A new research initiative - AMSCI

Distributed Information and Automation Laboratory (DIAL) at the Institute for Manufacturing is pleased to introduce a new research project in liaison with the Engineering Design Centre (EDC), aimed at advanced manufacturing of smart products for homes, buildings and infrastructure. The University of Cambridge (DIAL and EDC), Laing O'Rourke and 20 consortium partners have been awarded a significant funding to support R&D, capital investment and training in advanced manufacturing capability for the construction industry supply chain. The programme is funded by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills and administered by the Birmingham Finance, as part of its Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI).


The programme is aimed at addressing the gap in housing supply by creating a new Laing O’Rourke off-site manufacturing facility for 10,000 new homes each year and helping deliver the UK Industrial Strategy for Construction, targeting 33% lower costs, 50% faster deliver, 50% lower emissions and 50% improvement in the import export trade gap.


AMSCI Research


The University of Cambridge is involved in the Integrated Design for Manufacturing and Assembly research work stream, the aim of which is to address the overarching question of ‘how the resilience of novel construction elements and their associated design and manufacturing processes can be improved?’ Central to achieving this aim is the inherent importance of project management decision making, and the cross -team and cross-company information flow, design approaches and tools necessary to support effective decisions.


The project will address the fragmented delivery approach of the construction industry by adopting the proven engineering tools and processes of the highly efficient automotive and aerospace industries. The project will deliver the understanding, tools and approaches required to support early design decision making in the manufacture of novel construction components in an advanced, highly automated, yet reconfigurable manufacturing plant. It will also assist the management of a stable supply chain for mechanical and electrical modules and integrated building and infrastructure assemblies.


The consortium partners include Laing O'Rourke, Airedale, Apex Cables, Armstrong, Arup, Beckhoff Automation, British Gypsum/Saint Gobain, BRE, Crane, Crown House Technologies, Expanded, Explore Manufacturing, Fulcro, Grundfos, Hamworthy Heating, Hoare Lea, Select, SIG, Thorn Lighting, University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre and WSP.


The research project is led by Duncan McFarlane (DIAL), John Clarkson (EDC), Tariq Masood and Alan Thorne from the University of Cambridge with Adam Locke and Steve Blake from Laing O’Rourke. For any further queries, please contact Tariq Masood tm487@cam.ac.uk

Date published

29 April 2015

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