Additive Manufacturing in Off-Site Construction: Review and Future Directions

Buildings (Basel). 2022 Jan 6;12(1):53. doi: 10.3390/buildings12010053. eCollection 2022 Jan.


Additive manufacturing (AM) is one of the pillars of Industry 4.0 to attain a circular economy. The process involves a layer-by-layer deposition of material from a computer-aided-design (CAD) model to form complex shapes. Fast prototyping and waste minimization are the main benefits of employing such a technique. AM technology is presently revolutionizing various industries such as electronics, biomedical, defense, and aerospace. Such technology can be complemented with standardized frameworks to attract industrial acceptance, such as in the construction industry. Off-site construction has the potential to improve construction efficiency by adopting AM. In this paper, the types of additive manufacturing processes were reviewed, with emphasis on applications in off-site construction. This information was complemented with a discussion on the types and mechanical properties of materials that can be produced using AM techniques, particularly metallic components. Strategies to assess cost and material considerations such as Production line Breakdown Structure (PBS) and Value Stream Mapping are highlighted. In addition, a comprehensive approach that evaluates the entire life cycle of the component was suggested when comparing AM techniques and conventional manufacturing options.

PMID:35911632 | PMC:PMC9015660 | DOI:10.3390/buildings12010053


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