You didn’t read wrong! With the evolution of the additive manufacturing process, it is now possible to build 3D Printed Houses. It surely is a great thing!. In this blog post, we will show you examples that work, how much their cost, how it was built, and specific situations that show us how to help those who need
Imagine that your dream house’s digital design project leaves the notebook and goes straight to a giant 3D printer, beyond to shaping the walls at a lower cost, could reduce waste, and shorten the delivery time.
This is what big construction and design companies have already launched in several companies like Brazil, France, the United States, and Italy. These companies are interested in using this technology to shape a whole neighborhood (and why not cities) in the years to come, mostly for low-income people. One interesting fact is how this could help a lot of people. In Brazil, for example, there are 6.9 million families without having a place to live. With the 4.0 industry revolution, 3D Printed houses are becoming a reality.
We separate some good examples for you to read. Check it out!
The first occupied 3D printed house – Nantes, France
In the city of Nantes, France has the first inhabited 3D printed house produced. The project, launched in 2018, is a partnership between the city hall and the University of Nantes and was occupied by a couple with five children, who used to live in a precarious house in the city. The house took 54 hours to print. It took another four months to install the windows, doors, and roof. It cost 20% less than a property made using the traditional method. The building has 95 square meters with four bedrooms and curved walls, to reduce the effects of moisture.
To make the house walls, the architects built molds, which were filled with cement. Some systems in the house are connected to the internet, and the space is entirely adapted for people with disabilities. The 3D printer does the heaviest service, and its finishing took ten days.
Another interesting aspect is that the house does not need to have any heating or air conditioning system. The house can keep temperatures balanced.
The responsible startup is still evaluating ways to enter the construction market. Therefore, the 3D printed house is not yet sold there. Have you ever thought of living in a house like that? Sounds interesting. So in this example, we can see it is possible to make houses easier, cheaper, and faster.
Sustainable 3D printed house – Italy
Launched in October 2018 in Italy, Gaia House was built with a 3D printer from a mixture of soil and organic waste resulting from rice plantation. The architects’ idea was to create a sustainable house, which would generate the least impact on the environment during construction, but also on the maintenance of the space. The concrete was made from earth, straw, and chopped rice husks and lime. The company that built the prototype, each hectare of irrigated rice, can be transformed into 100 square meters of the built area using this mixture. The walls of Gaia were erected in ten days and cost 1000 dollars, approximately.
Shelters for poor communities – Austin, Texas
In the same year, the first house built by a 3D printer in the United States was presented. The prototype, launched in Austin, Texas, is the result of a partnership between New Story, a non-profit organization that serves homeless people, and ICON, a technology company, focused on large 3D projects. The house was built in less than 48 hours by a large printer called Vulcan, designed to work in areas where there are restrictions on the supply of electricity, drinking water, and skilled labor.
After the first house is announced, the project’s objective is to build low-cost neighborhoods in less than 24 hours in Latin American countries. The companies estimate that each unit will cost US$ 6,000 and guarantee that the material is three times more resistant than ordinary concrete – which is very interesting for areas subject to weather. The first neighborhood is expected to be constructed this year in El Salvador to design houses for 400 people. The partnership companies are also studying to spread the project to other countries in Latin America, such as Haiti, Bolivia, and Mexico.
3D Printed House: Good natural sources alternatives – Nevada, United States
A factory in Nevada has a 3D printer capable of producing parts for small houses construction capable of running without any energy, water, and basic sanitation systems connection.
The prefabricated houses operate on solar energy – including heating and cooling. An optional process collects water from the humidity of the outside air and dispenses with the connection to the city’s water supply system. The project is one of the first in the US to adopt a shower that cleans and recycles water.
The prefabricated house, from the startup PassivDom, was designed to use as little natural resources as possible. What allowed the units not to rely on external energy was a polymer compound, discovered while the company was experimenting with materials that could increase energy efficiency.
According to Max Gerbut, the company’s CEO, the material is strong and efficient and has helped to build houses with 20 times less energy consumption than traditional buildings. The startup also noticed that it could generate enough electricity for the home using solar panels on the roof. Usually, homes with solar panels cannot cover the energy needed for electric heating, especially in cold climates. To heat bathwater, an activity that usually requires a lot of energy, the small house uses a shower from Orbital Systems with technology that recycles water in a closed circuit. In some shower models, sensors monitor water flowing into the drain
If the water is released for purification, it flows through filters that remove impurities as small as bacteria. Then, it is cleaned with UV light before reused. As a result, water is constantly heated. According to the company, this system saves, on average, 90% of water and 80% of energy.
3D printed house: A new investment – China
A house to be built and ready to live takes months, but the Chinese company WinSun decided to invest in a new market and with great results. It creates homes with modern 3D printing technology quickly and at a low cost. In just 24 hours, they built ten isolated, and compact houses, made from waste material for less than US$ 5,000 each.
This new technique allows the construction of affordable housing in the short term. To be possible and perform this process, four 3D printers measuring 32 meters in length, 6.6 in height, and 10 in width were used. The company used a mixture of cement and construction waste to build the house’s walls, layer by layer. The recipe for quick-drying cement is secret, but it is made entirely from recycled materials.
The company’s CEO,Ma Yihe, said the company is ready to print any digital design that their customer needs because it is fast and cheap. Each house can be printed at $ 5,000 because the process is very fast, and there are few costs not only for materials but also for workers. But the cool thing is that this type of construction is environmentally friendly compared to traditional techniques.
3D printed house: 3D Printed nurseries for COVID-19 – Suzhou, China
A technology company located in Suzhou’s city donated fifteen 3D-printed isolation wards to Hubei Xianning Central Hospital. The 3D printed wards, with shell structure, have an area of 10 square meters and a height of 2.8 meters. Thus, each of these units can accommodate two patients.
These units are built with new composite concrete, recycled from the construction waste, solid industrial waste comes from urban demolition. Due to the properties of the material, the 3D printed wings have considerable strength, wind, earthquake resistance, and total insulation.
According to the company, a ten-meters square isolation wing printed in 3D has a production time of 2 hours on a 3D printer under normal circumstances. With all support facilities for water, electricity, and the bathroom subsequently completed, an entire 3D printing wing can be delivered in 2-3 days, which considerably reduces the total cost.
3D Printed houses: why not buildings? Amsterdam, Netherlands
A project in Amsterdam, the creation of a building, is called 3D Print Canal House is using a printer adapted to lift a house on the banks of one of the Dutch capital’s canals. According to the project’s innovative coordinators, it is both a public exhibition, research, and experiment. The material used for printing the house is built using 80% biological material, making the house a “green” construction. The printer was named KamerMaker (room maker, in a free translation). It was adapted by Ultimaker so that it could build large structures. The Dutch architectural firm responsible for the project is called Dus. “We bought a container over the internet and transformed it into one of the biggest 3D printers on the planet”, says Hans Vermeule, co-founder of Dus, in the video of the project
The site works with a display. To watch the printer working, people need to pay 2.50 euros. The money is donated to the project.
According to the team, the building should be ready in three years. When completed, it will be used as a design museum.
3D Printed houses: Made of Hemp – Australia
A Dutch city will host the world’s first 3D printed houses of hemp fiber in 2019, a high-tech green building revolution that could transform residential and commercial buildings. Positioning itself at the forefront of Australia’s growing hemp industry, the Biotechnology company Mirreco has developed innovative hemp panels for buildings that can be 3D printed on floors, walls, and roofs.
Hemp is a fast-growing plant capable of absorbing large amounts of carbon dioxide, making it a particularly efficient and environmentally friendly building material. The panels are structurally solid, easy to produce, and offer thermal performance superior to traditional building materials, says the company. The video shows the mechanized hemp harvest.
While hemp is used in a wide range of applications, from textiles to food, the Australian company works on a process that uses hemp biomass to build residential homes. Having already developed a machine to process this plant material, removing the most useful components, such as fibers and seeds, the next step is to integrate hemp processing with 3D printing technology to manufacture building panels for homes. The company recently launched the concept of a sustainable hemp home, designed by the architectural firm Arcforms to show the potential of hemp biomass in the construction sector. “The floor, the walls, and the roof will all be made with hemp biomass, and the windows will join cutting-edge technology that allows light to pass through the glass where it is converted into electricity,” said Mirreco.
These hemp houses are not the first example of 3D printing technology used to build houses. There are several 3D printed houses and other construction projects that have sprung up around the world. However, Mirreco’s use of hemp plant biomass presents a new path for incredibly sustainable and efficient buildings.
3D Printed houses: Going to emerging countries – Brazil
This innovative tendency is also going to South American countries like Brazil.
Like several developments around the world, a Brazilian company sees the printing of low-cost 3D houses as an interesting alternative to the housing problem that affects several countries. The startup InovaHouse3D seeks to make additive manufacturing feasible for the industry, especially civil construction. Currently, InovaHouse3D’s challenge is to develop a 3D printer capable of printing an entire wall with micro-manufacturing concrete. Today, the machine that the startup has can print elements of decoration and urbanization, being able to act in civil construction in architectural elements of fencing, such as facades. For the development process, the company relies on the Autodesk Inventor platform, a software that allows the creation of three-dimensional virtual prototypes that work as in the real world. The company’s 3D printing process uses FDM technology. The startup does the project it intends to print in the project software.
InovaHouse3D has no estimate of how much it would cost to build a unit of this house printed in 3D and says it intends to disclose value when the first house has been built. However, it indicates that the technology already has the potential to be 20% cheaper than traditional residential construction in ceramic blocks, and may even reduce 40% in the medium term.
While the long-term objective remains distant, InovaHouse3D has used the expertise of its multidisciplinary team, with expertise in electrical, civil, mechanical, and chemical engineering, to print design and decoration pieces, which is where the current demand is.
The company sees financial competitiveness and the security of these buildings as major challenges for companies in this field. Even though they are in the primary situation compared to projects going by European and North American countries, the startup seems to have good chances.
3D Printed houses: Furniture and Stuff
I know that you’re curious enough to ask yourself: “Okay, but what about the furniture? Relax, we separate some awsome examples too. Check it out!
3D printed homes: Furniture’s overview
Giant 3D printer for furniture
Lukas Oehmigen, a german artist, developed a giant 3D printer that can print objects larger than an armchair. With an aluminum structure, the piece is 1.18 meters high, 1.14 m wide, 1 m deep, weighs 200 kg, and costs US$ 39 thousand.
The 3D printer was named BigRep and can print objects on several kinds of plastics, and its creator had the thought to include a material that would not destroy nature. So, he used PLA, a biodegradable plastic derived from corn, and is more stable for this type of printing. To get an idea, it takes about $ 150 in plastic and five days to print a table on a large scale. Lukas’ company is focusing on using BigRep for furniture design and plans to invest in car and architecture projects. Cool, isn’t it?
Drawn is a French company that has developed a 3D printer called Galatéa specialized in the creation of personalized furniture and decoration. After a successful Kickstarter campaign in 2015, he started making 3D-printed furniture: plastic stools, tables and chairs, and smaller decorative items like vases. The user can choose the color and shape of his furniture and, for example, watch the 3D printing live from his chair.
Risen from the waste
In the streets of Amsterdam, the coast of Thessaloniki, Greece, there is several 3D printed street furniture, such as benches. They were made thanks to the plastic waste of city dwellers. This waste was recycled and transformed into a 3D printing filament. An initiative that shows that 3D technologies have a significant role in environmental preservation and also it can create value in many sectors of activity.
Custom lamps with 3D printing
The owner of LPJacques studio Pierre-Yves Jacques took some years specializing in the use of additive manufacturing technologies for its projects. Lately, he announced his Di-Lamp project, lamps that are fully customizable by users, thanks to additive manufacturing technologies. You can choose the design style and color of the perfect lamp for your living room. And the studio also included several decorative elements that match its lamp.
Nagami and Zaha Hadid study chairs
At the last Milan Furniture Fair, the spanish design studio Nagami introduced its new chair collection last year. Four pretty futuristic chairs, printed in 3D from different materials. They follow a floral structure and are very colorful, and you can see it goes far beyond the simple kitchen furniture! This project demonstrates the possibilities offered by 3D technologies in the field of architecture and stools.
Puzzle pieces chairs
What about a puzzle chair for you and your family assemble it? This is an idea of 3D printed furniture created by the Bits & Parts community. The 3D model can be downloaded and printed for free at home on a 3D Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) desktop printer. There are three models available, the “Kids Maker Chair 19”, the “Maker Puzzle Chair” and the “Kids Maker Chair 39”. The last option, for example, contains 39 pieces weighing approximately 170 grams. You will need about 3.5 pounds of ABS filament of each color.
If you want to know specifically about building furniture by 3D Printing Process as well to understand the use of CAD on it, we invite you to read our blog post about Furniture Design.
As we see in these examples, the additive manufacturing process’s future brings many possibilities, such as 3D Printed homes. More and more, people and companies are thinking ways to do more with less waste of energy and supplies and beyond that, developing affordable products so everyone could benefit from it. Imagine how wonderful it is to have an alternative to build homes for poor communities reusing and recycling several kind of waste.
What about you? Do you consider live on a 3D Printed home in the future? Sounds pretty exciting, isn’t it?
Talking about CAD and SolidFace
These unique situations involving 3D Printed homes mostly involved the 3D modeling process, provided by some CAD software. Many students or professional designers are searching for intuitive solutions for their projects. That’s when SolidFace comes in.
SolidFace 3D CAD is different and better form the others. It is a FREE 3D modeling software with many features for you to start developing simple or complex projects. You can count on a large part and component library, teamwork collaboration space, intuitive interface to deal with complex assemblies. You can also count on free tutorials and free updates.So we truly believe SolidFace 3D is one good option, even if you are an entry-level designer or skilled engineer. Imagine how wonderful it is to build your person 3D printed house!
If you like this post, check out our blog page. There is a lot of good content about the 3D Printing Universe: Cars, Robots, and more. Just click here!