3D Printing – Disruption in Construction Industry

Sustainability Problem: Construction Waste

Construction wastes have become a pressing issue in many developing countries and have adverse effects on environment, economy and social aspects. Illegal dumping is a common issue created from the physical construction waste and besides that non physical waste like cost and time overruns are not properly addressed among the construction players.


3D printing (additive printing or additive manufacturing) is a production technique for creating solid objects from a digital file uploaded to a 3D printer. The printer reads the file and lays down successive layers of materials, such as plastics, resins, concrete, sand or metals, until the entire object is created. Like an inkjet printer, a 3D printer has containers of a raw material, often plastic based, that it extrudes in a precise pattern to lay down layers.

  • Extremely large 3D printers have already been built that can use concrete-like materials to fabricate a variety of large structural components and even entire buildings, such as emergency huts and residences.
  • Most printers can only extrude one type of material at a time, but more advanced printers have been built that can extrude multiple materials, providing a level of speed and flexibility that was not present before. Components can be printed offsite and shipped to the jobsite where they will be erected with steel reinforcement. Alternatively, the printer can be transported to a jobsite to fabricate on demand.
  • Benefits of 3D printing include: reduced materials usage, increasing the ability to design a larger variety of customized homes and buildings, savings of 30%-60% in construction waste, reduction of production time by 50%-70%, reduction of construction labor costs by 50%-80%
  • Currently, the types of materials available for use in these printers are rather limited. In addition, many printers may be limited to a single type of material. Additionally, transporting printers to and from site could be problematic as could safe onsite printer storage.

Stakeholders: City civil and construction authorities, builders, contractors, labor,  companies manufacturing 3D printers, architects, etc.

Deployment: Before the commercial operation:

  • Test 3Printer for on-site small construction jobs
  • Engage architects, designers, builders and contractors and addressing forth coming issues and opportunities
  • Civil and construction authorities to lay building codes and guidelines
  • Address reduction in labor issues

Source: https://disruptionhub.com/%E2%80%8Bhow-3d-printing-will-disrupt-construction-business/ and https://www.whirlwindsteel.com/blog/impacts-of-3d-printing-on-the-construction-industry

Comment on other blog: https://makeasmartcity.com/2017/10/26/solarwindow-a-window-for-a-bright-future/comment-page-1/#comment-1292



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