BIM Generative Design with Dynamo Refinery

22 May 2019All



In December 2018, Autodesk released an initial version of Refinery, a Dynamo Generative Design package that works with Dynamo version 2.02 and is mainly used with Revit 2019 and Revit 2020.

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Developed by Kean Walmsley (Platform Architect & Evangelist, Autodesk Software Development), and Lorenzo Villaggi (Research Scientist Associate, The Living, an Autodesk Studio), Refinery is the new buzz word for Dynamo Generative Design. It has created a lot of interest in the AEC community, especially around its usefulness and whether or not it will replace the job of architects.

Refinery combines artificial intelligence (AI) with human creativity to create design solutions that otherwise would not be possible. Instead of starting the design process with the form of the building, Refinery Generative Design starts with defining the goals and constraints of the design problem. The software is then tasked with the automatic generation, evaluation and evolution of thousands of solutions.

Chair made using generative design. Source: FastCompany

So how does it work? A designer applies generative technology on any part of the design process, from the macro to the micro. The process seems random, but it is not. It uses a genetic algorithm – similar to breeding, natural selection and mutation – where only the best solution is considered by AI for the next generation.

The human component comes in afterwards to navigate the large set of design options and weigh the features and trade-offs. Design evolution is the optimization part that improves performance. Generative design is objective, not biased. It just opens more possibilities for the designer to explore than they may have originally thought of.

If you’d like a demo of Dynamo, contact Applied Software today and discover how you can add a new level of creativity to your design solutions.

For more information about downloading and installing Refinery, please refer to the links below.


Is GENERATIVE DESIGN the future of architecture?

Generative Design with DYNAMO – Refinery tutorial

Generative Design in Architecture | In the Innovation Zone at AU



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