Theme 1: Production systems, modularity, design and optimization of delivery

The construction sector is transforming into an advanced manufacturing industry with digital engineering capabilities. To deliver value to infrastructure clients, we are working with industry partners to explore new approaches to the manufacture and assembly of buildings, for example through research projects with Laing O’Rourke.

This theme is led by Dr Marco Aurisicchio (Dyson School of Design Engineering) and Dr Panagiotis Angeloudis (Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering) and brings the latest systems design, network analysis, optimization and visualization methods to develop new knowledge across associated research projects.

In our interest in production systems, this Centre builds on foundational work by Professor Joan Woodward that established that firm-level success hinged on the relationship between the technology and production system and the organizational structure. Working in Imperial College London fifty years ago she was the first to distinguish and articulate different determinants of success in unit-production (small scale); mass-production (large scale) and continuous process organizations.

Design for Manufacturing and Assembly (DfMA) is an engineering and design approach that enables many of the activities that are traditionally done on the construction site to be undertaken in factory conditions, with larger components then delivered to site for installation.

Underpinning research themes under this stream include:

-          Analysis of the component structure of large infrastructure systems.
-          Systems engineering for offsite construction, assembly and integration.
-          Design of efficient, intermodal supply chains for DfMA construction.

There are opportunities to join us in taking forward this research agenda.