Friday, April 15, 2016

3D Printed Architecture

By: Stephen Lauer

            The Canal House is one building that is currently being designed and built is in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, by DUS Architects is completely 3D printed. DUS Architects are working on a series of houses called “Canal Houses” which all will be 3D printed when they are completed. They have designed the house to be printed in 13 separate pieces and then assembled. Each component is a room of the house and when put together, it becomes a fully functional house. The figure below shows each component of the house. Each component is a room of the house and explained by the figure: entry space (1), toilet (2), study (3), living room (4), dining room (5), kitchen (6), office (7), meeting (8), bedroom (9), mini kitchen (10), guest bedroom (11), bathroom (12), and a small “garden” room (13).[1] This tall and slender design is programmed and designed this way because the buildings are a part of a larger master plan to include multiple houses along the canal to house as many people as possible. Each space is also much smaller than the typical American house and also fits a lot of different programmed spaces into a relatively small amount of space. Currently the canal house is a research design project; DUS is using each programmed space to test out new methods and materials. They currently do not have a built house but instead are using each new prototype as a “museum” of their work to show off each new method and material. The issue with printing a building in this way (printing each room as a piece) is that it restricts the sizes of each room and thus limiting the overall size of the building but it does work very well for smaller homes and structures. 3D printed structures are becoming a reality due to advancements in recent technology and are pushing our industry to build new things using this technology. This also allows us to build certain things much easier than current methods and allows us to do things that would otherwise be impossible with conventional methods.

[1] Backer, T. (2015, September 23). DUS Architects Canal House [E-mail interview].

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