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Encyclopedia > Factory
This article is about manufacturing plants and different kinds of factories. For other uses, see factory (disambiguation).
A factory worker in 1940s Fort Worth, Texas.
A factory worker in 1940s Fort Worth, Texas.
George W. Bush in a factory
George W. Bush in a factory

A factory (previously manufactory) or manufacturing plant is a large industrial building where workers manufacture goods or supervise machines processing one product into another. Most modern factories have large warehouses or warehouse-like facilities that contain heavy equipment used for assembly line production. Archetypally, factories gather and concentrate resources — workers, capital and plant. A factory is a large industrial building where goods are manufactured. ... Download high resolution version (957x742, 131 KB) File links The following pages link to this file: World War II Rosie the Riveter Categories: U.S. history images ... Download high resolution version (957x742, 131 KB) File links The following pages link to this file: World War II Rosie the Riveter Categories: U.S. history images ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Fort Worth is the sixth-largest city in the state of Texas, located about 30 miles west of Dallas on the West Fork Trinity River and forming part of the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. ... Official language(s) No Official Language See languages of Texas Capital Austin Largest city Houston Area  Ranked 2nd  - Total 261,797 sq mi (678,051 km²)  - Width 773 miles (1,244 km)  - Length 790 miles (1,270 km)  - % water 2. ... Image File history File linksMetadata No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File linksMetadata No higher resolution available. ... George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is the 43rd and current President of the United States, inaugurated on January 20, 2001. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Manufacturing, a branch of industry, is the application of tools and a processing medium to the transformation of raw materials into finished goods for sale. ... Good (accounting) - Wikipedia /**/ @import /skins-1. ... Wind turbines The scientific definition of a machine is any device that transmits or modifies energy. ... Typically, processing describes the act of taking something through an established and usually routine set of procedures to convert it from one form to another, as a manufacturing procedure (processing milk into cheese) or administrative procedure (processing paperwork to grant a mortgage loan). ... Inside Green Logistics Co. ... This page discusses common devices known as tools, for other meanings see Tool (disambiguation) Modern hammer A tool is, among other things, a device that provides a mechanical or mental advantage in accomplishing a task. ... Modern car assembly line. ... For other senses of this word, see archetype (disambiguation). ... In classical economics and all micro-economics labour is a measure of the work done by human beings and is one of three factors of production, the others being land and capital. ... Capital has a number of related meanings in economics, finance and accounting. ... A physical plant or mechanical plant refers to the necessary infrastructure used in support of a given facility. ...


History of the factory

Although large mills and manufactories were established in ancient Rome, the Venice Arsenal provides the first example of a factory in the modern sense of the word. Founded in 1104 in Venice, Italy, several hundred years before the Industrial Revolution, it mass-produced ships on assembly lines using manufactured parts. The Venice Arsenal apparently produced nearly one ship every day and, at its height, employed 16,000 people. Ancient Rome was a civilization that grew from a small agricultural community founded on the Italian Peninsula circa the 9th century BC to a massive empire straddling the Mediterranean Sea. ... The Porta Magna at the Venetian Arsenal The Venetian Arsenal (Italian: Arsenale di Venezia) is a shipyard and naval depot that played a leading role in Venetian empire-building. ... Events September 3 - St. ... Venice (Italian: Venezia, Venetian: Venezsia) is the capital of region Veneto, and has a population of 271,663 (census estimate January 1, 2004). ... A Watt steam engine. ... Mass production is the production of large amounts of standardised products on production lines. ... Modern car assembly line. ... The American system of manufacturing involves semi-skilled labor using machine tools and templates (or jigs) to make standardized, identical, interchangeable parts, manufactured to a tolerance. ...

In ancient China, imperial and private workshops, mills, and small manufactories had been employed since the Eastern Zhou Dynasty (771-221 BC), as noted in the historical text of the Zhou Li.[1] During the medieval Song Dynasty (960-1279 AD), independent and government sponsored industries were developed to meet the needs of a growing population that had reached over 100 million. For example, for the printing of paper money alone, the Song court established several government-run factories in the cities of Huizhou, Chengdu, Hangzhou, and Anqi.[2] The size of the workforce employed in these paper money factories were quite large, as it was recorded in 1175 AD that the factory at Hangzhou alone employed more than a thousand workers a day.[2] The Chinese iron industry was also expanded during the Song Dynasty, with a sixfold increase in per capita cast iron output between the years 806 and 1078 AD, meaning an overall weight of 127000000 kg (125,000 t) of cast iron product from state-run facilities was forged in the latter year alone.[3] China is the worlds oldest continuous major civilization, with written records dating back about 3,500 years and with 5,000 years being commonly used by Chinese as the age of their civilization. ... Alternative meaning: Zhou Dynasty (690 CE - 705 CE) The Zhou Dynasty (周朝; Wade-Giles: Chou Dynasty) (late 10th century BC to late 9th century BC - 256 BC) followed the Shang (Yin) Dynasty and preceded the Qin Dynasty in China. ... Centuries: 9th century BC - 8th century BC - 7th century BC Decades: 820s BC 810s BC 800s BC 790s BC 780s BC - 770s BC - 760s BC 750s BC 740s BC 730s BC 720s BC Events and Trends 778 BC - Agamestor, King of Athens dies after a reign of 17 years and... Centuries: 4th century BC - 3rd century BC - 2nd century BC Decades: 270s BC 260s BC 250s BC 240s BC 230s BC - 220s BC - 210s BC 200s BC 190s BC 180s BC 170s BC Years: 226 BC 225 BC 224 BC 223 BC 222 BC - 221 BC - 220 BC 219 BC... Zhou Li (周禮) is known in English as the Rituals of Zhou or the Rites of Zhou. ... Northern Song in 1111 AD Capital Kaifeng (960–1127) Linan (1127–1279) Language(s) Chinese Religion Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism Government Monarchy History  - Zhao Kuangyin taking over the throne of the Later Zhou Dynasty 960  - Battle of Yamen; the end of Song rule 1279 Population  - Peak est. ... Events Edgar the Peaceable crowned King of England. ... For broader historical context, see 1270s and 13th century. ... A £20 Bank of England banknote. ... Huizhou (Simplified Chinese: 惠州; Pinyin: ) is a prefecture-level city in Guangdong province, Peoples Republic of China. ...   (Chinese: ; Pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Cheng-tu), located in southwest China, is the capital of the Sichuan province and a sub-provincial city. ...   (Chinese: ; Pinyin: ; Postal map spelling: Hangchow) is a sub-provincial city in the Peoples Republic of China and the capital of Zhejiang province. ... General Name, Symbol, Number iron, Fe, 26 Chemical series transition metals Group, Period, Block 8, 4, d Appearance lustrous metallic with a grayish tinge Standard atomic weight 55. ... Cast iron usually refers to grey cast iron, but can mean any of a group of iron-based alloys containing more than 2% carbon (alloys with less carbon are carbon steel by definition). ...

Many historians regard Matthew Boulton's Soho Manufactory (established in 1761 in Birmingham) as the first modern factory. (Other claims might be made for John Lombe's silk mill in Derby (1721), or Richard Arkwright's Cromford Mill (1771)—purpose built to fit the equipment it held and taking the material through the various manufacturing processes.) Matthew Boulton. ... The Soho Manufactory was an early factory, opening in Soho, Birmingham, England by Matthew Boulton in 1761. ... 1761 was a common year starting on Thursday (see link for calendar). ... unga bunga This article is about the English city. ... John Lombe (1693 - 1722) was an inventor who patented 3 types of Silk machines, for winding, spinning and twisting. ... The Derby Industrial Museum is housed in a former Silk Mill in Derby, England. ... Derby (pronounced dar-bee ) is a city in the East Midlands of England. ... // Events Pope Innocent XIII becomes pope Johann Sebastian Bach composes the Brandenburg Concertos April 4 - Robert Walpole becomes the first prime minister of Britain September 10 - Treaty of Nystad is signed, bringing an end to the Great Northern War November 2 - Peter I is proclaimed Emperor of All the Russias... Richard Arkwright Sir Richard Arkwright (23 December 1732 – 3 August 1792) was an Englishman credited with the spinning frame — later renamed the water frame following the transition to water power. ... Masson Mills, Derwent Valley Derwent Valley Mills is a World Heritage Site along the River Derwent in Derbyshire, England, designated in December 2001. ... 1771 was a common year starting on Tuesday (see link for calendar). ...

British colonies in the late 18th century built factories simply as buildings where a large number of workers gathered to perform hand labor, usually in textile production. This proved more efficient – for administration and for the distribution of raw materials to individual workers – than earlier methods of manufacturing such as cottage industries or the putting-out system. (17th century - 18th century - 19th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 18th century refers to the century that lasted from 1701 through 1800. ... Sunday textile market on the sidewalks of Karachi, Pakistan. ... Look up Administration (business) in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... The use of the term has expanded, and is used to refer to any event which allows a large number of people to lalalawork part time. ...

Cotton mills used inventions such as the steam engine and the power loom to pioneer the industrial factory of the 19th century, where precision machine tools and replaceable parts allowed greater efficiency and less waste. This article does not cite its references or sources. ... // The term steam engine may also refer to an entire railroad steam locomotive. ... Some of the 1200 power looms at the Plevna factory building, completed in 1877, at the Finlayson & Co cotton mills in Tampere, Finland The power loom was designed in 1784 by Edward Cartwright and first built in 1785. ... Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ... A machine tool is a powered mechanical device, typically used to fabricate metal components of machines by the selective removal of metal. ... Material efficiency is a description or metric which expresses the degree to which a construction project or physical process is carried out in a manner which consumes, incorporates, or wastes more or less of a given material compared to some standard. ...

Between 1820 and 1850, the non-mechanized factories supplanted the traditional artisanal shops as the predominant form of manufacturing institution. Even though the theory on why and how the non-mechanized factories gradually replaced the small artisan shops is still ambiguous, what is apparent is that the larger-scale factories enjoyed technological gains and advance in efficiency over the small artisan shops. In fact, the larger scale forms of factory establishments were more favorable and advantageous over the small artisan shops in terms of competition for survial.

Henry Ford further revolutionized the factory concept in the early 20th century, with the innovation of mass production. Highly specialized workers situated alongside a series of rolling ramps would build up a product such as (in Ford's case) an automobile. This concept dramatically decreased production costs for virtually all manufactured goods and brought about the age of consumerism. Henry Ford (1919) Henry Ford (July 30, 1863 – April 7, 1947) was the founder of the Ford Motor Company and father of modern assembly lines used in mass production. ... (19th century - 20th century - 21st century - more centuries) Decades: 1900s 1910s 1920s 1930s 1940s 1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s As a means of recording the passage of time, the 20th century was that century which lasted from 1901–2000 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar (1900–1999... Mass production is the production of large amounts of standardised products on production lines. ... Karl Benzs Velo (vélo means bicycle in French) model (1894) - entered into the first automobile race 2005 MINI Cooper S. An automobile (also motor car or simply car) is a wheeled passenger vehicle that carries its own motor. ... Consumerist redirects here. ...

In the mid- to late 20th century, industrialized countries introduced next-generation factories with two improvements:

  1. Advanced statistical methods of (quality control), pioneered by the American mathematician William Edwards Deming, whom his home country initially ignored. Quality control turned Japanese factories into world leaders in cost-effectiveness and production quality.
  2. Industrial robots on the factory floor, introduced in the late 1970s. These computer-controlled welding arms and grippers could perform simple tasks such as attaching a car door quickly and flawlessly 24 hours a day. This too cut costs and improved speed.

Some speculation as to the future of the factory includes scenarios with rapid prototyping, nanotechnology, and orbital zero-gravity facilities. A graph of a Normal bell curve showing statistics used in educational assessment and comparing various grading methods. ... Dr. William Edwards Deming (October 14, 1900 - December 20, 1993) was a American physicist and statistician, attaining great influence in the field of statistical process control. ... Cost-effectiveness In economics, comparison of the relative expenditure (costs) and outcomes (effects) associated with two or more courses of action. ... ASIMO, a humanoid robot manufactured by Honda. ... The 1970s decade refers to the years from 1970 to 1979. ... A rapid prototyping machine using Selective laser sintering. ... Buckminsterfullerene C60, also known as the buckyball, is the simplest of the carbon structures known as fullerenes. ... Two bodies with a slight difference in mass orbiting around a common barycenter. ... Gravity is a force of attraction that acts between bodies that have mass. ...

Siting the factory

Before the advent of mass transportation, factories' needs for ever-greater concentrations of workers meant that they typically grew up in an urban setting or fostered their own urbanization. Industrial slums developed, and re-enforced their own development through the interactions between factories, as when one factory's output or waste-product became the raw materials of another factory (preferably nearby). Canals and railways grew as factories spread, each clustering around sources of cheap energy, available materials and/or mass markets. The exception proved the rule: even Greenfield's factory sites such as Bournville, founded in a rural setting, developed its own housing and profited from convenient communications networks. A taxi serving as a bus Public transport comprises all transport systems in which the passengers do not travel in their own vehicles. ... A boy from an East Cipinang trash dump slum in Jakarta, Indonesia shows his find. ... Interaction is a kind of action that occurs as two or more objects have an effect upon one another. ... The Canal du Midi, Toulouse, France Canals are man-made channels for water. ... Clustering can refer to Computer clustering - (in Computer science) the connection of many low-cost computers using special hardware and software such that they can be used as one larger computer. ... Bournville is an area on the south side of Birmingham, best known for its connections with the Cadbury family and chocolate - including a dark chocolate bar branded Bournville. It is also home to a campus of the Birmingham Institute of Art and Design. ...

Regulation curbed some of the worst excesses of industrialization's factory-based society, a series of Factory Acts leading the way in Britain. Trams, automobiles and town planning encouraged the separate development ('apartheid') of industrial suburbs and residential suburbs, with workers commuting between them. This article needs to be cleaned up to conform to a higher standard of quality. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Urban, city, or town planning, deals with design of the built environment from the municipal and metropolitan perspective. ...

Though factories dominated the Industrial Era, the growth in the service sector eventually began to dethrone them: the locus of work in general shifted to central-city office towers or to semi-rural campus-style establishments, and many factories stood deserted in local rust belts. The tertiary sector of industry, also called the service sector or the service industry, is one of the three main industrial categories of a developed economy, the others being the secondary industry (manufacturing and primary goods production such as agriculture), and primary industry (extraction such as mining and fishing). ... Manufacturing Belt, highlighted in red The Rust Belt, a term coined from Manufacturing Belt, is an area in parts of the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States of America. ...

The next blow to the traditional factories came from globalization. Manufacturing processes (or their logical successors, assembly plants) in the late 20th century re-focussed in many instances on Special Economic Zones in developing countries or on maquiladoras just across the national boundaries of industrialized states. Further re-location to the least industrialized nations appears possible as the benefits of out-sourcing and the lessons of flexible location apply in the future. A KFC franchise in Kuwait. ... Modern car assembly line. ... A Special Economic Zone (SEZ) is a geographical region that has economic laws different from a countrys typical economic laws. ... A maquiladora (or maquila) is a factory, that imports materials and equipment on a duty-free and tariff-free basis for assembly or manufacturing. ... Outsourcing became part of the business lexicon during the 1980s and often refers to the delegation of non-core operations from internal production to an external entity specializing in the management of that operation. ...

Governing the factory

Much of management theory developed in response to the need to control factory processes. Assumption of the hierarchies of unskilled, semi-skilled and skilled workers and their supervisors and managers linger on. Look up Management in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

See also

Manufacturing and manufacturing systems manufacturing factory Craft system English system of manufacturing American system of manufacturing Mass production Batch production Just in time manufacturing Toyota Production System Lean manufacturing Computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) Mass customization Theories of production Taylorism Fordism Theory of constraints Productivity Productivity benchmarking cost accounting experience curve... Manufacturing, a branch of industry, is the application of tools and a processing medium to the transformation of raw materials into finished goods for sale. ... In object-oriented computer programming, a factory object is an object for creating other objects. ... A recovered factory (fábrica recuperada) is a company in which its workers have taken over control, commonly after mass redundancy or intentional bankruptcy by the managment. ... A display of a narrow gauge industrial sand train An industrial railway is a type of private railway used exclusively to serve a particular industry inside a mine or factory compound. ... A software factory is defined as a facility that assembles (not codes) software applications to conform to a Specification following a strict Methodology. ... A Watt steam engine. ...


  1. ^ Needham, Volume 4, Part 3, 16-17.
  2. ^ a b Needham, Volume 5, Part 1, 48.
  3. ^ Ebrey, 158.


  • Needham, Joseph (1986). Science and Civilization in China: Volume 5, Part 1. Taipei: Caves Books, Ltd.

External Links

  • Qualitionary - Legal Definitions - Factory
  • Qualitionary - Legal Definitions - Plant

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