3D Printing ProcessesConstruction 3D Printing

SQ4D completes construction of 1,900-sq-ft 3D printed home

SQ4D has upped the ante in the American construction 3D printing game. The company, which last July unveiled a 500-square-foot home it 3D printed in under 12 hours, has just completed the construction of an even more impressive structure. The new building, 3D printed in just 48 hours (over an eight day period), spans 1,900 square feet and cost less than $6,000 in materials to build.

SQ4D’s 1,900-square-foot structure was 3D printed using its patent-pending ARCS technology (Autonomous Robotic Construction System). Capable of building structures on-site, SQ4D’s ARCS technology uses a digitally driven robotic system to print foundations, exterior walls, interior walls, utility conduits and more.

The patent-pending process is notable for its efficiency. According to SQ4D, the ARCS process dramatically reduces the amount of labour required to build a home (to as little as three people). The technology is also designed for low power consumption, meaning that homes can be built using less energy and resources than more traditional construction methods.

Sq4D 1900-sq-ft 3D printed home
S-Squared 3D printed a 500-square-foot home in 12 hours in July 2019

At this stage, SQ4D is able to 3D print 1,900-square-feet in 48 hours (spread out over eight days). However, it says print speeds will be increased (to roughly double) as it continues to enhance the ARCS process.

“ARCS achieves faster build times by eliminating and consolidating over 20 manual labor intensive processes (siding, framing, sheathing, etc.),” the company says. “This revolutionary technology will be replacing and eliminating more expensive and inferior building materials, causing the printed structures to be stronger and safer. Utilizing concrete will reduce the cost by at least 30%, as well as making the structure more fire resistant than traditional methods. This home will have the strength to last into the next century.”

The title of largest 3D printed home or building has been claimed by many at this point. And we are not entirely sure the title is the most important thing to highlight when looking at the evolution of 3D printed homes. It seems that the more relevant figures to look at are how the print speed, size and cost are related, as well as how viable the technology is.

Other recent developments in the field include a two-storey, 640-square-meter 3D printed building in Dubai, which was unveiled in October 2019; and ICON’s continued work in Tabasco, Mexico, where it is 3D printing 500-square-foot homes for the remote community. Most recently, the company announced it had successfully completed the first two homes there. By the end of the project, it aims to 3D print 50 homes total.

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Tess Boissonneault

Tess Boissonneault moved from her home of Montreal, Canada to the Netherlands in 2014 to pursue a master’s degree in Media Studies at the University of Amsterdam. It was during her time in Amsterdam that she became acquainted with 3D printing technology and began writing for a local additive manufacturing news platform. Now based in France, Tess has over two and a half years experience writing, editing and publishing additive manufacturing content with a particular interest in women working within the industry. She is an avid follower of the ever-evolving AM industry.

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2 Comments

  1. How earthquake resistant will these 3D ‘printed’ homes prove to be?
    Constructed quickly is great, but the ability to resist earthquakes, hurricanes & tornadoes is essential. Consider where rapid construction is important – usually after a natural disaster in areas subjected to the events previously mentioned.

  2. Great point. First you do need to consider all 3D printed houses today are 1-story houses, so Earthquake resistance is less of an issue at this point (still one, but less so). Another thing you should consider is that there are ways to make 3D printed constructions more Earthquake resistant through geometry and through material science. For the first, however, you’ll probably need to implement a powder bed (binder jetting) kind of approach which provides more geometric freedom. For the second, 3D printing has been driving significant advancements in the composition of the cement materials.

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