This thesis aims to develop advanced timber-based panelised prefabrication in an impactful manner. The research approach involved the establishment of close collaborative industry-partnerships which were then leveraged to best satisfy the critical needs faced in industry, resulting in targeted in-depth advancements across a range of areas. Five core areas for detailed advancement were identified, namely: manufacturing processes, waterproofing, wall systems, design methods (including optimal configuration selection) and floor systems. Within each core area, the pressing limitations of most immediate commercial need were investigated and addressed in detail. Consequently, the original contributions to knowledge are as follows:
- Full evaluation and assessment of advanced automated manufacturing technologies and processes available for complete timber-based panelised systems;
- Development and successful commercial adoption of a purpose specific prefabricated panel to panel waterproofing solution to replace on-site work;
- Development and implementation of a significantly more material and cost-efficient panelised timber-based wall system for mid-rise buildings, namely stiffened engineering timber walls with post-tensioning;
- Corresponding mathematical modelling via the computationally efficient exact finite strip method based upon the Wittrick-Williams algorithm with appropriate orthotropic material models and strength limits;
- Development of associated design curves, configuration specific post-tensioned strength reduction factors and optimal configuration selection methods;
- Development of a panelised stressed-skin timber floor system through reductive-design with increasing material efficiency whilst also reducing the number of manufacturing processes required for competitive commercial adoption.
As a result, this development of knowledge, process and product innovations, is spurring and enabling the growth of research in, and industry adoption of, advanced timber-based panelised prefabrication.