Modern Methods of Construction – Definitions

The following definition of MMC, or Modern Methods of Construction, has been provided by the MHCLG’s MMC Working Group, who seek to create a consistent way of approaching MMC. The Group uses a seven-category system as follows:

Category 1: Volumetric Modular – a structural building system. The components are delivered to site as three-dimensional modules, to be assembled there. These modules are usually already fitted out with everything internal, so there is not much to finish on site.

Category 2: Panelised – a structural building system. A flatpack of floor and wall panels is delivered on site, and assembled there. The rest of the building is completed on site either traditionally or combining other MMC solutions.

Category 3: Manufactured Structural Frames – a series of structural components (such as walls, beams etc.) which are pre-manufactured (for instance, SIPs, fabricated steel or pre-cast concrete), transported to site and then site assembled to form all or part of the building’s structure

Category 4: 3D Printing –3D printing is used to extrude part of a building such as concrete walls, or smaller structural or non-structural components using printers, which are located on- or off-site.  

Category 5: Non-Structural Assemblies – Items that form parts of buildings but not the actual structure. Think bathrooms or kitchens, cupboards, plant or distribution assemblies, roofing, facades etc.

Category 6: Traditional Material Innovation – building materials which have been improved so they don’t need so much labour. Large masonry blocks, modular ‘plug and play’ wiring looms, jointless flexible pipework and so on. It can also include traditional building items that have been tailored and marked up before delivery to site, to reduce on-site labour. This includes materials such as skirting boards, tiling, facades etc. 

Category 7: Site Process Improvements – these include methods used in conjunction with any or all of categories 1-6; equally on a traditional building development. It is characterised by its ability to reduce labour and supervision. According to the MHCLG MMC working group, examples include ‘temporary workface encapsulation to control watertightness or temperature, digital laser scanning of progress, photogrammetry, workforce GPS tools, site robotics, drones, autonomous plant & machinery, augmented reality and virtual reality wearables’.

Find out more about the categories above and download associated documents on the website link:

Modern methods building complex


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