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  1. ArchDaily
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  3. This Complex Concrete Column Was Made Using 3D-Printed Formwork

This Complex Concrete Column Was Made Using 3D-Printed Formwork

This Complex Concrete Column Was Made Using 3D-Printed Formwork
This Complex Concrete Column Was Made Using 3D-Printed Formwork, © Lisa Ricciotti
© Lisa Ricciotti

While large-scale 3D printing for architecture continues to be a busy area of research, France-based company XtreeE has been using 3D printed concrete in projects since 2015. Their latest creation is an organic truss-style support structure for a preschool playground in Aix-en-Provence.

Courtesy of XtreeE Courtesy of XtreeE Courtesy of XtreeE Courtesy of XtreeE + 11

© Lisa Ricciotti
© Lisa Ricciotti

The project for the building itself was designed by Marc Dalibard, but XtreeE executed the final design and production of the concrete column. The finished piece stands 4 meters tall and blends seamlessly with the concrete of the preschool building.

© Lisa Ricciotti
© Lisa Ricciotti

To create the structure, XtreeE programmed an industrial robot arm to extrude a special mixture of concrete to form the "envelope," or outer layer, of the organic structure. The hollow envelope was then filled with LafargeHolcim concrete and filed to remove the appearance of each printed layer, creating a smooth surface that calls to mind the twisted roots of a tree. 

Courtesy of XtreeE
Courtesy of XtreeE

The structure was printed in segments at the XtreeE studio and then assembled on site. The printing process alone took over 15 hours--however, once the print program is written, it could in theory be used to produce a large number of identical concrete supports with less human labor than traditional methods.

Courtesy of XtreeE
Courtesy of XtreeE

Operation: Bâtiment équipements sportifs.
Client: Métropole d’Aix Marseille – Territoire du Pays d’Aix
Architect: Marc Dalibard Société d’Architecture
Structural engineering: Artelia
Algorithmic design: EZCT Architecture & Design Research & XtreeE
Construction company: AD Concept
Machine Files & Manufacturing of the Molds: XtreeE
Mold concrete: LafargeHolcim
UHPC Casting: Fehr Architectural
Photographs: Lisa Riciotti / XtreeE

Courtesy of XtreeE
Courtesy of XtreeE
Cite: Isabella Baranyk. "This Complex Concrete Column Was Made Using 3D-Printed Formwork" 28 Feb 2017. ArchDaily. Accessed . <https://www.archdaily.com/806230/this-complex-concrete-column-was-made-using-3d-printed-formwork/> ISSN 0719-8884
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© Lisa Ricciotti

运用3D打印框架建造的复杂混凝土柱