A factory (previously manufactory) or manufacturing plant is an industrial site, usually consisting of buildings and machinery, or more commonly a complex having several buildings, where workers manufacture goods or operate machines processing one product into another.
Factories arose with the introduction of machinery during the Industrial Revolution when the capital and space requirements became too great for cottage industry or workshops. Early factories that contained small amounts of machinery, such as one or two spinning mules, and fewer than a dozen workers have been called "glorified workshops.
Most modern factories have large warehouses or warehouse-like facilities that contain heavy equipment used for assembly line production. Large factories tend to be located with access to multiple modes of transportation, with some having rail, highway and water loading and unloading facilities.
Factories may either make discrete products or some type of material continuously produced such as chemicals, pulp and paper or refined oil products. Factories manufacturing chemicals are often called plants and may have most of their equipment, consisting of tanks, pressure vessels, chemical reactors and pumps and piping located outdoors and are operated by personnel in control rooms. Oil refineries are similar to chemical plants in that most equipment is outdoors.
Discrete products may range from parts to components and assemblies which are made into final products elsewhere or they may make final products. Factories may start from parts supplied from elsewhere or may make parts from raw materials. Industries making continuous materials, sometimes called process industries, typically use energy, usually heat, electricity or both, to transform raw materials into finished product.
The term mill properly refers to milling of grain, which which was usually done by water power from ancient times until displaced by steam power in the 19th century. Because many processes like spinning and weaving, iron rolling, and paper manufacturing were originally powered by water, the term survives such as steel mill, paper mill, etc.
Other articles related to "factory":
... Halda was founded in 1887 by the factory owner Henning Hammarlund (1857-1922) in order to primarily produce pocket watches ... particularly Switzerland, returned to Sweden determined to start a Swedish pocketwatch factory ...
8, 2007, at Boeing's Everett assembly factory, by which time it had reached 677 orders this is more orders from launch to roll-out than any previous wide-body airliner ... Final assembly is at the Boeing Everett Factory in Everett, Washington ... Assembly is also taking place at a new factory in North Charleston, South Carolina ...
... The factory was closed in 2009 after being sold by Dairy Crest to the Long Clawson Dairy Company ... The cheese shop associated with the factory has re-opened under private ownership ...
... The town grew after World War II together with a lime factory which later produced bricks ... At its peak the factory employed about 1,000 people. 1990 declaration of independence, the factory faced severe financial difficulties while shifting from planned economy to free market ...
... in Crewe and Glasgow and using a purpose-built factory of Ford of Britain in Trafford Park Manchester ...
Famous quotes containing the word factory:
“If the factory people outside the colleges live under the discipline of narrow means, the people inside live under almost every other kind of discipline except that of narrow meansfrom the fruity austerities of learning, through the iron rations of English gentlemanhood, down to the modest disadvantages of occupying cold stone buildings without central heating and having to cross two or three quadrangles to take a bath.”
—Margaret Halsey (b. 1910)
“Baltimore lay very near the immense protein factory of Chesapeake Bay, and out of the bay it ate divinely. I well recall the time when prime hard crabs of the channel species, blue in color, at least eight inches in length along the shell, and with snow-white meat almost as firm as soap, were hawked in Hollins Street of Summer mornings at ten cents a dozen.”
—H.L. (Henry Lewis)
“I cannot believe that our factory system is the best mode by which men may get clothing. The condition of the operatives is becoming every day more like that of the English; and it cannot be wondered at, since, as far as I have heard or observed, the principal object is, not that mankind may be well and honestly clad, but, unquestionably, that the corporations may be enriched.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)