3D printing has the potential to revolutionize the way humans manufacture and build things, from the small scale to the very large. By combining robots with 3D printing, KUKA partner Branch Technology, working with the architects at Gould Turner Group, is fundamentally shifting the way architects and designers approach not only the building of a final structure, but also the way that structure is designed from beginning to end.
The video shows the architects using composite materials (chopped carbon fiber reinforced ABS pellets) to 3D print ultra strong scaffolds that can also hold traditional building materials. And the results are not just visually impressive but also highly practical, like so many natural treebranch-like structures.
Nature builds sustainably and efficiently. Material comes at a premium. Form is unlimited. Complexity is free. Its results are full of beauty and wonder. Branch Technology is changing the way that we build, by asking the question, “what if you could build like nature?”
Branch is moving to a minimal material solution. Instead of asking, “how much can we 3D print?”, we are asking, “how little?” Its Cellular Fabrication (C-Fab) technology enables this change. Branch Technologies creates the complexity of a cellular construct into which economical construction materials are applied to provide the function and strength of a wall assembly. Composite structures are created using the same methodology with which nature builds. Like bones in our body or trees in the forest, optimized geometries are made strong and functional by the material filling the matrix. The interior and exterior skins can then be finished in any fashion.
At the heart of Cellular Fabrication is Branch Technology’s patented freeform 3D printing process. Freeform printing in open space is not constrained to the slow, layer-by-layer build process of traditional 3D printing. The company’s algorithm creates both the geometry and robotic motion to construct complex geometries in open space, without the use of support materials or highly controlled build environments. United with tried and true building materials and methods, this delivers a product that is both robust and revolutionary.