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Transforming the building industry piece by piece

22 May 2015

The federal government is injecting $4 million into the development of advanced manufacturing of prefabricated housing.
The initiative recognises composite materials and technologies as a key enabler in the future for prefabricated housing in Australia.
The funding, awarded under the recently announced Australian Research Council’s (ARC) Industrial Transformation Research Programme, will establish the ARC Training Centre for Advanced Manufacturing of Prefabricated Housing led by the University of Melbourne’s Department of Infrastructure Engineering.
Professor Priyan Mendis said the Centre aims to unlock the potential growth of Australia’s prefabricated building industry by creating a co-operative training system between industry and universities.
“The Centre will enable the next generation of engineers and architects to apply advanced manufacturing ideas to prefabricated modular buildings,” he said.
“This emerging highly trained workforce driven by the needs of the customer will identify innovations in the use of advanced materials, design for manufacturing and assembly.”
Professor Mark Hargreaves, Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research Partnerships and External Relations) said the University of Melbourne is proud to lead the delivery of innovation and excellence through the ARC.
“The Centre will secure the Australian industry’s competitive advantage leading to local employment growth and increased exports of prefabricated products and services,” he said.
“Through this program, we will train emerging industry professionals, enable industry, with world-leading research capability, to develop and apply new materials, processes and technologies that will create products, processes and business models,” Professor Hargreaves said.
Ideas from this project will enable the prefabricated building industry to produce innovative and customer specific building products required in future markets.
The ARC Training Centre for Advanced Manufacturing of Prefabricated Housing is a highly collaborative venture involving four universities (The University of Melbourne, The University of Sydney, Curtin University of Technology and Monash University) and nine Partner Organisations (mostly companies).

Industry contacts:
Dr Tuan Ngo, Director of APTES Group, University of Melbourne E: dtngo[at]
Dr Bill Humphries, Composite Materials Research Coordinator, University of Melbourne E: william.humphries[at]


Media Contact Details::
Annie Rahilly (Media office) T: +61 3 9035 5380 / M: 0432 758 734 E: arahilly[at]