BUILDING ENERGY RENOVATION THROUGH TIMBER PREFABRICATED MODULES

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Massmanufacturing TUM Figure 1In this research project, one of the goals is to conceive an efficient mass manufacturing and installation of prefabricated modules, by a combination of an integration of robotic, automation and augmented reality technologies.


The BERTIM project scopes the use of timber-frame based 2D and 3D prefabricated modules for the building refurbishment. The research project´s main goals have been pointed out as:
1.    "define a general methodology for the efficient mass (customized) manufacturing process of prefabricated modules in the timber manufacturing industry"
2.    "The methodology will allow installation time reductions of at least 30% compared to typical renovation"


This "general methodology" can´t be based on a single solution, it must be a System that approaches several Building renovation needs bespoke solutions all the time, and therefore it is necessary to conceive a highly customizable module that can be adapted to the majority of the targeted building typologies. Besides, the Off-site manufacturing process needs to be (re)adapted to this circumstances as well as the On-site installation process. Therefore, there can be defined three main Sub-systems:

  • Sub-system1: 2D and 3D modules configuration
  • Sub-system2: the manufacturing process
  • Sub-system3: the installation process


The final solution needs to be adaptable to various construction scenarios, existing manufacturing/installation and automation levels and investment capabilities. In that context, the manufacturing-installing process has to be co-adapted with the design and modularity of the prefabricated high-level components. The achieved system needs to be:
1.    Highly Modular system. The system is organized in solution-kits that cover the three main Sub-systems: the module, the manufacturing process and the installation. Each solution-kit can be implemented independently within each of the Sub-systems.
2.    Integrates the product, manufacturing and installation.
3.    Linked processes suppliers and other works such as building preparation, data acquisition, BIM…  
4.    Common platform for all BERTIM 2D and 3D modules.
5.    Adaptable to various manufacturers. Degrees of automation, facilities, investment
6.    Product adaptable to various buildings, defined within the range


In this phase of the research, we have gathered the main method or design frame for achieving the goal of the project. The Axiomatic Design approach has been applied and the complexity of the overall process has been handled.

Author: Kepa Iturralde TUM

 Massmanufacturing TUM Figure 1 
 Figure 1: Development of the work-station modular kit
Massmanufacturing TUM Figure 2  Massmanufacturing TUM Figure 3
Figure 2: Installation of modules using a cable robot

 Figure 3: Installation of modules by a vertical bridge crane

Examples: Linner, Iturralde, br2 TUM

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