MIT Takes 3D Printing Construction Another Lead Forward
Information sourced from HowStuffWorks
The basic construction process has remained unchanged for hundreds of years.
Now, 3D printing has the potential to open the door to an industrialized period of construction while lowering costs, shortening schedule, and reducing environmental impact.
HowStuffWorks reports that researchers at MIT have recently advanced the practice from just 3D printing parts to 3D printing entire structures.
Their Digital Construction Platform (DCP) differs from other printing systems by being able to move freely; it does not have to be in an enclosed space, and has–theoretically–no limits.
Last year, Syska was a member of a global team who designed, printed, assembled and fit-out the world’s first fully functional commercial office for the United Arab Emirates Dubai Future Foundation.
Construction was completed with the world’s largest 3D printer—20 feet tall, 120 feet long, and 40 feet wide—using a fixed-in-place robotic arm to layer three innovative materials.
Unlike traditional projects, the building’s key services (including plumbing, electric, HVAC, and telecommunications) were integrated into a unique 3D-printed design. The full modules took only 17 days to print. The printed modules were installed on site within two days, significantly faster than traditional construction methods for Class-A office buildings. The result is a high-performance, truly sustainable structure, reducing labor costs by up to 80 percent and construction waste by up to 60 percent.
Since the Office of the Future was inaugurated on May 23, 2016, architects in Madrid have erected a 3D-printed footbridge, while a Dutch company has plans for a 3D printed steel bridge.
Click here to learn more about the Office of the Future project.