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3 D Printing: The Latest Architecture and News

Building the Future with 3D Printing and Real-Time Visualization

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Why is 3D-printed architecture on the rise?

According to a July 2021 report by Grand View Research, the global 3D construction market is set to grow by an incredible 91% between 2021 and 2028. And, why is printed architecture seeing such rapid growth? Firstly, 3D printing is emerging as a possible solution to some of the challenges currently facing architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) – it can provide affordable housing, shelters for disaster-hit regions, and an answer to sustainable construction. Alongside these, one of the main advantages is the lower construction costs. It’s far easier to calculate the actual volume of construction material required, resulting in less waste.

ICON Completes 3D-Printed Houses In Austin

Developer 3Strands and construction company ICON have completed new 3D-printed houses for sale in the United States, showcasing the possibilities of additive manufacturing for mass-market housing. Located in Austin, Texas, within a fast-growing neighbourhood, the East 17th St Residences development is designed by Logan Architecture and comprises four units with 3D-printed ground floors whose tectonics reflect the construction technology.

© Regan Morton Photography© Regan Morton Photography© Regan Morton Photography© Regan Morton Photography+ 14

Is It Possible to Mix Local Materials and 3D Printing?

The art of building a shelter made from blocks of ice is passed on from father to son among the Inuit, native peoples who inhabit the northernmost regions of the planet. The circular plan, the entrance tunnel, the air outlet and the ice blocks form a structure where the heat generated inside melts a superficial layer of snow and seals the gaps, improving the thermal insulation of ice. In a storm, an igloo can be the difference between life and death and perhaps this is the most iconic and radical example of what it means to build with local materials, few tools and lots of knowledge. In this case, ice is all you have.

Taking advantage of abundant resources and local labor are key concepts for sustainable architecture, which are often overlooked at the expense of solutions replicated from other contexts. With new demands and technologies, the globalization of building materials and construction techniques, is there still room for local materials? More specifically in relation to 3D printed constructions, are we destined to erect them only in concrete?

Automating the Construction Site

For several years, the construction sector has been facing a labour shortage, generating a growing interest in automation. The health crisis has only exacerbated the trend, prompting automation companies to turn their focus from car manufacturing to the construction industry, for which automation is expected to grow up to 30% within the next few years. The following explores present capabilities and future possibilities of automation within the construction process, its integration within the mainstream practice and the impact on design.

Elytra Filament Pavilion ICD-ITKE University of Stuttgart. Image Courtesy of ICD-ITKERobotic Collaboration. Image Courtesy of ETH ZurichRobotic Collaboration. Image Courtesy of ETH ZurichElytra Filament Pavilion ICD-ITKE University of Stuttgart. Image © Julien Lanoo+ 10

Beyond the Geometry Plastic 3D Printed Pavilion / Archi-Union Architects + Fab-Union

© Schran Image© Schran Image© Schran Image© Schran Image+ 26

Nanjing, China

3D Printing With Thermoplastics Creates a Folding System That Controls Light Temperature

The roof of Euston Station in London is the large-scale architectural setting for the virtual application of the comprehensive Metaplas system, created by students from the Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL. As part of an investigation carried out in Research Cluster 8 (RC8) of the Master's program in Architectural Design, students developed a 3D printed multimaterial system from biodegradable and recyclable thermoplastics. Transforming a series of flat panels into complex three-dimensional forms, students created a structural system with geometric folds that allows for passive control of the lighting of interior spaces.

Architecture on Mars: Projects for Life on the Red Planet

Martian Seed of Life / Warith Zaki + Amir Amzar. Image © Karim Moussa, Warith Zaki, Amir Amzar, Nasril ZarudinMars Colonization / ZA Architects. Image © ZA ArchitectsMarsha / AI Space Factory. Image © AI SpaceFactory and PlompIce House / Clouds AO + SEArch . Image © Clouds AO y SEArch+ 15

February 2021 has been a historical month for Mars exploration. While humans have been exploring the red planet for well over 50 years, first landing on its surface in 1971 and then launching the first successful rover in 1997, this year has seen several firsts, namely the first time that three countries (China, United States, and the UAE) have launched three simultaneous probes.

A Robot-3D Printed Concrete Book Cabin / Professor XU Weiguo's Team

completed building. Image Courtesy of Professor XU Weiguo's Teamcompleted building. Image Courtesy of Professor XU Weiguo's Teamdetails. Image Courtesy of Professor XU Weiguo's Teaminterior. Image Courtesy of Professor XU Weiguo's Team+ 20

Shanghai, China

ICON's First 3D Printed Homes for Sale in Austin, Texas

Kansas City developer 3Strands has announced U.S.A’s first 3D printed homes for sale, the company’s first multi-home project in Austin, Texas. Built with construction technology company ICON, the housing development includes two to four-bedroom homes in one of the fastest-growing cities in America. Designed by Logan Architecture, the project utilizes the Vulcan construction system to build each home.

Courtesy of ICON & 3StrandsCourtesy of ICON & 3StrandsCourtesy of ICON & 3StrandsCourtesy of ICON & 3Strands+ 10

Round Houses of Raw Earth: 3D Printing Sustainable Homes in 200 Hours

A recent collaboration between the team of Mario Cucinella Architects (MC A) and WASP, specialists in 3D Printing in Italy, has resulted in the first 3D-printed construction of a fully natural, recyclable, and carbon-neutral material: raw earth. The circular housing prototype is called TECLA and it was built in Massa Lombarda (Ravenna, Italy) using multiple 3D printers synchronized to work at the same time.

Integrating Computational Design and Research Could Stimulate New Digital Craftmanship

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The Advanced Master[1] “Design by Data” in Computation Design & Robotics for Architecture and Construction was launched in 2016 and is one of the latest programs in innovative professional education at l'École des Ponts ParisTech. The program was designed to meet the increasing need of the professional sectors of architecture and engineering for combining architectural awareness and skills in creative engineering. Design by Data trains professionals to master advanced design tools (coding, generative design, machine learning) as well as digital manufacturing and design processes (robotics, 3D printing, and mechatronics) applied to architectural and construction projects.

MAD Architects' Wormhole Library Tops Out in Haikou, China

MAD Architects has unveiled that the Wormhole Library, had topped-out in the city of Haikou, China at the end of January 2021. The curved multi-functional structure, cast of white concrete, is scheduled to be completed and operational in the Spring of 2021. Once ready, the project will allow visitors to read, enjoy the sea views and attend open-air performances.

Courtesy of MADCourtesy of MADCourtesy of MADCourtesy of MAD+ 21

3D Printing a 2-Meter-High Column in 30 Minutes: What's Next With This Technology?

There's no question that 3D printing is here to stay. However, it is still a developing technology that raises certain questions: is it really effective for massive and large-scale construction? How sustainable is it? Will it go from being an option to becoming the norm in the construction industry? To help clarify the broader picture of 3D printing's place in architecture and construction, we spoke with Alain Guillen, Managing Director and Co-founder of XtreeE, a platform that allows architects to bring their designs to reality through advanced large-scale 3D printing, generating quick and precise shapes without material waste. See below how he and his team see the future of robotics in architecture and why architects should prepare to embrace this new technology, heading for a more efficient but equally creative future.