Lifecycle Management.

Computer-Aided Collaborative Subway Planning in Multi-Scale 3D City and Building Models

The research group aims to investigate and develop methods and techniques for the collaborative planning of infrastructural construction projects using 3D urban and building models. The 3D model shall be linked to a spatiotemporal database, to external geodata sources and GIS analysis methods. Using an augmented reality system planners on site will be able to localize the 3D planning model.

Finite Element Mesh Generation

The chair for Computation in Engineering (CiE) has been involved in research in the field of mesh generation since the early 1990ies with developing a surface mesh generation algorithm for discretizing arbitrary freeform surfaces with triangular and quadrilateral elements (DoMesh). In more recent stages of research the surface mesh generator has been enhanced to a mesh generation framework discretizing arbitrary BRep-volumes with curved high-order tetrahedral elements and thin walled shell-like structures with curved high-order hexahedral elements (TUM.GeoFrame).

BIM-coupled vibroacoustic simulation

This project is integrated in a collaborative research funded by DFG and conducted together the Prof. Wohlmuth (TUM, Mathematics), Prof. Schanda (FH Rosenheim) and Dr. Rabold (ift Rosenheim). The objective of this sub-project is to perform numerical simulations using the p-version of the Finite Element Method (p-FEM) to compute and estimate the vibroacoustic behavior of timber constructions. The efficient integration into modern planning workflows motivates the coupling of simulation models with parametric whole-building information models (BIM).e

Very High Resolution Synthetic Aperture Radar

This project deals with the possibilities and challenges of utilizing airborne decimeter resolution InSAR data for the analysis of densely built-up urban areas. In this context, multi-aspect as well as multi-baseline approaches are investigated to derive surface models as well as to extract building models. The specific properties of SAR imagery have to be taken into account: shadowing, foreshortening, layover areas and scatterers show a completely different behavior dependent on the viewing direction of the sensor. This is a big challenge in combining images from different viewing directions, but allows the reduction of areas with shadows and layover.