Prefabrication and Automated Processes in Residential Construction

2012-2017 | Doctoral Research

Jutta Albus

Prefabrication and Automated Processes in Residential Construction

The past twenty years have been marked by a continuous shortage of living spaces – particularly of affordable housing. This housing shortage has become an enormously pressing issue and is recognised as a problem requiring a solution at the level of economic policies. Regulating measures are necessary to remedy the housing shortage as a consequence of market trends; but it is also essential to develop new, adequate building solutions. This work assesses the extent to which automated processes are suited to residential building construction and evaluates building systems with a high degree of prefabrication. The research evaluates architectural, technical, ecological, and economical parameters of process approaches to determine potential strategies for the generation of housing. Its focus remains on practice. This research discusses a range of current prefabricated building systems, focusing on procedural and material efficiency, sustainable construction processes, and market relevance. It examines process strategies along with best-practice examples that represent development trends in order to provide a holistic overview of the current situation. It is important to establish a correlation between construction method and choice of materials in order to ensure coherence of architectural concept and building realisation. This is in turn important in order to develop sustainable, cost-effective housing systems that meet future standards of energy efficiency relating to construction. Prefabrication further increases fabrication and manufacturing quality of building components and improves waste prevention. In this context, systematised planning and optimised use of materials and systems significantly improve the recyclable properties of buildings and their parts.

ICD Institute for Computational Design and Construction

Scientific development: Jutta Albus

Supervision: Prof. Achim Menges

Contact information


Institute for Computational Design and Construction

University of Stuttgart, Keplerstraße 11, 70174 Stuttgart

To the top of the page