25 Oct 2023 – The Research Group of Construction Quality and Maintenance (CQM) held an industrial seminar titled Digital Construction and Modern Methods of Construction in conjunction with Razak Research Week (RRW2023) by Faculty Technology and Informatics Razak. We had the pleasure of having three excellent speakers: Professor Zeeshan Aziz from the University of Salford, who provided perspective on digital construction in the UK and Europe; Mrs. Maziah, CEO of DK Composite Sdn. Bhd., a world-class composite company that has fabricated and built many prestigious domes in Malaysia and other countries; and Mrs. Lim Hui Yan, Executive Director of Gamuda IBS Sdn. Bhd., who provided insight on off-site construction from a Malaysian perspective. This seminar encompass significant discussions on technology robotics and digital construction to promote sustainability and excellence within the construction industry. We believe the knowledge shared during the seminar significantly contribute to the growth and quality of the construction industry and also a platform to engage with industry experts, gain valuable insights, and collaborate with peers in the construction domain.
On the next day, the CQM had a technical visit to a state-of-the-art prefabricated concrete factory, Gamuda IBS Sdn. Bhd. in Banting, Selangor which one of leading prefabricated company in Malaysia to unveiled the future of building design and efficiency of modern construction methods. Together with the visit is our research collaborator Professor Zeeshan Aziz, from University of Salford, UK, Associate Prof. Dr. Nguyen The Quan and Mr. Nguyen Dinh Phong, lecturers from Hanoi University of Civil Engineering, Vietnam and Dr. Muhammad Adeel Arshad from University of Engineering and Technology Peshawar Pakistan gathered to witness a first-hand potential of modern method construction in Malaysia. The 2 hours of visit was received a warm welcome from Mr. Ratchanon Suriyat, General Manager received full briefing from Mr. Abang Ibrahim accompanied by Mr. Zahir Ishak, both as Senior Managers. With full explanation from Mr. Abang Ibrahim we went through the 66-acre factory consist of a complete process of prefabricated panel and modular construction.
The visit showcased a cutting-edge prefabricated structure that seamlessly blends architectural aesthetics with engineering precision. Prefabrication, or off-site construction, involves assembling building components using robotics manufacturing process and digital tools in a controlled environment before transporting them to the construction site for rapid installation. This method has gained traction for its ability to reduce construction time significantly and costs with minimum environmental impact.
Attendees marvelled at the speed with which the prefabricated structure took shape, underscoring the efficiency gains achievable through this construction method. The process demonstrated how various components, from wall panels to entire room modules and bathrooms, were manufactured with precision and assembled on-site in a fraction of the time traditionally required for conventional construction.
This visit also highlighted the sustainability aspects of prefabricated structures. With reduced construction waste, improved energy efficiency, and the ability to incorporate eco-friendly materials, prefabrication aligns with the growing demand for sustainable building practices. Industry experts emphasized the positive environmental impact that widespread adoption of prefabrication could have on the construction sector.
As the world grapples with the need for more sustainable and efficient building practices, prefabrication emerges as a promising solution that could redefine the future landscape of architecture and construction. The visit end with a fruitful discussion among attendees the potential implications for the construction industry, future applications and implications on changes in project management, workforce training, and the need for new regulations to accommodate this evolving approach to building.