The recent decade has seen a growing interest in applying modular construction in high-rise buildings. However, the manufacturing of modular buildings remains slow in making technical progress and the productivity in the factory is low. The production of modules is unique and complicated, as it incorporates both manufacturing features and construction trades. Whereas previous studies have proposed technologies and tools associated with design, operation, and optimization of module manufacturing systems, this field of research is currently fragmented.
In Manufacturing of Modular Buildings: A Literature Review, authors Yi Yang, Wei Pan, and Mi Pan provide a systematic review of existing academic perspectives and suggest future research directions to improve module manufacturing systems. The review explores critical research issues from five aspects: process and activities, organization and people, factory configuration, technology, and information and control system. Outlined suggestions for research opportunities include increased utilization of digital manufacturing, more exploration of strategies for the adoption of automated technologies, development of holistic and practical approaches to supporting DfMA methodology, well-defined information management systems through BIM. The findings should contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of the practices, challenges, and the state-of-the-art research in the manufacturing of modular buildings.