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Building From a 3D Printer

Enrico Dini's Gaudi-Inspired Sand and Epoxy Structures

— May 7, 2009 — Eco
Architects have been using 3D printers to model designs for a few years, but now they can print the building—at least good parts of it—on site in its full size.

By suspending rigging over a building area, the huge 3D ‘D-Shape’ printing system deposits sand followed by an inorganic binding ink. No water is used since the component parts are ‘mixed’ when they meet outside of the inkjet nozzles. Accuracy is within 25 dpi.

Not only is the output size impressive, the 3D printing technology allows previously impractical or impossible forms to be created with relative ease and cost-efficacy. Since the process doesn’t use cement, CO2 emissions are also reduced.

The video above demonstrates how a small-scale 3D printer is used to produce architectural models.
Trend Themes
1. On-site 3D Printing - There is an opportunity for companies to adopt on-site 3D printing technology to reduce cement use and CO2 emissions.
2. Large-scale 3D Printing - Large-scale 3D printing technology provides an opportunity for architects and designers to create previously impractical or impossible forms with ease and cost-effectiveness.
3. Inorganic Binding Ink - The use of inorganic binding ink in 3D printing technology provides an opportunity to reduce water use and emissions in the building industry.
Industry Implications
1. Architecture - The architecture industry can adopt large-scale, on-site 3D printing technology to create innovative and cost-effective designs while reducing cement use and CO2 emissions.
2. Construction - The construction industry can benefit from the use of on-site 3D printing technology to produce building components, reducing waste and assembly time.
3. Inkjet Technology - The inkjet technology industry has an opportunity to develop inorganic binding ink for 3D printing, providing a sustainable and cost-effective solution for the building and construction industry.
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