As first reported on the Directory’s Industry Blog, A novel 3D printing technology was unveiled by a Russian-American start-up Vertical Printing Technology (VPT) that would be able to address one of the major issues limiting adoption of construction 3D printing: multi-story housing.
The technology is a hybrid of 3D printing and highly automated sliding formwork. Its key innovative feature is the ability to “print” floor slabs, columns and lay reinforcements, enabling construction of high-rises as opposed to single-story houses. This would transform the major part of the construction industry worldwide by reducing in half the cost and time of erecting monolithic frames of commercial and residential high-rises.
Constructing multi-story buildings requires significant manual labor and time. Come to think of it, construction is one of the only industries that yet remains to be automated. Current technologies only allow you to “3D print” single-floor structures with no ability to print floors slabs for multi-story buildings. Is it possible to automate printing multi-story buildings at a fraction of the cost and time?
With a unique, patent-pending technology, VPT cracked automated multi-story construction to decrease costs by 50% at a rate of 4 meters per day. The company calls it vertical printing as it uses automated, additive layering technology to simultaneously “print” vertical columns and floor slabs. The system then positions and secures floors horizontally for on-site construction with minimal manual labor.