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MTE’s Modular Business Expansion

How MTE combines expertise and innovation to achieve commercially viable modular buildings.

Historically MTE has extensive experience in supplying high integrity modular buildings installed in some of the most remote locations and harshest of environments and designed to withstand extreme fire, blast and seismic conditions.

Recently, MTE has extended its product offering by expanding the modular business to offer cost effective modular buildings where high levels of fire, blast & seismic protection are not always specified. This achievement represents the combined efforts of a modular building task team, assembled from all disciplines within the business and focussed on how to fulfil clients’ requirements for high standards of safety, quality and on-time delivery whilst offering competitive pricing. 

The Design Challenge

The challenge of producing cost effective modular buildings whilst satisfying market needs for safety, quality and on-time delivery was first tackled from a design and engineering perspective.

Previous cost down initiatives had limited success because almost every millimetre of weld and every gram of material could be justified when considering high integrity modular buildings designed for Mech-Tool’s traditional markets.

The Design Solution

Cross-Sector Learning

It became essential to learn from the work undertaken in alternative markets, taking best practise approaches developed for these sectors and determining how they can be applied to the MTE’s modular buildings.

An essential element of this has been the appointment of new team members who bring a wealth of design experience from alternative markets.

MTE expanded their modular expertise by welcoming Richard Efuetajong to the Modular team as Design Engineer. Richard has extensive experience in the field having worked for 16 years in designing and developing steel and modular buildings to required specifications, focusing on cost effectiveness, safety, quality and sustainability. He has experience in working across a range of different industries including onshore and offshore Oil & Gas, Nuclear, Rail and Power and has a comprehensive knowledge of codes, standards and design execution pertinent to structural engineering. Richard also brings a wealth of knowledge to the team having acquired numerous qualifications including an honours degree in civil engineering and a master’s degree in structural engineering.

The Starting Point

Because of the extent of change required, a decision was made to develop a new modular building design concept from the ground up instead of pursuing further cost down initiatives. This significant investment allowed a step change in manufacturing lead time and project costs, resulting in modular buildings that are purpose built for the intended.  

High Performing Teams

Expertise comes from a desire to learn, and skills that are honed over a significant period adding to a wealth of knowledge.

The return of Ron Davison as Technical Consultant was of great importance in strengthening MTE’s modular design knowledge and expertise and ultimately creating a strong and experienced task team.  

Ron was previously MTE’s Technical Director for over 23 years, becoming an expert in the design and construction of blast and fire rated structures. He spent a significant proportion of that time developing high integrity blast and fire rated stressed skin solutions for transportable modules and modular buildings, including many equipment modules and living quarters. Throughout this time Ron has presented several technical papers related to the design of structures to withstand hydrocarbon fuelled explosions, fire and jet fire.

Ron has a 1st Class Honours Degree in Mechanical Engineering and is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer with European Engineer status and a Fellow of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers.

Innovation comes from a willingness to look for new and better solutions to the same challenges, not being stuck in the old ways of working but looking for new methods and new technologies. Research and Development has been at the heart of this new development and the MTE team has worked tirelessly to efficiently incorporate client requirements into industry compliant modular buildings. 3D modelling, trial builds and full-scale testing validate the R&D work and ensure that the company can meet the market challenge without compromise.

A significant contributor to the success has not only been the skill and capability of the team but also the willingness to bring expertise and innovation together to find the optimum solution. It has been the combined efforts of individuals such as Richard Efuetajong and Ron Davison that has resulted in success.   

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