Factory of the Future

Swinburne’s Factory of the Future provides industry and organisations with state-of-the-art facilities to explore conceptual ideas for manufacturing next generation products.

More than just a design, research, manufacturing or teaching space, the Factory of the Future is a hub for engaging manufacturing businesses, undergraduate and high school students, alumni and the wider community.

Located on the ground floor of Swinburne’s $100 million Advanced Manufacturing and Design Centre (AMDC), this ground-breaking facility is made up of a cluster of specialist studios with highly adaptive capacity. Equipped with advanced visualisation and design tools, designers will have the resources to develop prototypes rapidly, create innovative products and research potential manufacturing methods.

The facility offers an immersive virtual reality environment and is a place where designers work in partnership with leading engineers and research staff. It takes product development and construction to the next level by adding in design, business innovation, ICT and rapid prototyping. Designers and engineers can test sustainability and ‘cradle-to-cradle’ potential as well as produce hard copy prototypes – all within the same space.

Heralding a new chapter in Swinburne’s long history of industry-based learning, the Factory of the Future is a response to the evolving needs of industry and the education sector. Creating partnerships with industry and other organisations, and working in collaboration with Design Factory Melbourne, the Factory of the Future is a blueprint for modern innovation. Working collaboratively, Swinburne can develop new products and methods of manufacturing, as well as more productive, sustainable businesses. 

The Factory of the Future represents our industry portal for advanced manufacturing. We work with industry partners to solve key challenges through integration of innovative design platforms, advanced manufacturing technologies, materials and information systems. The outcomes of our work will commercialise new technology, enabling Australian companies to capitalise on the expanding international market and tap into global supply chains.

Associate Professor Nico Adams

Director, Factory of the Future

Australia’s first fully immersed Industry 4.0 facility

Swinburne has received a record $135 million grant from engineering giant Siemens to digitalise its Factory of the Future and create Australia’s first fully immersed Industry 4.0 facility.

The Factory of the Future is connected with Swinburne’s Manufacturing Futures Research Institute. Professor Bronwyn Fox, director of the institute, says the Industry 4.0 Testlab will enable Australian manufacturers to have access to cutting edge technology.

Five in one

The factory houses a series of co-located studios, each with a specific function:

  • 3-D Visualisation and Design Studio: featuring advanced visualisation tools that allow for intuitive real-time interaction with realistic 3-D imagery
  • Rapid Manufacturing Studio: equipped with advanced additive manufacturing tools that facilitate conversion from digital concepts to metal, plastic or ceramic prototypes
  • Advanced Inspection and Machining Studio: advanced machining capability combined with state-of-the-art inspection equipment for developing high quality components
  • Biodevice Innovation Studio: combines electronics, optics, chemistry and biomaterials-handling with rapid prototyping to produce innovative new medical devices
  • Design for Resource Efficiency Studio: for the design, development and assessment of recycling and manufacturing processes to maximise resource efficiency.


Nico Adams
Director, Factory of the Future
E: nicoadams@swinburne.edu.au
P: +61 3 9214 5011