DfMA for architecture

BIM plug-in targets DfMA for architecture

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ADAGE project designed to turn architects and building designers on to Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA)


A consortium of UK firms and universities is working on a BIM software plug-in that will automatically generate Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA) concept designs based on key parameters from a project brief, such as material choice or building use.

The Automatic DfMA Design Generator (ADAGE) plug-in will use a variety of technologies to achieve these goals, including Internet of Things (IoT), Blockchain, cloud computing, artificial intelligence algorithms (AIA) and big data analytics.

The DfMA for architecture project is being led by White Frog in partnership with Pollard Thomas Edwards (PTE), Intenttech, Leeds Beckett University and the University of Hertfordshire.

DfMA is widely acknowledged to offer improvements in cost, quality, construction safety and productivity, compared to traditional construction methods, but according to the ADAGE team currently less than 5% of designers are employing the approach.

The consortium has received £0.5m in public funding from Innovate UK, part of the national funding agency UK Research and Innovation. The team will develop the automated DfMA solution over a nine-month period, with the project to be shared with the wider industry in late 2021.

“We’re excited to partner with PTE, Intenttech, Leeds Beckett and Hertfordshire University to develop a solution which will benefit the industry as a whole; clients, designers, contractors and product manufacturers,” says Peter Routledge, managing director of White Frog and ADAGE Project Lead. “This new automated software tool is yet another step forward in driving construction efficiencies through the use of DfMA.”

“The wider adoption of DfMA is key to making construction more efficient and more sustainable and addressing the UK’s housing crisis,” Roger Holdsworth, Partner at PTE. “ADAGE will tackle the practical challenges faced by architects and designers on DfMA projects and develop new ways of working for the wider industry.”

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