3D Modular Volumetric Construction

Introduction

Modular construction is a broad category including several techniques, each with distinct characteristics and applications. Among these is volumetric modular construction. Volumetric Modular Construction is defined as the stacking and joining of factory finished modules to create a substantially complete building. The modules are fitted with windows, doors, electrical and plumbing conduits in the factory. All five sides are cast during a single pour creating a single room or multiple rooms in one go. Modular buildings are built with the same materials used in traditional construction. The structures are 60% to 90% complete prior to transportation and assembly at the final building site. It is used primarily in developed countries like US, UK, Japan, European countries and Australia for its benefits.
 


History

The Crystal Palace, which was built for Britain's Great exhibition of 1951, remains one of the most famous examples of early modular construction. Designed in less than two weeks, it utilised light and inexpensive materials like iron, wood and glass. The first documented pre-fabricated house was constructed by a London carpenter for his son, who was moving from England to Australia. In 1908, Sears Roebuck and Co, a US company began selling home kits that contained all the materials needed to build a home. After the development of assembly line by Henry Ford in 1913, it became even more comfortable to manufacture modular homes at a lower price. The end of World War 2 when the need for homes increased tremendously, people once again started to opt for modular construction. 
3D Volumetric Construction Process 
In a single pour or a 3-D shape, the modules cast five sides to create a pre-designed shaped space or many spaces.
During the design process of the modules, the moulds are adjustable. In the mould, all openings like built-doors, windows, access points etc. are designed into the mould.
The openings are so accurate for Windows doors that they can be ordered directly from the drawings.
At the time of casting, the first fix MEP is installed, thereby reducing the time and labour needed for chasing the walls, repairing the ducts, and plastering the walls.
This technique is replicated, and the modules are installed side-by-side or atop one another. This causes the first module's roof to become the second module's floor since they are stacked vertically. This ability to fit together the modules reduces the time for building.



Advantages 

•Modular buildings can go up to 50 % faster than conventional ones, and there is no climate effect on the construction. In addition, modular construction eliminates material waste.
•The service life of a volumetric constructed building is comparable to that of conventional onsite constructions of similar high quality. With the off-site manufacturing buildings in the factory's regulated quality check setting, and a building of standardised and easily reproducible quality can be provided.
•The factory conditions, which reduce construction times, risks and delays make volumetric construction to be 40-60% cheaper than traditional onsite building.
•Since buildings are easily constructed in a factory, more of them can be produced in a shorter period. As a result, the efficiency is quite high, with less demand for workers. 
 

Conclusion

The modular architecture is continually changing as new technology encourages creativity. Factories are becoming more effective and using artificial intelligence and robotics to build modules quicker and more accurately than ever before. Although the industry is still going through growing pains, it is safe to say that for years to come, modular construction will play a role in commercial real estate.


WRITTEN BY:Mohit and Havisha








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