Construction 3D Printing

The AEC industry consists of three separate segments: architecture, engineering and construction. Thus, by integrating these seemingly separate entities into a single industry, ACE professionals can work more efficiently. For architects, engineers, and contractors alike, construction 3D printing represents the full integration of these approaches.

Over the past two decades, these segments have undergone a deep transformation by adopting digital and 3D technologies. As a result, architecture first, and engineering shortly thereafter, have already embraced the digital manufacturing workflow. On the other hand, the construction segment has only recently begun to look at 3D printing and the use of digital additive technologies. The potential to replace “analogic” practices and manual labor is a huge opportunity.

Change is inevitable

While it appears inevitable, the shift toward construction 3D printing is not going to be an easy and seamless transition. Furthermore, the construction industry has typically been slow to embrace technology. This is now changing for the good. The use of technology to deliver projects is accelerating. The appropriate use of the correct technologies can help to deliver successful projects.

From just 10 firms active in 2017, 3dpbm‘s 3D Printing Business Directory now lists over 40 Construction 3D Printer Hardware Manufacturers and nearly 50 Construction 3D Printing Service Providers (some companies are the same as hardware manufacturers also provide services). The most relevant trend that manifested over the past three-year period is that large material firms (such as St Gobain, Heidelberg Cements/Italcementi and LaFargeHolceim) and several large real estate investment funds are becoming involved directly through partnerships and acquisitions.

A global opportunity

Relevant initiatives are taking place in every continent, with markets in China, Russia, MEMA and Europe (mainly Holland, Denmark, Germany but also Spain and Italy) leading the way. North America is now becoming much more actively involved and taking up a leadership role in many approaches (especially in terms of off-grid and sustainable housing or defense applications). Relevant opportunities for affordable 3D printed housing are also expected to rise in emerging and developing economies.

Multi-story (up to 4) capabilities are now starting to become available. Furthermore, construction 3D printing is not just for housing: applications include restorations, bridges, pedestrian passageways, river revetment walls, statues, furniture, fences, fountains… In this rapidly developing context, the multi-trillion dollar construction segment is soon to be dramatically disrupted.

  • The Ohio State University's CDME receives COBOD’s BOD2. The research will be conducted in partnership with Pantheon3D.

    The Ohio State University’s CDME receives COBOD’s BOD2

    Pantheon3D, a Youngstown-based additive manufacturing construction company, has taken delivery of COBOD’s BOD2 3D construction printer at The Ohio State University’s Center for Design and Manufacturing Excellence (CDME). CDME collaborates with Pantheon3D using COBOD technology to improve Ohio’s portfolio of affordable housing. Pantheon3D aims to provide high schools, trade unions,…

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  • Diamond Age releases its first 3D printed homes - created using the company's 'Factory-in-the-Field' robotics-as-a-service system.

    Diamond Age releases its first 3D printed homes

    Diamond Age, a full-stack robotics innovator with the mission of using automation to make homeownership more affordable, has recently been revealed as the creator of the technology that was used to print Century Complete’s Mountain View Estates in Casa Grande, Arizona. The 3D printed homes are the first to be…

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  • CyBe Construction expands to North America. The new branch, based in Florida, will focus on the country’s sustainable housing market.

    CyBe Construction expands to North America

    Dutch 3D concrete printing company, CyBe, has just opened its North American branch in Florida, and is planning several sustainable housing projects in the United States. Founded in 2013, CyBe Construction brings a decade of knowledge and experience from worldwide 3D concrete printing projects. “We see excellent opportunities to expand…

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  • Dubai to create world's first 3D printed mosque with the capacity for 600 worshippers by the time construction finishes in early 2025.

    Dubai to create world’s first 3D printed mosque

    The Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities Department in Dubai (IACAD) has announced its plans to build the world’s first 3D printed Mosque. The construction of the 2,000 square meter mosque, in Bur Dubai, is expected to start in October 2023, and have the capacity for 600 worshippers by early 2025.…

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  • Century Complete launches first community of 3D printed homes - infusing signature floor plans with smooth concrete composite walls.

    Century Complete launches first community of 3D printed homes

    Century Communities, one of the top US homebuilders and an industry leader in online sales, has launched its first community of 3D printed homes, under the Century Complete brand. The new homes infuse signature floor plans with smooth interior and exterior concrete composite walls that offer durability, sustainability, and noise…

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  • ICON awarded $57.2 million from NASA for in-space construction. Project Olympus focusses on the development of space-based construction.

    ICON awarded $57.2 million from NASA for in-space construction

    ICON, a leader in advanced construction technologies and large-scale 3D printing, received a contract awarded under Phase III of NASA’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program. The nearly $60 million contract builds upon previous NASA and Department of Defense funding for ICON’s Project Olympus to research and develop space-based construction…

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  • GUtech Oman 3D prints three new buildings in just 8 days

    GUtech, the German University of Technology in Oman and a pioneer in construction 3D printing, completed the 3D printing of 3 new buildings in Duqm, 540 km from the capital of Oman, where GU Tech is located. The construction took just 8 days and it represents a performance nobody has…

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  • UMaine, in partnership with ORNL, prints BioHome3D using bio-based materials - such as wood fibers and bio-resins.

    UMaine prints BioHome3D using wood fibers and bio-resins

    The University of Maine (UMaine) Advanced Structures and Composites Center (ASCC) has unveiled ‘BioHome3D’ – the first 3D printed house made entirely with bio-based materials. BioHome3D was developed with funding from the US Department of Energy’s Hub and Spoke program between the UMaine and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). Partners…

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  • Emergent3D 3D prints house on site of California wildfires

    Approximately 200 miles north of San Francisco, surrounded by national forests, lies Redding with its population of 100,000. Not one of California’s most famous locations, the city was affected by the numerous forest fires that hit the city. Redding is experiencing more than 100 fires per year. The Redding area…

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  • ICON and Lennar started 3D printing a 100-home community

    ICON, a leader of advanced construction technologies pioneering large-scale 3D printing, and Lennar, one of the nation’s leading homebuilders, have begun building the largest community of 3D printed homes in Georgetown, Texas. Reservations will begin in 2023. The 100-home community was Co-designed by BIG-Bjarke Ingels Group. Situated north of Austin…

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