The Advantages of Prefabrication for AEC

By Patrick

This post is part of a series of articles found in “Prefabrication and Industrialized Construction,” a Dassault Systèmes whitepaper.


Where prefabrication is possible, a number of benefits make these systems attractive to building owners.

Prefabricated systems can lead to reduced labor costs, safer projects, and fewer delays—and often results in an overall higher quality product than can be achieved with traditional stick-built projects.

 

Workers construct a modular structure in a manufacturing facility. ©iStock.com/EdStock

Workers construct a modular structure in a manufacturing facility. ©iStock.com/EdStock

 

Reduced Labor Costs

Prefabricated systems simplify the installation process, requiring fewer workers onsite to complete a task.

Because the most complex components are assembled in a specialized manufacturing environment, prefabrication reduces the need for skilled laborers. Skilled trade people need only be used onsite for the final connection of systems, such as wiring or ductwork.

Improved Safety

Not only does prefabrication lower labor costs, but by shortening the amount of time spent onsite, laborers are able to get in and out more safely.

Tweet: #Prefab shortens the time spent onsite so laborers are able to get in & out more safely. @3DSAEC #AECClick to tweet: “#Prefab shortens the time spent onsite
so laborers are able to get in & out more safely.”

Laborers working in a controlled factory environment don’t have to brave jobsite hazards such as ice or winter chills, unsafe access to electricity, or dangerous heights. A factory-controlled environment also makes it possible to supply components and equipment where the worker needs it, rather than having workers moving parts through an active jobsite.

Minimized Delays

Sequencing for stick-built projects follows a typical pattern: each trade moves in to complete its portion of the building once the previous trade has completed its work. That means an unexpected delay in ductwork installation can push back wall framing, which then moves the schedule for the electricians who are already working around another project, and so on.

Prefabrication minimizes the need for coordination among subcontractors because electrical, ductwork, and other necessary components are installed within the wall as it’s being fabricated, requiring minimal onsite coordination.

What’s more, because the majority of work is done inside, there is no need for delays due to weather, and shift work can be performed around the clock.

Improved Quality of Finished Project

Prefabrication work is typically completed in a specialized, centralized factory. Suppliers might use a permanent location or a temporary warehouse close to the jobsite to reduce the logistics of transporting finished products.

A major advantage of working in this enclosed environment is that it allows for greater quality control than is possible on a typical jobsite. Producing these complex systems in a manufacturing environment keeps jobsite dust, dirt, and other contaminants out of sensitive systems. It allows for more oversight of each step of the process.

Once completed systems arrive onsite, surveying devices such as transits help installers to precisely locate where each component needs to be installed. Expert tradesmen must simply connect the final pieces.

Expanding Benefits

While not every project—or every system within a project—may be able to take advantage of prefabrication, today’s new technology allows even highly custom systems to take advantage of these benefits to workers and building owners.

Tweet: Advantages of #Prefab for #AEC @3DSAEC Click to tweet this article:
“Advantages of Prefab for AEC”

Patrick Mays, Expert Business Experience Consultant AEC at Dassault SystèmesPatrick Mays, AIA

With over 30 years of AEC experience, Mr. Mays is part of the core team driving the AEC industry strategy at Dassault Systèmes. Mr. Mays was the General Manager for North America at Graphisoft, and served as CIO at NBBJ Architects where he led the firm’s transition to BIM in the 1990s.

 


Whitepaper: Prefabrication and industrialized construction

Related Resources

Lean Construction Industry Solution Experience by Dassault Systèmes

Download the full whitepaper: Prefabrication and Industrialized Construction

[INFOGRAPHIC] Deconstructing Lean Construction

By Akio

The adoption of Lean construction by the AEC industry, and Lean drivers, benefits, and challenges are illustrated in this Dassault Systèmes infographic.

Given the biggest challenge to implementing Lean construction is a lack of awareness, please share this infographic with your network:


Click to TweetClick to Tweet: “[INFOGRAPHIC]
Deconstructing #LeanConstruction”

Source data comes from the Lean Construction SmartMarket Report published by McGraw Hill Construction (now Dodge Data & Analytics).

To embed this infographic on your site or blog please use the following code:

<iframe src=”//www.slideshare.net/slideshow/embed_code/45008216″ width=”477″ height=”510″ frameborder=”0″ marginwidth=”0″ marginheight=”0″ scrolling=”no” style=”border:1px solid #CCC; border-width:1px; margin-bottom:5px; max-width: 100%;” allowfullscreen> </iframe> <div style=”margin-bottom:5px”> <strong> <a href=”//www.slideshare.net/DassaultSystemes/aec-leanconstruction” title=”Deconstructing Lean Construction” target=”_blank”>Deconstructing Lean Construction</a> </strong> from <strong><a href=”//www.slideshare.net/DassaultSystemes” target=”_blank”>Dassault Systemes</a></strong> </div>

Related Resources

Lean Construction Industry Solution Experience

Lean Construction SmartMarket Report

BIM in Façade Design: Real World Examples

By Akio

The following post is an excerpt from Technological Changes Brought by BIM to Façade Design.

Phoenix International Media Center

Phoenix International Media Center, located at the southwest corner of Beijing Chaoyang Park, with gross floor area of 65,000 square meters and building height of 55 meters, was designed by Beijing Institute of Architectural Design.

The overall design logic is to wrap the main, independently-maintainable space with an ecologically-functional shell, rendering a building-in-building form. There is some interesting shared and public space in between, so as to meet the purpose of public involvement and experience and environmental protection.

In addition to media office and studio production facilities, there is also lots of interactive experience space open to the public, so as to reflect the unique open business concept of Phoenix Media.

To show the uniqueness, culture, and rationality of technology and cost, the architects creatively proposed for the outer surface of the center a flake-type, unit-combined façade fabrication of which either two of the 5,180 units are different from each other.

1Phoenix International Media Center

2

Barclays Center

Barclays Center, covering an area of 675,000 feet, designed by SHoP Architects, reflects the balance between unique shape and good performance.

Tweet: @barclayscenter, by @SC_SHoP_, reflects the balance of unique shape & good performance. #AEC @3DSAEC @Dassault3DS http://ctt.ec/fL1_E +Click to tweet: “Barclays Center, by SHoP Architects,
reflects the balance of unique shape & good performance.”

Its complex, weather-resistant steel and glass façade design, a main part of arena design, was fulfilled by SHoP Construction (SC) cooperating with a façade contractor.

To ensure the “grille” division of the weather-resistant steel can accurately show the building shape, SC introduced an integrated construction process directly oriented to assembly and applied digital fabrication technology to assemble and deliver 900 large unit panels by sequence, which consisted of 12,000 weather-resistant steel grilles of different sizes.

3Barclays Center

4

5

Tweet: #BIM in #Façade Design: Real World Examples #AEC @3DSAEC @Dassault3DS @SC_SHoP_ http://ctt.ec/9904T+Click to tweet this article:
“Examples of #BIM in Façade Design #AEC”


paper logoExcerpted from Technological Changes Brought by BIM to Façade Design

To read more, download the full whitepaper

Learn about the Dassault Systèmes Industry Solution Experience Façade Design for Fabrication

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