2. Previous Research Studies on the Benefits
2.1. Cost and Time
2.2. Other Benefits
3. Structural Performance of Prefabricated Building Systems
3.1. Fire Resistance and Acoustic Performance
3.2. Performance of the Structure under Earth Quake and Wind Load
4. Constraints, Challenges and Future Research
- The limitations of transportation, regulations, and special traffic control in the construction area are the main factors to be considered in transportation planning. Therefore, more case studies are needed to evaluate project planning, scheduling, and the cost of small- and large-scale projects.
- More research and case studies are needed to develop and include the design specifications and recommendation for prefabricated structures according to Australian design standards.
- Previous study has highlighted that most often, structural performance of prefabricated building systems is assessed by individual component testing and numerical models. There could be an inherent redundancy in the structural behaviour when the structural response between individual components and the whole structure are compared. Therefore, numerical modelling, hybrid simulations and full-scale tests need to be conducted on prefabricated whole buildings to evaluate the structural responses and performance under fire, wind and earthquake loads.
- A lack of awareness on the performance, benefits, and affordability design and techniques provided by the prefabricated systems is a major challenge for the marketing of prefabricated building construction in Australia. This could have been achieved through social and economic research. This research should focus on the following activities, such as questionnaires, workshops, conferences and media interviews.
- Although a great deal of previous academic research has proven the sustainability aspects of prefabricated construction, this knowledge needs to be more effectively communicated to the general public. This needs to be accompanied by real case studies on public infrastructure projects where the general public benefits from the performance of prefabricated structures.
- The skills and knowledge required for prefabrication design and construction practices in Australia need to be developed and strengthened through relevant educational courses, workshops, conferences and vocational training. Also, universities, TAFE and vocational education institutes should consider including prefabrication design and construction in their courses. This will increase the professional skills and knowledge required for the design and construction practices, as well as increasing their productivity.
- The government and building industry need to encourage the building of some trademark structures similar to the ‘Little Hero’ low-rise apartment building in Melbourne. This will increase the market demand and development of prefabricated building systems in Australia.
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