The Language of Modular Construction: Understanding the Terms

Learn about the different terms used in modular construction and how they differ from traditional construction methods. Gain a better understanding of this growing industry.

The Language of Modular Construction: Understanding the Terms

When it comes to modular construction, there are a lot of terms that are used interchangeably, such as “off-site construction” and “prefabrication”. These terms encompass a variety of different approaches and systems, from individual elements that are joined together using standard connections and interfaces to three-dimensional volumetric units with complete accessories. Prefabricated construction involves building components off-site in a specialized facility, while external construction is simply another term for prefabrication. On the other hand, modular construction involves building large modules off-site that are designed to be joined together. This is in contrast to traditional construction, which is the most common form of construction where most of the work is done on site.

Another term that is sometimes used in the industry is pole construction, which refers to traditional construction with wooden or metal structures. In practice, it is synonymous with traditional construction. Kit construction is another term that is often used in the world of modular construction. This involves pre-cut parts that require significant assembly, but with minimal waste, on site. Temporary buildings are those that can be easily moved or dismantled and reassembled elsewhere.

Panelized construction is a more efficient form of construction in which walls, floors, and other flat components arrive in large sections that can be quickly placed in place. And finally, there is volumetric modular construction, which is the most complete form of modular construction with a minimum of on-site assembly. To help illustrate the distinction between prefab and modular kits, think of IKEA as a supplier of prefab kit furniture. Like many industries, modular construction has its own language, processes, and terms, which can be confusing to some people who aren't familiar with them. The terms “frame” or “framing” usually refer to the schematic structure of a building, but they can also describe the supporting structures of modular buildings.

A term largely interchangeable with modern construction methods, referring to the part of the construction process that takes place outside the construction site. Prefabrication is not limited to modular modules and buildings, but is applied to a wider variety of products. Models are created that contain not only the geometry of the building, but also contain a lot of data in terms of relationships, physical attributes, time, costs and quantities. The generally accepted definition for the volumetric modular model is that more than 60% of the construction is completed off-site. Spaces can be designed to be relocated during their useful life, something exclusive to modular units, no matter how large or small they Sean.

A term that is loosely used for elements that are manufactured off-site and then assembled with other elements to build an entire structure or building. Modular construction is a method of executing projects in which buildings are subdivided into smaller sections, called modules, that can be created independently and then joined together to create a structure. With more than 40 years of experience, Triumph Modular has worked with homeowners, architects and engineers to improve the design and performance of temporary and permanent commercial building spaces. The modules are individual sections of a modular building with enclosed functional spaces that can be joined with other modules to form a complete modular building.