The Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction (MRAC) seeks to train a new generation of interdisciplinary professionals who are capable of facing our growing need for a more sustainable and optimised construction eco-system. The Master is focused on the emerging design and market opportunities arising from novel robotic and advanced manufacturing systems.
Through a mixture of seminars, workshops and studio projects, the master programme challenges the traditional processes in the Construction Sector. It investigates how advances in robotics and digital fabrication tools change the way we build and develop processes and design tools for such new production methods.
Applications are now open for the academic year 2023-24!
MRAC 01 + 3DPA
|Degree||Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction accredited by School of Professional and Executive Development at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia – European Higher Education Area (EHEA)||Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction + Postgraduate Diploma in 3D Printing Architecture. Both accredited by School of Professional and Executive Development at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia – European Higher Education Area (EHEA)||Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction – YEAR 02 Research Thesis accredited by School of Professional and Executive Development at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia – European Higher Education Area (EHEA).|
|Edition||5th edition||11th edition||2nd edition|
|Credits||75 ECTS||120 ECTS||120 ECTS|
|Duration||9 Months – From October 2022 to June 2023 // Full Time
9 + 9 months – From October 2022 to June 2024 // Part Time
|15 Months – From October 2022 to February 2024 // Full Time||18 Months – From October 2022 to June 2024 // Full Time|
|Tuition Fee||Non-EU: 18.750€
|Admission||Based on student profile evaluation||Based on student profile evaluation||Based on student profile evaluation|
|Degree||Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction accredited by School of Professional and Executive Development at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia – European Higher Education Area (EHEA)|
|Duration||9 Months – From October 2021 to June 2022 // Full Time
9 + 9 months – From October 2021 to June 2023 // Part Time
|Tuition Fee||Non-EU: 18.750€
|Admission||Based on student profile evaluation|
MRAC 01 + OTF
|Degree||Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction + Postgraduate Diploma in Open Thesis Fabrication. Both accredited by School of Professional and Executive Development at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia – European Higher Education Area (EHEA)|
|Duration||15 Months – From October 2021 to February 2023 // Full Time|
|Tuition Fee||Non-EU: 25.500€
|Admission||Based on student profile evaluation|
|Degree||Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction – YEAR 02 Research Thesis accredited by School of Professional and Executive Development at the Polytechnic University of Catalonia – European Higher Education Area (EHEA).|
|Duration||18 Months – From October 2021 to June 2023 // Full Time|
|Tuition Fee||Non-EU: 30.400€
|Admission||Based on student profile evaluation|
CONTEXT & AGENDA
The construction sector is currently faced with a need for change. A new approach towards how our environment is built must be taken. Growing cities are challenging the sector to find better ways to build more and at a lower cost. Furthermore, the limited resources that we have on this planet push us towards a more sustainable way of building, inhabiting, and reusing our constructions. On top of this, an aberration from mass-produced cities indicates a need for a more holistic design, integrating the various needs and desires of the inhabitants.
In addition to this, the construction sector has not yet taken advantage of the digital revolution that is happening in other manufacturing sectors, such as in the automobile and aerospatial engineering industries. While studies predict that Automation, Robotics, and AI will possibly increase productivity by 60% in the construction sector, they also open new opportunities for design and for increased building performance.
In this context, IAAC proposes a new interdisciplinary programme where prospective students can expect to learn about the state of the art in Robotics and Advanced Manufacturing technologies, as well as theory and practical tools of computational design and artificial intelligence. Master candidates will become fluent in the use of these technologies through continuous hands-on experiments, methodology, and a series of workshops and pilot projects with research and industry partners.
The Master Programme in Robotics and Advanced Construction is an innovative educational format that offers interdisciplinary skills and understanding through a series of class seminars that are put into practice through hands-on workshops. IAAC gives students the opportunity to create individual studio agendas and develop Pilot Thesis Projects based on the knowledge acquired during the seminars and workshops split into 3 Modules. In this way, IAAC puts together an experimental learning environment for the training of professionals with both theoretical and practical responses to the increasing complexity of the construction sector.
The master offers a flexible structure to allow both full time or part-time dedication to the master. Full-time students can complete the programme in 1 academic year (October to July) while part-time students can complete it in 2 academic years. Monthly encounters with professionals and researchers are condensed into one week of seminar lectures and hands-on workshops per month and are combined with online classes and video conference reviews to offer the possibility for students to study from abroad with part-time jobs. Full-time students will have the possibility to develop their own studio and thesis project during the 3 remaining weeks of each month, while part-time students can extend their study over 2 years to complete the studio and thesis project and acquire the master degree.
Students will be part of a highly international group, including faculty members, researchers and lecturers from all over the world, this environment will encourage them to develop collective decision-making processes and materialise their project ideas.
The Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction offers students the possibility of pursuing the programme in 4 different modalities:
– MRAC 01 – 9 month full time, 75 ECTS
– MRAC 01 PT – 18 month part-time , 75 ECTS
– MRAC 01 + 3DPA – 15month full time, 120 ECTS
– MRAC 02 – 18 month full time, 120 ECTS
The MRAC programme comprises the following elements:
T. – THEORY SEMINARS
S. – SOFTWARE SEMINARS
H. – HARDWARE SEMINARS
W. – WORKSHOPS
R. – RESEARCH AND DESIGN STUDIOS
V. – VISITS
MRAC 01 First year
Term 1 – Materialising with Machines
Advances in File to Factory workflow allows for precise and complex constructions. In this new paradigm, the architecture will be mass customised, constructive logic will be encoded, new materials will be introduced and materiality will be programmed.
During this first term, students will explore the possibilities being already offered by digital fabrication and computational design to gain control over the entire process of materialisation from digital to physical, from the human intention to the robot execution. A special focus will be given on the challenges and opportunities raised by Robotic and Additive Manufacturing for construction.
- S.1 – Software 1 : Algorithmic Design
- H.1 – Hardware 1 : Robotic Actuators
- T.1 – Theory 1 : Materialising with Machines
- R.1 – Research Studio 1 : Robotic Craft
- W1.1 – Workshop 1.1 : Additive Manufacturing
- W1.2 – Workshop 1.2 : Subtractive Manufacturing
Term 2 – Scanning and Learning machines
Advances in data collection (sensors, drones, …) and analysis (optimisation algorithm, AI, …) allows for better integration of the construction specific challenges such as site monitoring and adaptability, heterogeneous materials, inventory management, assembly tolerances, changing climate conditions and team coordination.
During the second semester, students will integrate increasing amounts of data in their workflow, using robotic sensing and digital simulation to get new information of the construction process. Physical computing and analytics will help drive new decision making processes including iterative logics, computational optimisation and artificial intelligence.
- S.2 – Software 2 : Robotic Control
- H.2 – Hardware 2 : Robotic Sensors
- T.2 – Theory 2 : Scanning and Learning Machines
- R.2 – Research Studio 2 : Robotic Sensing
- W2.1 – Workshop 2.1 : 3d Scanning in Construction
- W2.2 – Workshop 2.2 : Adaptive Fabrication
Term 3 – Human-Machine collaboration
Advances in Human-Machine Interactions and mixed realities allows for a seamless collaboration between humans and robots in factory and construction sites, taking advantages of the best of both virtual and real world.
During the third semester, students will extend their skills and perspectives towards new devices and strategies that combine existing manual constructive methods with the digital and robotic ones. This new digital craftsmanship in factories and construction sites will be the scenario students will use to explore the potential of collaborative robots and Augmented Reality for the construction sector.
- S.3 – Software 3 : Machine Learning
- H.3 – Hardware 3 : Robotic Interaction
- T : Theory 3 : Human – Machine collaboration
- R.3 – Research Studio 3 : Final Project
- W3.1 – Workshop 3.1 : Collaborative Robotics
- W3.2 – Workshop 3.2 : Swarm Robotics
MRAC 01 Part time modality
IAAC offers students the possibility of pursuing this Master’s degree through both full-time and part-time modalities. While the full time modality consists of a 9 months program along the course of one academic year, the part time modality consists of a 9 + 9 months program along the course of two academic years.
The MRAC part time format has been designed for all those interested students and professionals with part time jobs from Spain or abroad, to attend the courses. The format combines online teaching content and remote reviews with intensive weeks to allow students to manage their work/study balance easily, with a required presence of only one week per month in Barcelona, and one day per week required availability for remote reviews. In detail the two year format unfolds as follows:
- During the first academic year of the MRAC 01 part time modality, Seminars will be arranged in remote for the students not to miss any classes and reviews, while physical attendance will be required in IAAC 1 week every month for the following content: one kick off intensive seminar week, happening the first week of each term; two intensive hands-on workshops lasting one week each, happening at the beginning and closing of each term.
- During the second academic year of the MRAC 01 part time modality, students will focus on their research project to be developed in the MRAC Studio of each term, with online classes and reviews. Every month, the students will come to IAAC for one week to produce their prototypes and to take part in scheduled visits at renewed industry and research centers.
MRAC 01 + 3DPA
MRAC 01 First year + 3DPA: 3D printing Architecture
The Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction first year can be combined with the complementary program 3DPA: 3D printing Architecture. This allows students to apply the knowledge learnt into this unique applied research program center into the revolutionising technology of additive manufacturing for the construction of sustainable architecture. For more information, please see the dedicated page about the 3DPA program: https://iaac.net/educational-programmes/applied-research-programmes/otf-3d-printing-architecture/
MRAC 02 Second year – Research Thesis
Targeted towards students’ future career in Academia, Start-up or Industry, the second year of the Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction offers the occasion to develop a thesis project with the support of IAAC infrastructure, experts and network, with the goal to maximise its impact on our society.
Students can choose to work either individually or in a group, and can propose their own topic and collaborative company, or choose from the one proposed by IAAC and its strong partners. The development of the project will be supported by advanced seminars in Technology, Theory and Business to bring the proposal state of the art research that can really impact the construction industry. To this end, students will collaborate with one specific industry / academia or incubator to develop their project, with a series of internship immersion in the collaborative company as well as review and support directly on the thesis project.
In parallel to the development of the Thesis Project Studio, the second year of the Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction offers a series of seminars enhancing both the theoretical, practical and digital skills of the students. Students will also have the occasion to join cross-disciplinary workshops to build large prototypes and installations.
- R.4 – Research Thesis
- Academy track
- Startup track
- Industry track
- RS.1 – Research Support 1 : Economics of Sustainability & Impact/LCA
- RS.2 – Research Support 2 : Advanced Technology – specific to the project
- T.4.1 – Theory 1 : Research Methods
- T.4.2 – Theory 2 : Business Innovation
- T.4.3 – Theory 3 : Market for Industry Research
- W.5 – Workshop 5 : Cross-Disciplinary Project
- W.5 – Workshop 6 : Cross-Disciplinary Prototype
- I > Internship at collaborative Industry / Academia / Incubator
The Master is being developed in close collaboration with industrial partners. Detailed list of partners to be announced.
Industry Partner collaboration within previous IAAC masters editions includes:
IAAC is a leading education and research centre on Robotics and Future Constructions. Some of the latest projects of IAAC following parts of the agenda of the MRAC can be found below.
Notes: This programme is subject to change according to technology updates and real case studies by industry partners.
Aldo Sollazzo is an architect and researcher, an expert in computational design and digital fabrication. Master in Architectonic Design in 2007, Master in Advanced Architecture at IAAC in 2012, Fab Academy diploma in 2014 in the Fab Lab Barcelona, Aldo is currently involved in several projects running in parallel. Since 2011, he is the manager of Noumena, a firm embracing data-driven design, investigating between the boundaries of new digital paradigms and design strategies applied to architecture, robotics and fabrication, through a hands-on and experimental approach.
He is also the founder of Fab Lab Frosinone and Director of Reshape, a digital platform promoting interdisciplinary and collaborative approach, towards the definition of new cutting-edge practices and disruptive ideas in the field of wearable tech and fashion design. Since 2015 he is faculty at IAAC, covering the positions of Director of IAAC Global Summer School, co-Director of the new Master of Robotics and Advanced Construction, and instructor of digital tools.
He is one of the Supernode of Fab Academy, the educational platform founded by Neil Gershenfeld from the MIT’s Center of Bits and Atoms. For the same programme, he is also a local coordinator for Fab Academy Paris.
Alexandre Dubor is an architect and researcher combining new technologies in an attempt to improve how we build and live in our cities. He holds a Master degree of Architecture & Engineering from EAVT & ENPC (France) and a Master Degree in Advanced Architecture from IAAC (Spain), with a specialization in robotic fabrication and large-scale additive manufacturing (FabBot 3.0).
He holds as well a French architectural licence (HMONP) and has worked in various architectural offices from competition stage to delivery (Libeskind, Atenastudio, iDonati, AREP) while exploring the potential of scripting and coding in a separate practice (Collectif277). Since 2012, he is working at IAAC as an expert in digital and robotic fabrication. He is now leading the Open Thesis Fabrication programme as well as the Master in Robotic and Advanced Construction at IAAC.
Together with IAAC staff, students and industrial partners, he is investigating how new advances in material, digital fabrication and computational design could lead to a better construction ecosystem, towards a more efficient, affordable, sustainable and personalised built environment.
The Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction (MRAC) is aimed at engineers, designers, architects and craftsmen willing to push the boundaries of robotics and advanced manufacturing. An undergraduate degree in a field related to the above disciplines will be required.
Once successfully finished the master programme, IAAC students will join the IAAC Alumni Community. This is an active and dynamic network of visionary professionals spread around the world, promoting the principles and applications of Advanced Architecture, exploring new academic and research initiatives, leading award-winning practices or successful start-ups and working for internationally acclaimed firms and institutions.
The aim of IAAC is to form graduates who, after the completion of the programme, will be able to develop their acquired skills in a diversity of professional environments, related to the transformation and management of the construction sector.
WHAT YOU WILL LEARN
Students will learn to manipulate and integrate robotics and advanced manufacturing process; create and generate a parametric design for mass customisation in the connected industry 4.0; integrate computer vision and sensor feedback for complex material systems and fabrication processes; explore the potential of computational optimisation, artificial intelligence and machine learning, understand and integrated the potential of autonomous robot systems, develop new applications of augmented reality and connected mobile devices and propose new digital design and building technologies for both prefabrication and on-site construction.
By bringing together international researchers and industry partners from a wide variety of fields and cultures, IAAC seeks to create a multidisciplinary and multicultural environment, a place to rethink the construction sector and train the new generation of professionals capable of having a positive impact on our future built environment and economy.
After completion of their Master degree, IAAC alumni had the opportunity to either join renown companies (Zaha Hadid, Foster, BIG), continue their research in other institutions or centers (MIT, ETH Zurich, Eurecat, AA school) or launch their own practice and start-up (Scale Robotics, DesignandRobotics and more). By choosing to apply for a 2nd year at IAAC within the MRAC02 or the 3DPA programs, students get in closer contact with IAAC partner industries, universities and start-up incubators, taking full advantage of our network to create their future career. See below some of the IAAC alumni stories and discover what they have to say about their careers!
Our scholarship competition has now finished and we’re unable to accept any more scholarship applications for this year. If you would like to find out when the competition is reopening, please subscribe to our newsletter where we will make the announcement.
PROJECT PROPOSAL: “HOW TECHNOLOGY WILL SHAPE THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY?”
In a crucial moment of digital shifts, the Master in Robotics and Advanced Construction (MRAC) invites you to participate in the definition of a new Construction protocol. Thanks to technological advancements, novel mechanical and digital solutions are emerging, questioning traditional design, fabrication and assembly protocols.
Robotics arms, autonomous robots, augmented reality are introducing new disruptive methods to control, interact and define a new Construction era.
Defining new tools allows reshaping the way we envision Architecture, increasing our ability to control the multiple layers impacting our built environment, proposing more sustainable, efficient methods of design and construction.
For the MRAC Scholarship Competition, we invite participants to propose a new technology or analyse an existing one and answer the following question: How this technology can shape the industry?
- Submit a single A4 sheet that can contain any type of information (text, drawings, sketches, renderings, diagrams, references…) with the aim of proposing, analysing or answering how the technology selected by the participant can shape the construction industry.
To apply the candidates should fill up the Scholarship Application Form at this link and upload their projects in there.
Start and end dates to be released soon.
The Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia will release the name of the winners on its official website.
IAAC’s Master in Robotics and Advanced Constructions (MRAC) mission is to train a new generation of professionals capable of answering the challenges of a more sustainable and customised construction ecosystem.
In order to do so, this new programme relies on a Scientific Committee made up by seven members, coming both from the professional and the academic world, who are chosen from among the top international experts of the field.
- Sigrid Brell-Cokcan (Robots in Architecture ; RWTH Aachen)
- Kasper Stoy (ITU Robotics, Evolution and Art Laboratory)
- Roland Snooks (Kokkugia ; RMIT)
- Fabian Scheurer (Design to Production)
- Jose Daniel Garcia Espinel (Acciona Innovation)
- Fabio Gramazio (ETH Zurich, DFab, Gramazio & Kohler Architect)
- Areti Markopoulou (IAAC’s Academic Director)