Modular Design Concepts and Associated Cost Savings

By March 11, 2011Techniques

Modular design concepts are not new, and have been used for numerous years in countless different venues. The key goals are to reduce costs by increasing transportation efficiencies and decreasing construction times.

NASA uses modular design concepts on their space craft to reduce transportation costs as these can rise quickly as payload increases. Therefore, NASA creates pieces of the whole craft on earth before launching the craft into orbit and then constructing it in space.

Hover barges use modular design for the same reason. Hover barges are hover crafts used to carry supplies to remote locations. A hover barge, like a ship, is too large as a whole unit to be shipped efficiently to a new location. However, unlike a ship, a hover barge cannot deliver itself to a new location. This scenario is perfect for modular design as it allows for the unit to be built and delivered in smaller pieces and reconstructed on site.

Computers send data to each other in modules because the transportation lanes are too small for a bulk transfer. Again, modular design techniques are used to reduce costs. In this instance maintaining functionality with limits on less expensive hardware.

A production line is one more utility that many modern companies use and goes hand in hand with modular design techniques. A production line allows efficiency in construction or refinement of a product by breaking the process down into smaller repetitive tasks. Auto manufacturers to doughnut makers use this tool and overall it can reduce unit costs significantly.

The construction industry began using modular design almost one hundred years ago, but it finally grew in popularity in the housing industry during the 1950s. For a long time, there has been a negative connotation used in describing or conversing about modular homes and buildings. This notably comes from the fact that many of these facilities were developed quickly and cheaply without much focus on quality. The fact remains however, that the modular design of a building on a production line can be coupled with quality craftsmanship, while still coming in under time and under budget as opposed to traditional construction.

It is simply the same difference between auto manufacturers. Most manufacturers use the same design techniques, but not all of them have the same aptitude for quality. This is the shining difference.

Icon Construction is the “Mercades Benz” of the modular construction world. Icon utilizes modular design techniques and production line concepts while placing a strong focus on craftsmanship. Icon believes that modular buildings can have the absolute best quality and still be reasonably priced. Our Icon team has proven time and time again that the quality of our buildings cannot be beaten.

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