×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Dutch Architect Plans 3D Printed Building

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the that's-a-lot-of-toner dept.

Technology 74

ExRex writes "Dutch architecture studio Universe Architecture is planning to construct a house with a 3D printer for the first time. The Landscape House will be printed in sections using the giant D-Shape printer, which can produce sections of up to 6 x 9 meters using a mixture of sand and a binding agent. Architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars of Universe Architecture will collaborate with Italian inventor Enrico Dini, who developed the D-Shape printer, to build the house, which has a looping form based on a Möbius strip. 3D printing website as saying: 'It will be the first 3D printed building in the world. I hope it can be opened to the public when it's finished.' The team are working with mathematician and artist Rinus Roelofs to develop the house, which they estimate will take around 18 months to complete. The D-Shape printer will create hollow volumes that will be filled with fiber-reinforced concrete to give it strength. The volumes will then be joined together to create the house."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

74 comments

Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42639793)

'I hope it can be opened to the public when it's finished'?? WTF?

Seriously, why build it if it can't be opened to the public? If this is an exercise just to prove it can be done why not build an extension onto your home, or add a garage or something.

Re:Seriously? (4, Informative)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about a year ago | (#42639867)

The architect doesn't build the building - he designs it. This architect has worked out the engineering and structural complications of making a usable modern building from what are effectively giant jigsaw puzzle pieces. Now someone else would have to acquire the materials, buy the land, and actually assemble the thing. Whoever's actually going to own the building will decide what to do with it. It might be an office, or maybe an art museum, or perhaps just "a garage or something", but it's not the architect's choice.

Re:Seriously? (4, Funny)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year ago | (#42640041)

No, the architect drew a pretty picture of an impossible to build structure that would fall down if it somehow was constructed.

He handed that to the Engineers who made it into a workable project.

Re:Seriously? (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640167)

conversely, the structural engineer simplified the design to the most efficient shape possible - for structure. the client got a box with no windows. The MEP took that design and filled it with the necessary requirements. The client got a mechanical room in the middle of the space that took up 40% of the total volume. The landscape architect took one look at the building, and had it leveled to create a park. The civil engineer took the park and created a drainage pond and a highway overpass.

The architect then sat down with the client and said, "would you like someone to make these guys actually work well?" And then to the consultants, he said "would you like to make some money?"

Architecture has changed from it's original stature as "The Master Builder." There's simply too much complexity in most buildings for any single trade to do everything on your own. Architects act similarly to movie directors these days. They may not write the script, they may not build the sets, they may not be the one behind each camera, but their ability to bring together all these elements is what makes the work sing as a whole.

Full disclosure, I am a CS major turned architect. An architect is, admittedly, a jack of all trades, ace of none. But it's that diversity that helps us traverse so many fields.

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42641845)

Why post anonymously? This is a very interesting post, it'd have more chance of gaining visibility if you logged in. (my post is uninteresting hence why I am too lazy to log in).

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42643599)

I'd still like architects to have a better understanding of structures. It would make my life as a civil engineer much easier.

Re:Seriously? (1)

Dr. Cody (554864) | about a year ago | (#42648177)

An architect is, admittedly, a jack of all trades, ace of none.

only because mad bong hits arent a trade.

Re:Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640057)

The architect doesn't build the building - he designs it.

Then what does construct mean? "Dutch architecture studio Universe Architecture is planning to construct a house with a 3D printer for the first time."

In general (1)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | about a year ago | (#42639807)

In general, are people making projects like this with 3D printers just to show they can? Is there some other motivation at work here?

Re:In general (4, Insightful)

plover (150551) | about a year ago | (#42639871)

In general, are people making projects like this with 3D printers just to show they can? Is there some other motivation at work here?

You see no use for a portable factory that can erect a completely custom building on demand? That it won't in any way change the way people live and work? That it won't impact the construction industry in the least? That a flock of them might come in and rebuild cities after a devastating disaster? Nothing about that strikes you as even remotely valuable?

Re:In general (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640077)

You see no use for a portable factory that can erect a completely custom building on demand? That it won't in any way change the way people live and work?

This 3D printing stuff is more than a decade from getting into the construction business. From what I understand they are just making custom blocks and I doubt they are doing it on site. They even have to pour in the concrete later.

The construction industry is conservative, they'll still take a while to adopt stuff even if someone already has built it. For example they'll wait to see if this falls over in the next few years or has other problems: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hdpf-MQM9vY [youtube.com]
If it doesn't then a few might consider it. And these bunch are closer to erecting custom buildings fast than the 3d printing thing.

Re:In general (1)

aaarrrgggh (9205) | about a year ago | (#42640447)

There was an article on /. maybe 6 or 8 years about about building a house with fiber-reinforced concrete in "printed" format, long before I had ever heard of 3d printing. I think the only site preparation was a flat slab. All kinds of fundamental problems, but an interesting novelty at the time.

As for the pace of change in the construction industry... Yes, it is slow but there have been a number of interesting changes from insulated concrete forms to various prefabrication concepts over the past decade.

Re:In general (1)

plover (150551) | about a year ago | (#42649475)

Read the link to D-Shape [d-shape.com] in the article above, and you can see that this is not just spitting out custom blocks: it's a room-sized printer that's placed on site. Two workmen can disassemble, move it to a new location on site, and reassemble it in a few hours.

The slowness in adoption to new construction methods you might witness in America does not translate to the Netherlands. They're far more willing to try cool new building ideas than we are.

Re:In general (1)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year ago | (#42640125)

None of that strikes me a even remotely viable.

The reason most houses are built off standard plans isn't because it costs a lot to make concrete forms.

Having a printer to make forms doesn't change the basic economics of home construction or the market viability of concrete homes.

If anything we will see more parts prefabbed in factories. A long time ago windows were fabricated on site. Some time ago roof trusses were fabricated on site. That trend will continue.

Re:In general (1)

theguyfromsaturn (802938) | about a year ago | (#42640425)

I completely agree. Prefabricated components are the way to go. Other than the ease of construction, they will allow more material to be used from an earlier construction in a new one, thus reducing the energy and material cost of new constructions. If anything LEEDs will encourage the trend towards modularity.

Re:In general (1)

plover (150551) | about a year ago | (#42649775)

Sure, wooden forms are pretty fast to set up. And I especially like those new foam forms that remain in place as insulation after the pour - there's a brilliant idea. And I have no idea how much effort or how long it will take to dig out the building from beneath the tons of sand left behind by this D-shape printer. But we shall see. Perhaps this might turn out to be the best way to achieve continuous curves for the same price as straight lines, and that will appeal to certain customers. Maybe it's a reduced labor device - just add sand and glue, and out pops a hurricane-resistant house.

Or maybe they'll decide that the printed concrete thing isn't viable, but what about converting it to a polyurethane foam printer? The foam hardens fairly rapidly and could be made self supporting, not requiring all that extra sand. They could print hollow forms for concrete, if they need the strength. People use spray foam today to make portable insulated shelters - why not expand upon that idea? (Practically, I'm thinking there's no way a rolling gantry machine could reliably operate for long in the sticky mess that spray foam machines produce. That, and the raw surface of the foam is completely ugly. But I'm just tossing out other ideas.)

Anyway, I think it's way too early to be calling this technology "not worth it." Its day may yet come.

Re:In general (2)

theguyfromsaturn (802938) | about a year ago | (#42640331)

Actually 3D printed structures are probably a bad idea in general, unless it is meant to be a "national" building that will be maintained and last for ideally hundreds if not thousands of years. A 3D printed building is not likely to be able to use materials from pre-existing structures, and whatever is printed is unlikely to be resuable at the end of the structure's lifespan. There is much more future in the design of Leg-like construction modules that would make it easy to assemble and disassemble structural compnents.

An added disadvanted of the printed building is that I see it being difficult to actually print "reinforced" concrete this way. I'm not sure a two storey building would be safe, let alone a multistorey building. Very short span single storey buildings seems to be as much as you can get out of it. It's good for sheds, but not much else. But really the lack of reusability of components is its greatest Achiles heel going on.

Re:In general (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about a year ago | (#42642197)

An added disadvanted of the printed building is that I see it being difficult to actually print "reinforced" concrete this way

Fibre reinforced concrete has been around for decades. There's even steel fibre reinforced concrete.

However, this project is using some wonder-resin mock-sandstone that is supposedly stronger than Portland and doesn't need reinforcing.

Re:In general (1)

MrDoh! (71235) | about a year ago | (#42644977)

Aye, some resin that I'm not sure will actually work. Will leave that to the Structural Engineer to slap some sense as needed. Pre-fab does seem to be the way to go, but I can envision something where first the slap is poured, rails added at the side, and a truck drops on the makerbot. Hoses for concrete are connected up, and concrete deliveries scheduled. The makebot uses forms to prep areas, more robotic assembly like a car than what we're seeing as 3d printing, and the concrete is poured (or forced under pressure) into these forms. Pre-fabbed windows/plumbed units are bolted into position using the bots, with the forms wrapped around, and more concrete placed. Couple of days later, the forms are removed, excess pour cleaned up. 30 days later, the bot lowers the struts on the roof, and attaches. Most of the construction /can/ be automated, but to stop costly time consuming problems, there'll be an operator/general contractor still on site to A) make sure everything looks good, B) the concrete/pre-fab deliveries are on time C) safety to look over each other's backs, just in case. Something that did use a lot of manpower on site will be drastically reduced, with the correct placement of builder rails on site, the 'bot' can be working on the next house as the concrete cures for the last one. Good operator/just in time deliveries should be able to handle a house on the production line a day, with the weather proof stage being hit 40 days after first pour (after slab).

Re:In general (1)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | about a year ago | (#42640673)

You see no use for a portable factory that can erect a completely custom building on demand? That it won't in any way change the way people live and work? That it won't impact the construction industry in the least? That a flock of them might come in and rebuild cities after a devastating disaster? Nothing about that strikes you as even remotely valuable?

I've no doubt that eventually it will be valuable, but this project seems like a kludge based around the buzz of a 3D printer. There's techniques out there at the moment that are similar but much easier and more economically viable (tilt up construction etc). It just seems like a clumsy attempt at a "Frist!" (sic).

Re:In general (1)

plover (150551) | about a year ago | (#42649893)

The way I see it, we need more "frists!" and not so much "psots". And I think kludges are absolutely perfect ways to prototype new ideas. Is D-Shape going to be the next big construction company? Probably not, but who knows what will come of this?

3D printers have quietly been around for over 20 years, and they're just now catching on in a much larger way. Why not see how big and practical (or impractical) they can go?

Re:In general (1)

Lemming Mark (849014) | about a year ago | (#42639949)

I imagine that at the moment it really is in the "Just to show they can" phase. I can anticipate some potential benefits of this kind of manufacture, though I'm not an expert in the field, so take it with a pinch of salt! There was an episode of Grand Designs on UK television (I think it's a Channel 4 show) where they build a house using insulation-filled plywood boxes that were CNC-cut on site. It's probably worth a watch if you can get it, since it must have similar benefits to printing (e.g. just ship raw materials to the site and then any custom parts are made just-in-time). What I've heard about that episode has put ideas in my head about that sort of technique...

Firstly, assuming a more completely automated system than the one described above, you might build a house by simply assembling a 3D printer machine around the site and letting it run. You could potentially assemble a building very quickly and with a relatively small workforce.

Secondly, as with other forms of 3D printing, there's the potential to build an irregularly-shaped or custom-designed structure just as easily (in terms of construction effort) as a standard one. Less need to mess about with what curves you can easily make, getting the right sized construction materials, etc. Just let the machine lay down walls in whatever configuration you want.

Thirdly, even in a system like the one described (printing out elements which then require finish and - presumably - putting into place) you still get the opportunity to make custom components on-site where they'll be used. Raw material can be shipped to you in a dense form, instead of transporting unwieldy, finished parts. Although you incur the cost of using the 3D printer, you do avoid the cost of having someone in a factory construct moulds for the concrete shapes you need. I can also imagine designs being checked during the build and minor alterations made before running off the next part. Design errors might be fixed in this way without greatly delaying the project.

Re:In general (1)

poity (465672) | about a year ago | (#42640389)

Construction with precast concrete has been around for a long time. They require molds, and typically are limited in form because the more molds you need to make the more expensive the project gets.

With printed concrete, 10 unique slabs should have the same, or close to the same, unit price of 10 identical slabs, which (when the price approaches precast in the near future) opens up all design possibilities for architects currently restrained by budget.

Re:In general (1)

Elfich47 (703900) | about a year ago | (#42640451)

I can see this type of technology being used for foundation work first. I expect that there will be some trial and error (like the toy building being designed above). The moment someone has a working system where you can feed concrete into an auto printed an it spits out a complete foundation in less time than it takes to lay out the forms and pour concrete and strip the forms then you have a winner. I expect some fierce competition from the pre-insulated forms companies where the form becomes the insulation for the foundation.

Re:In general (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640921)

I suspect that mobius-strip shaped building elements are not standard-issue.

Re:In general (1)

camperdave (969942) | about a year ago | (#42642297)

I suspect that mobius-strip shaped building elements are not standard-issue.

Me too. Most people want a house with an inside and at least three dimensions.

Re:In general (1)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about a year ago | (#42642037)

People have a new thing, 3d printing. They don't know what it's good for, and the printers themselves are achingly primitive, they just have a vague sense of potential. So as the technology becomes more widely available, creative types are exploring the idea-space. Over time, all the stupid ideas, like this mobius-house, will be chipped away, and what is left will be what 3d printing is good for.

Re:In general (1)

TheMathemagician (2515102) | about a year ago | (#42645453)

True but there were a lot of similar projects regarding computers in the 70s and 80s. It's just a winnowing process that needs to happen.

I live in a cave... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42639817)

you insensitive clod!

Re:I live in a cave... (1)

feedayeen (1322473) | about a year ago | (#42639957)

We can now make a completely artificial home look just like not just any cave, but your cave, you'll feel right at home!

Can't wait till it's combined with a bakery. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42639831)

Then we can finally build a house out of Gingerbread.

More bullshit (1)

HornWumpus (783565) | about a year ago | (#42639845)

Not the first printed house.

Perhaps the first house built with printed concrete forms.

Re:More bullshit (1)

Jarik C-Bol (894741) | about a year ago | (#42640495)

Thats what I was going to say. I remember years ago, someone was '3d printing' houses using a giant Cartesian/Gantry type machine that placed a special mix of concrete. It worked just like current 3d printing really, just made pass after pass, laying down layers, building up the walls. The advantage there was it did not need a filler in the rooms, it just used a mix that dried quickly enough. If i recall, it could print a 500 square foot house in about 5 days. The guy that was creating the system hoped to be able to use it to print emergency housing after disasters.

Cool - I just poured a building (2)

pubwvj (1045960) | about a year ago | (#42640021)

3D printing buildings is a cool idea. It can be done in masonry, that is to say fiber reinforced concrete, which would produce low cost, high mass, highly energy efficient buildings. I just did one like this but poured it rather than 3D printing it. Sort of the same thing. 1.6 million pounds of concrete later we have a super insulated building that is built as bottles within bottles for extreme energy efficiency. In our case it is an on-farm USDA inspected slaughterhouse and butcher shop for our family farm.

See: http://sugarmtnfarm.com/butchershop [sugarmtnfarm.com]

I developed many of the techniques when we built our house in a similar manner. Prior to that we did even smaller models as animal shelters and desktop models. All along I fancied that much of this could be done just like 3D printing. The pumper we use is not all that different.

Re:Cool - I just poured a building (1)

brad3378 (155304) | about a year ago | (#42647539)

You have a very interesting website. I especially liked your innovative re-use of your old Styrofoam. I wish I had mod points to give you.

I had no idea it took so much wood to tackle a project like that. How much money did you need to spend on wood for that project? Will you be able to reuse the wood after it is removed from the concrete? Do you think a 3D printed home would save on material costs after you factor in the cost of the wood?

Re:Cool - I just poured a building (1)

pubwvj (1045960) | about a year ago | (#42661401)

I have all the data to figure out the question on how much wood but haven't done it yet. I would guess about $30,000 in wood to build all the forms, scaffolding, braces and walers. All of it is reusable and in fact some of it has already been used in building two other projects including our house:

http://sugarmtnfarm.com/cottage [sugarmtnfarm.com]

seven years ago.

Decades ago I dreamed up the idea of 3D printing buildings - I was an engineer involved with laser printing and I was also pouring concrete on the side for our own projects using a pump truck. Great tool. I fantasized about how to get the material coming out of the nozzle to harden quickly enough to 3D print in big droplets an entire building. Never did that though I did do some work on the chemistry and materials that would have been needed.

For our projects we've just gone the molding route - e.g., build big molds, pour in liquid stone (concrete) with fiber reinforcing (steels already in place) and let it harden.

I still think that 3D printing of buildings would be a great way to do it. With our molding we build all our conduit and plumbing right into the walls, floors and ceilings. With 3D printing one could do even better. The building could be a giant machine, the wiring could be printed.

I bet we'll see that within a century on mass scale.

What I like about masonry is that the buildings are so permanent, low maintenance and energy efficient. Fire proof too - that's really nice.

Sounds inefficient. (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about a year ago | (#42640031)

The team are working with mathematician and artist Rinus Roelofs to develop the house, which they estimate will take around 18 months to complete.

How long does it take a conventional architect and builder to complete a house? I figure an architect can design a conventional house in 4 months. But most conventional builds start with an existing design and customize it a little bit based on the lot and customer preferences. I know you can build one in about 3 weeks with conventional methods presuming you can schedule all the work crews to be on site on the soonest day the house is ready for them. That's bare lot to ready-to-move-in. It normally takes much longer to get a home built but that's because most of the time it sits idle waiting for the next work crew to show up.

Re:Sounds inefficient. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640155)

I know you can build one in about 3 weeks with conventional methods

A wooden house maybe.
This is Holland, we build houses out of bricks and concrete with insulation everywhere.

Re:Sounds inefficient. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640535)

if you built houses out of wood, you wouldn't need life jackets.
Now if this was a printable dike, or windmill....

Re:Sounds inefficient. (1)

50000BTU_barbecue (588132) | about a year ago | (#42640695)

Maybe we can send you some Quebec consultants to get into the 21st century? We will show you how to use pressed cardboard, glued plastic and compressed sawdust everywhere, and as long as the condo brochure has smiling models sipping espresso people will buy condos...

We can also show you how to have the highest taxes in North American and still manage to have to pay for every goddamn government service, AND have corrupt municipalities that can't even do road repairs properly, even though they cost 50% more than Ontario's! *AND* still have pavement that buckles and cracks within years!

Re:Sounds inefficient. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640237)

Have you looked at the pictures of this house?

It's not a conventional one at all. More like exotic art.

How this technique would apply to a more traditional design or how long it would take to build this house using other techniques is beyond me.

Re:Sounds inefficient. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42641331)

I know you can build one in about 3 weeks with conventional methods presuming you can schedule all the work crews to be on site on the soonest day the house is ready for them.

Even better, build it in modules in a factory, truck the modules to the site and bolt it together. The tolerances and quality will probably be much better.

Re:Sounds inefficient. (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about a year ago | (#42644141)

Yep. That's also becoming conventional, at least with respect to wall sections and roof trusses.

Re:Sounds inefficient. (1)

cdrudge (68377) | about a year ago | (#42646045)

Depends on what exactly they are designing. If the house is nothing more than a box with a door and a window or two, then 18 months is ridiculously long. If the house is a 400 sq meter completely custom sprawling house and the owner has gone through multiple iterations of different designs, then 18 months doesn't seem all that unreasonable. If everything is being cast in stone before everything is printed, you get one shot to make sure your wiring, plumbing, hvac, etc are all places exactly where you want them.

Re:Sounds inefficient. (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about a year ago | (#42654191)

Depends on what exactly they are designing. If the house is nothing more than a box with a door and a window or two, then 18 months is ridiculously long. If the house is a 400 sq meter completely custom sprawling house and the owner has gone through multiple iterations of different designs, then 18 months doesn't seem all that unreasonable. If everything is being cast in stone before everything is printed, you get one shot to make sure your wiring, plumbing, hvac, etc are all places exactly where you want them.

Sounds like a great reason not to cast everything in stone.

I have to wonder about architects. (1)

dprimary (215604) | about a year ago | (#42640105)

Not that most construction is not already made by adding layers of materials on top of layer placed before it.

Housing in the Dutch capital (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640137)

Did anyone in here actually try to find a decent apartment in Amsterdam?
I think the Dutch would be better off repairing and painting their existing houses/apartments.

Basics first... (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | about a year ago | (#42640171)

They seem to be doing a lot planning for the final design, with either planning for or having done the basics first. (Prototype testing etc...) For that matter, the printer's website is long on hype, short on real information or accomplishments.

Re:Basics first... (1)

Animats (122034) | about a year ago | (#42640987)

the printer's website is long on hype, short on real information or accomplishments.

I noticed that. The site makes claims about how strong the material is, but they compare it to marble. Marble is brittle. If you drop a standard 0.400" marble tile on a hard surface, it will probably shatter. The tensile strength of stone is poor. Stone structures are usually designed to have almost everything in compression. Stone beams are limited to narrow windows and doors.

A machine for turning out heavy cardboard forms for concrete might be more useful. Concrete columns are often cast inside heavy cardboard tubes. This is called Sonotube construction. Once the concrete sets, the cardboard is peeled off. More complex surfaces have to be built up as metal or wooden forms. There are sets of metal forms for complex, but usually rather boring standard designs. "Manhole" and "stairs" form sets are popular. There are sets of standard form parts which are bolted together to make the forms for concrete buildings. The end result tends to be rather Lego-like, but it's fast and cheap.

A system for making concrete forms with organic curves would be valuable to architects. Decorative surfaces are sometimes made by machining custom form inserts [concreteartforms.com] to put designs on a surface. But that's limited to surface decoration, signs, and such. A more general 3D system would be useful. But it doesn't have to make stone. Heavy cardboard or dense foam would be enough for many concrete form applications.

Calling it a house seems a bit much (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640223)

If that 3d render is actually what it's expected to look like, that's not architecture. Four rooms, relatively identical proportions, no relation to site (no site really), no definition of space. Hell, where's the entrance? How does that thing handle light and air? At least they bothered to put in the obligatory Barcelona chair entourage.

Re:Calling it a house seems a bit much (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42641911)

I agree. I didn't notice any rooms, honestly...it looked more like one continuous, möbius hallway. No plumbing, electricity, lighting, or noticeable doors. Nonstop unopenable windows with no reasonable way to clean them, plunked down in a desert of clay dust. I understand that my bourgeois taste in homes isn't this guy's goal, but this isn't useful for anything. He should bill himself as an artist, creating an experiential sculpture.

Re:Calling it a house seems a bit much (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42642535)

I'm the AC above. I've been in the architecture field for close to 8 years now. That thing wouldn't work as a functional building and doesn't bring anything to the table theoretically. It's a pretty good sign that just because people think they could be an architect doesn't make it so.

samzenpus, is a juggalo (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640623)

"[...] Architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars of Universe Architecture will collaborate with Italian inventor Enrico Dini, who developed the D-Shape printer, to build the house, which has a looping form based on a Möbius strip. 3D printing website as saying: 'It will be the first 3D printed building in the world. [...]"

Yo, English, how the fuck does that work?

"You wouldn't download a house" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640629)

Yes, yes I would.
And a car too.

If there were an X-Prize for this... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640733)

You could bet it would NOT be the first 3-D printed house. They said it would take 18 months to complete. Given proper motivation, I'm sure someone else could design and build a sufficiently large 3-D printer, hell... he could 3-D PRINT ONE... that could build a house in a lot less time than 18 months. Incidentally, sand and a binder? Why not plastic with reinforcing fibers mixed in? What would be REALLY impressive, and much easier to do in plastic and metal if the printer had a print head for each, I would think, is to 3-D print it with all its parts in place, including the plumbing, fixtures, electrical and communications wiring, and even the FURNITURE!!! You just need to offer a big wad of cash. Then You could just transport bulk raw-materials to where they need homes, and a small 3-D printer, that in turn would churn out the big 3-D printer you use for the house, (you don't even have to transport that, you just print it on-site,) then start cranking out houses. Can you imagine? A hurricane sweeps through, and a day later you deploy a dozen of these things, then start printing houses? Maybe you churn the out one a day? Maybe faster? All depends on the design, I think.

It could probably be done in less than a year, again with proper motivation. So suck on that, dutch architect! :)

Video of 3D construction at TEDx (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42640815)

Check out the video at minute 6:43 were the University of Southern California professor Behrokh Khoshnevis shows his working prototype of a large 3d printer constructiing a wall. Pretty cool stuff.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JdbJP8Gxqog [youtube.com]

saying and doing (1)

AndyKron (937105) | about a year ago | (#42640867)

Saying and doing are two different things. I'll wait and see. BTW: where's the toilet in that thing?

The Expo House (1)

westlake (615356) | about a year ago | (#42641093)

Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater [fallingwater.org] is memorably integrated into the landscape. But it is also and unmistakably a home.

Wright's version of modernism was very much rooted in 19th century America. In the land, in the American culture, in the idea of home and domesticity, in warm materials that came out of the earth, wood and stone and so forth. The Europeans had a whole different set of priorities.
They were really Utopian socialists. They wanted to remake the traditional family. They envisioned a whole modern culture in which society itself would change. Wright was trying to create a different kind of architectural expression for a traditional culture which he very much believed in. ---- Paul Goldberger, Architecture Critic

Fallingwater Interior [pbs.org]

This Mobius strip looks more like a pavilion design for a World's Fair.

If I am reading the renderings correctly, it does not have an unbroken interior. Navigating from one "room" to the next looks to be quite a hike.

I don't see how you organize the interior space that is any way livable.

Re:The Expo House (1)

Shavano (2541114) | about a year ago | (#42644199)

This Mobius strip looks more like a pavilion design for a World's Fair.

If I am reading the renderings correctly, it does not have an unbroken interior. Navigating from one "room" to the next looks to be quite a hike.

I don't see how you organize the interior space that is any way livable.

It's incredibly inefficient in every way. There's no reason for any stairs, but it wastes a huge amount of its space making them. Way too much outer wall, way too much distance between rooms that are too small for the land it occupies. But some sucker will buy it and will be proud to show it off until he decides it's unliveable and moves out to a more normal looking structure.

Contour Crafting (1)

JimDot (519946) | about a year ago | (#42641173)

USC has been working on 3D printing of buildings for a while now. Professor Behrokh Khoshnevis has developed a process he calls contour crafting that builds up a wall by adding concrete to it one contour at a time. You can find a TEDx video here. They're currently working with NASA to see if this technique can be used on the moon. But it doesn't seem like they've moved beyond the prototype stage.

Communism (1)

RedHackTea (2779623) | about a year ago | (#42641299)

So eventually we won't need construction workers at all? As much as I hate to say it, with all of this technology we will have to merge into a communist-like country (like communist mixed with democracy). How else can people live if there are no actual jobs? And for technology maintenance, you really don't need that many people or requires too much schooling (even if it's not difficult).

Re:Communism (1)

darkat (697582) | about a year ago | (#42641545)

good question.. If most if not all of the jobs can be carried out by machines how can a growing population earn a decent living? I think it depends on who owns the land and the means of production. In a capitalistic world in which only the rich can afford this kind technology this will end up with war and famine, in a communist world in which all belongs to the state maybe people will share the output of the production, in theory. We saw however that amongst communist there are people that are more equal than others and so ...

Re:Communism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42645249)

might very well be the other way around. We'll still need a number of workers (machine maintenance, last-minute 'details' like plumbing, carpenting and electrics, etc.), and if this takes off and makes construction cheaper (yes that's a big assumption), people will perhaps start building again. The construction industry is dropping fast over here, because people don't build new houses anymore.

mod doOwn (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42641377)

Every chance I got project somewhere Politics openly. provide sodas, Fact: *BSD IS A you get distracted THINKING ABOUT IT. won't be shouti2ng with the work, or

retarded website for innovative technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42643003)

means the technology can't possibly be innovative. I mean for fucks sake they use flash to make hyperlinks. Not only that, but the menu flash is different then the content flash. Not only that, but clicking the menu hyperlinks doesn't change the content in the existing flash, but instead loads a whole new page, containing 2 new flash objects for menu and content.

the stupidity astounds.

Next step (1)

jandersen (462034) | about a year ago | (#42645615)

Well, perhaps not quite the next step, but I can already imagine sending one of those to Mars in pieces to build a physical base for manned missions. It would have to be self-assembling and able to produce its own building materials on site, but it seems feasible to me. Not easy, but possible.

Grand Designs (1)

coofercat (719737) | about a year ago | (#42646089)

There was an episode of Grand Designs here in the UK where two guys built a house predominantly out of machine cut plywood that they formed into boxes. They stuck the the boxes together and pretty soon had a house. Whilst not 3d printed per-se, it's the first machine-made house I've ever seen.

I do wonder if it would be possible to make a wall building bot. You put bricks in a hopper, cement powder in another hopper and connect it all to the water supply. Out comes your new garden wall. It's not too much of a stretch to have it skip out sections to put windows in, and then you're 80% towards the main structure of your house.

Re:Grand Designs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42647847)

Wall building robots do exist.

I remember seeing one in the warehouse at DRS Technologies in Milwaukee. DRS Technologies owned the building but leased the extra space in their warehouse to another group - maybe it was Habitat for Humanity? Although I never saw it running, the robot was pretty cool. It had a place where it would grab 2x4s from a giant pallet, cut them down to size, drill them for holes, and then attach them together. After the walls were assembled, they would be hoisted into position at the job site with a big crane.

I've googled for wall building robots but I've been unable to find any references to this on the internet.

Compressed earth is a much better choice sandstone (1)

cryingpoet (472652) | about a year ago | (#42648541)

I love the idea of a 3D printer house. The original concept from Contour Crafting [abstractdns.com] using quick dry concrete and plaster of Paris is better than the man made sand stone used by D Shape [d-shape.com] in both construction time and durability. The problem is how to add rebar to either design to make them earthquake resistant. Using Giant Compressed Earth Blocks (GCEB) [youtube.com] are more environmentally friendly idea since no concrete is used. A machine can extrude giant earthen Legos that can then be assembled. Rebar can then be pounded or drilled in before the blocks cure in place.

How do they intend to put the rebar in the D Shape blocks?

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...