Although 3D printers have been with us since the 1980s, it has garnered global recognition just recently. 3D printing has been seen in numerous applications and industries like automobiles, medicine, computers, and also construction. But is construction the future of 3d printing? Is it up to the point where we can finally consider it an alternative to conventional construction methods, or does it still need time? That’s what we’re here to find out.
We’ll go over the benefits of 3D printing and the type of technologies that are available when we discuss additive manufacturing.
Advantages Of 3D Printing In Construction
Given how competitive the construction industry is, 3D printing provides contractors with a unique way to differentiate themselves from their rivals. To show some validity, here are several future possibilities of 3d printing to the construction industry:
Reduce Supply Costs
WinSun, a Chinese 3D printing-bass construction company, believes that 3d printing future will save construction firms at least 50% of costs that go into building a house. This could be the holy grail for construction managers who possess such technology and result in increased competition with the industry. And with a boost in competition, We can expect lower prices for consumers that would allow them to own a property instead of just renting it.
One of the greatest advantages of the 3D printers after juice to construction workers is the decline of injuries in construction. Knowing how construction is difficult using concrete – even dangerous at times – this is a much-needed improvement. This helps both workers and employers; workers can do their job easier, and employers won’t have to bother with worker’s compensation paperwork since there will be fewer injuries to deal with.
With 3D printing at hand, production time in the construction industry will greatly be reduced. The reason why this is so is that the machines operate very quickly. Some of them are able to manufacture A Home of 600 to 800 square feet in under 24 hours. And because they’re completely automated, this eliminates any chance of human error.
Virtually Zero Waste Of Material
By far the main highlight of the future of 3d printing technology is the number of production costs that are saved on material waste. This is because 3D printers, accompanied by robotic arms (which we will get to in a bit) only uses the material that they require.
3D printers cost less than conventional construction processes and techniques overall. This is taking into account the reduction of time, material cost, and injuries, which allows the company to see dramatic increases in their profits.
Better Project Planning
Design is an absolutely necessary part of every project plan. And with 3D printing, construction companies can create quick and affordable models to give clients a better visual representation of any project as well as isolate problem areas and prevent any delays.
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Technologies Of 3D Printing In Construction (Additive Manufacturing)
This is the part where we now talk about Additive Manufacturing. We’ll take a closer look at each technology and then see the kind of advantages they present the construction filled with.
Robotic Arm Extruders
Also known as contour crafting, robotic arm extruders allow you to build material that is being deposited to develop a large-scale 3D model and a smooth surface finish. It functions in a matter of how FDM desktop 3D printers work. Rails are placed around the building ground to allow the robotic arm to move back and forth in order to extrude concrete material from the nozzle layer by layer. This is the best 3D printing technology that can be used to build extra-large buildings and structures.
Sand Layers Joined Together
An Italian architect by the name of Enrico Dini is the one who popularized the technology of 3D-printed houses. He also made waves using a 3D printing technique with the use of his ‘D-Shape’ 3D printer. This technique is more similar to industrial 3D printing such as Jet Fusion or SLS.
This machine focuses on powder binding which allows it to use a binder to solidify a layer of material. The sand layers are deposited depending on the preferred thickness before a printhead starts pouring droplets (the binder) in order to solidify the sand. With this machine, large structures measuring up to 6 cubic meters in size can be created.
And lastly, is the technology that allows us to 3D print metal structures. It was introduced by Dutch company MX3D which developed a future of 3d printing in construction technique called WAAM (Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing), where we can use a robot, which drops 2 kilos of material an hour to print 3D metal structures in 6-axis. The company combined the robot with a welding machine so it could function as a 3D printer that works along with its own software.