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Other Resources for Learning About ISO 15926

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  1. Abstract
  2. ISO 15926 Entry Points
  3. IDS-ADI Resources
    1. Camelot Download Page
  4. RDS/WIP Browsers
    1. rdlfaçade
    2. POSC Caesar Part 4 Browser
    3. DNV Reference Data Browser
    4. TC184-SC4 RDL
  5. Must Read Documents
    1. Compliance Guide
    2. Characterization Methodology
    3. Business Interfaces Definition Guide (BIDG)
    4. ISO 15927-7 Template Specification
    5. Template Methodology
  6. More Reading about ISO 15926
    2. Infoweb ML
    3. ISO Technical Committee 184/Subcommittee 4
  7. ISO 15926 Infrastructure Technology
    1. RDF (Resource Description Framework)
    2. XML (Extensible Markup Language)
    3. OWL (Web Ontology Language)
    4. SPARQL
    5. Gellish
  8. Information Modeling Resources
    1. The Archives of Dr. Matthew West
    2. IOHN Modeling Guide
    3. Other Modeling Guide
  9. Other Stuff
  10. Next


This is a collection of resources that describe the individual pieces that together make up ISO 15926. It starts with good entry points to ISO 15926 and ranges to information about some of the underlaying technology that very few people will have to learn.

ISO 15926 Entry Points

  • IDS-ADI Project. currently resolves to because POSC Caesar Association is hosting it so far. A current initiative is to put a sustainable infrastructure in place for long term, high volume use.

IDS-ADI Resources

Camelot Download Page

The Camelot project was a proof-of-concept demonstrated in mid 2009. It demonstrated several data flows that used the full ISO 15926 specification. Its deliverable was open source software called iRING 1.0. Since it is open source it is free for anyone to use without royalties.

RDS/WIP Browsers

The classes that make up Part 4, the dictionary of ISO 15926, are stored in what is called the RDS/WIP (Reference Data System/Work In Progress.) To search the classes you use an RDS/WIP browser.

For more information about RDS/WIP:

This second link contains links to a great deal of information on how the RDS/WIP is implemented.

There are a number of browsers for the RDS/WIP:


The RDS/WIP Search, otherwise known as the "RDL Façade" was created during the early development of ISO 15926.

For instructions on how to use the browser:

POSC Caesar Part 4 Browser

POSC Caesar has its own library of reference data presented in the form of spreadsheets:

POSC Caesar has developed a browser for ISO 15926-4 reference data:

Some instructions on using the POSC browser:

DNV Reference Data Browser

Det Norske Veritas (DNV) has also created its own browser:


Technical Committee 184 - Subcommittee 4 of ISO maintains its own Reference Data library. The classes in the RDS/WIP are based on these classes.


  • In upper right corner select "lifecycle integration schema".
  • Below, select "201 Entities".
  • Below, select a class. For instance "Single Property Dimension".

Must Read Documents

Compliance Guide

ISO 15926 does not have to be implemented all at once. There are several axes of compliance and several steps on each axis. The Compliance Guide is both a sort of road map to full implementation, and a rough measure of the level of compliance of an ISO 15926 implementation.

The following page discusses Compliance and has a link to the Compliance Specification:

Look for this link:

current working version of The Compliance Specification

Characterization Methodology

Any existing schema can be "characterized", or transformed into an ISO 15926 schema. The easiest way to do this is to use Templates. This page is the beginning of instructions on how to do this.

Look for links to two documents:

  • ISO15926 Methodology Specification for Dataset Template Characterization. (Word document.)
  • ISO15926 Workbook for Public Template Definitions and their Business Selection Logic. (Excel Spreadsheet.)

Business Interfaces Definition Guide (BIDG)

The Business Interfaces Definition Guide (as it is now known) is a discussion of what information should be handed over to the owner of a capital project, and what the benefits are, both short and long term. It is being used by the developers of ISO 15926 to guide the development of the classes that make up Part 4 and the templates that make up Part 7. It is worth reading to understand the direction the development of ISO 15926 will take. It is issued in two parts:

  • Part 2 consists of a more detailed methodology and some case studies. It is divided again into two parts, one for general buildings, and one for process plants:

If you are interested in a bit of history, the Business Interfaces Definition Guide was formerly known as the Process Industries Data Handover Guide. It was issued in two parts by EPISTLE in the late 1990's.

  • Part 1 consists of guidelines for establishing the requirements for the exchange of facilities information between engineering contractors and owner/operators.
  • Part 2 consists of guidelines for the types and formats of handover information.

ISO 15927-7 Template Specification

The diagrams on this page will give you a glimpse of the level of detail involved in developing ISO 15926 templates.

Template Methodology

This page is the beginning of several pages on methodology for developing templates.

More Reading about ISO 15926 is a Knowledge Base dedicated to the practical implementation of, and information about ISO 15926. It was started a few years ago and is a good source of background information. The site contains interesting tutorials for Part 4 (Dictionary) and Part 7 (Templates).

Infoweb ML

This website developed by one of the ISO 15926 developers, now retired. It contains some good background material, as well as links to current resources.

ISO Technical Committee 184/Subcommittee 4

TC184/SC4 is the body charged with oversight of ISO 15926.

ISO 15926 Infrastructure Technology

This section describes some of the technology that is being used to implement ISO 15926. As we have said many times, As we have said, the large majority of ISO 15926 users will not need to know this. But if you are curious on how things work, or if you have aspirations of joining an ISO 15926 implementation team, a basic requirement will be to at least understand the technology below. It's sort of like saying "If you want to be a mechanical engineer you will have to know how to use Excel."

RDF (Resource Description Framework)

If you dig deeper under the hood of ISO 15926 you will soon run into this term because it is the means of storing the Part 4 definitions.

Suggested Reading

If you really want to know more about RDF, here are a few places to start. Be warned: these are a bit daunting and are not for the feint of heart.

    A summary of the development of RDF. It includes more references in case you haven't had enough yet.

If the RDF material above put you to sleep don't say I didn't warn you. (I seem to remember using the word "daunting".) The first question to ask is whether or not you actually need to understand it. Most users of 15926 will not even have to know how to spell "RDF", let alone know what the initials stand for.

If you do want to persevere, a good place to start is to learn about the enabling technology. The abstract (remember that word?) RDF model can be implemented in a number of ways. The sections below describe the technology used by ISO 15926.

XML (Extensible Markup Language)

ISO 15926 uses Extensible Markup Language as a transport language. With XML, information is written in a manner that allows machines to know what the data values represent. Like HTML, XML uses tags bounded by "<" and ">", but the tags in XML are intended to describe what the data is, rather than how to render it on a computer screen. Thus, the appearance of an XML document is not generally important.

OWL (Web Ontology Language)

OWL is actually a family languages for creating ontologies. It is fundamental to the Semantic Web. OWL ontologies are usually expressed using RDF/XML syntax.

Suggested Reading


SPARQL, pronounced "sparkle", is a query language designed to be used with RDF triple stores. It's name is self referencing, "SPARQL Protocol and RDF Query Language". The ISO 15926 RDS/WIP uses SPARQL.

Suggested Reading


Gellish (originally derived from General Engineering Language) is a language in which information can be expressed in a manner that is computer readable. Gellish is one way to make the ISO 15926-7 templates.

Suggested Reading

Information Modeling Resources

Information modeling is the core of ISO 15926. Most people won't have to know anything about it, but a "lucky few" will get to go all the way down the rabbit hole.

For instance, elsewhere in this Primer we have used the metaphor of heavier than air flight. Most of us use flight by phoning our travel agent to book a trip. But a few people (they probably also describe themselves as the "lucky few") will study aeronautical engineering and learn why airplanes fly.

The barriers to digital interoperability are no longer hardware and technology, but rather information modeling. To truly develop ubiquitous digital interoperability, we will need robust information models that describe plant objects and the relationships between them, from their inception, through operation, to demobilization. This provides a distinct growth opportunity for plant engineers who understand that information about plant objects is as valuable as the objects themselves. When we have a large knowledge base, classified accurately, we will be able to exchange worthwhile information without human involvement in each transfer.

If you would like to become one of the "lucky few", here are some publications to get you started. The bad news is that the notation and terminology of information modeling can be daunting to newcomers. The author's suggestion is "Keep Reading!" Eventually it will start to make sense.

The Archives of Dr. Matthew West

Dr. West has a long history with Shell's Information Management department, and was a developer of parts of ISO 15926 before he retired. He has posted many of his publications on his website:

There is a wealth of information here for those introducing themselves to information modeling. Newcomers should start part way down the list and work back up to the top.

  • Replaceable Parts: A Four Dimensional Analysis (2003)
  • Developing Shell’s Downstream Data Model based on ISO 15926 (2006)
  • An Introduction to 4 Dimensionalism in Data Modelling (2007)
  • Developing Shell’s Downstream Data Model based on ISO 15926 (2007)
  • Levels of reality in ISO 15926 and Shell's Downstream Data Model (2007)
  • Roles: A Four-Dimensional Analysis (2008)
  • ISO 15926: Original purpose and possible future
  • Ontology Meets Business (2009)
  • 4 Dimensional Data Modelling: An Ontological Approach (2009)

If you would like to listen to one of Dr. West's lectures on ISO 15926, two of them are available from the archives of Onotolg, a community devoted to advancing the field of ontology.

Just over half way down the page are some links where you can download the PowerPoint presentation. Near the bottom is a link to the audio recording of the presentation.

IOHN Modeling Guide

The Integrated Operations in the High North (IOHN) project is a unique collaboration between the IT, defense and oil and gas industries. It is a proponent of ISO 15926 because ISO 15926 will enable more efficient and safer operation of remote sites. For their members they have developed a training course on ISO 15926 and an introduction to information modeling. They have recently released it to the public.

Bear in mind that this course will tell you about ISO 15926, but not how to use it.

Other Modeling Guide


Other Stuff

Templates. Difference Between:

  • Shortcut
  • Shorthand
  • Full

15916-7 Tutorial


What is a template?


  • prince03.pdf

FIATECH data modeling - "gory details" slide



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