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Description

A digital representation of a physical asset or the service delivered by it, used to make decisions that will affect the physical asset. Any changes to the physical assets will be reflected in the digital twin.



Explanation

In the context of Digital Built Britain a digital twin is a realistic digital representation of assets, processes or systems in the built or natural environment. What distinguishes a digital twin from any other digital model is its connection to the physical twin. Based on data from the physical asset or system, a digital twin unlocks value principally by supporting improved decision making, which creates the opportunity for positive feedback into the physical twin. The concept of digital twins is not new: Nasa has run complex simulations of spacecraft for decades. However, the advance of the ‘fourth industrial revolution’ is making cyber-physical systems in the built environment practical, useful and affordable, and digital twins are a key part of this. 

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holgerkessler

Posted

I am interested in examples of digital twins of the natural environment (groundwater, soil, geology, ground properties/resources in particular) - do we need to define what those are -  would love to hear other people's thoughts

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Neil Thomspon

Posted

On 19/05/2020 at 10:43, holgerkessler said:

I am interested in examples of digital twins of the natural environment (groundwater, soil, geology, ground properties/resources in particular) - do we need to define what those are -  would love to hear other people's thoughts

Thats a good question, I wonder if we can find people in this space to contribute? I would assume the language is not developed in this space!

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Michael Mulquin

Posted

Our draft IEC Smart Cities Systems Committee definition of digital twin is:

Digital Twin

formal, explicit, computer-readable and computer-executable digital representation of an object or system that allows a computer to understand that object or system

Note 1

Digital twins can be made of material objects and systems (house, city, human, electrical distribution system etc.) and of immaterial objects (process, project plan, etc.)

Note 2

Digital twins can be primary, when the digital representation is developed before the physical object or system is built to help in the design or construction of that object or system. Or they can be secondary, when they are developed to represent an object or system that already exists in the physical world.

Note 3

A digital twin of an existing object or system is created from data gathered from Internet of Things (IoT) sensors, with scientific and social-science modelling, machine learning and other advanced analytics applied to replicate the behaviour of that object or system, supporting decision making.

Note 4

A digital twin of an existing object or system is more than just a model: it must have a two-way connection with that object or system and should provide dynamic as well as static representations of that object or system. Data needs to flow between the physical twin and the digital, enabling insights and creating the opportunity for positive interventions within the physical twin.

 

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holgerkessler

Posted

I am missing a consideration of the natural environment that most infrastructure is grounded in - if we fail to connect up with the Geology/Soil/Groundwater/Archaeology/Geotechnics community we will miss a trick and the predictability of city or infrastructure digital twins will be severely impeded.

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David McKee

Posted

On 27/05/2020 at 07:36, holgerkessler said:

I am missing a consideration of the natural environment that most infrastructure is grounded in - if we fail to connect up with the Geology/Soil/Groundwater/Archaeology/Geotechnics community we will miss a trick and the predictability of city or infrastructure digital twins will be severely impeded.

Our internal definition subtly swaps out the term "asset" for "environment" to keep us conscious of things such as ground movements or air quality.

Quote

A digital environment that reflects on, mirrors, and evolves ahead of the physical environment or service to facilitate SMART decision making.

 

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Javed Edahtally

Posted

As organisations seek to develop their understanding of digital twins and devise an approach and implementation plan, the advocates/champions will need to pitch to the purse string holders.   Often times he purse string holder want to understand what’s the minimum expenditure to deliver a service/capability.  
 

in my experience it’s useful to break a capability down into constituent parts and have a quality scale. Perhaps good, silver or bronze. An organisation can then pitch a quality level within the areas key to their organisation. 
 

can we define an exemplar scale or at least make a start?!

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David McKee

Posted

Would it be worth considering something similar to TRL or IRL (technology/investment readiness levels)?

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