Composites are helping architects to make highly unusual curved and freeform shapes in large buildings in the Middle East, such as the Sidra Hospital under construction in Qatar on the Arabian peninsula. Roofing panels up to 15m to 25m (49 ft to 82 ft) long have been made with the material. (Source: Affan Innovative Structures)
3D printed buildings are already being tried, as both you and I have covered: http://www.ubmfuturecities.com/author.asp?section_id=262&doc_id=523906 http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1392&doc_id=250614 Meanwhile, composites are also being designed for 3D printing uses in aerospace: http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1392&doc_id=248401 So--when will the two combine?
That is an understatement. I prefer the wineries on the actual peninsula. Traverse City proper is just.. pleasant. Perhaps someday, 3D printing could reproduce the old style architecture... Just a thought.
I could see 3D printing becoming the premier way to build structures. I mean... brick laying is a perfect example. An industry perfect for a huge printer, using individual bricks as the media. I read of a brick printer that would build streets, in the Netherlands. It's going to happen.
I agree, Cabe, and thanks for that link. What a perfect app! It reminds me of the one NASA plans on using to print roadways and landing pads as well as structures on the Moon:http://www.designnews.com/author.asp?section_id=1392&doc_id=250614 One thing that's so cool about these building-scale 3D printing machines is the fact that they're designed to use materials other than plastic, often traditional building materials like cement and brick. The possibilities are huge.
A tiny humanoid robot has safely piloted a small plane all the way from cold start to takeoff, landing and coming to a full stop on the plane's designated runway. Yes, it happened in a pilot training simulation -- but the research team isn't far away from doing it in the real world.
Some in the US have welcomed 3D printing for boosting local economies and bringing some offshored manufacturing back onshore. Meanwhile, China is wielding its power of numbers, and its very different relationships between government, education, and industry, to kickstart a homegrown industry.
You can find out practically everything you need to know about engineering plastics as alternatives to other materials at the 2014 IAPD Plastics Expo. Admission is free for engineers, designers, specifiers, and OEMs, as well as students and faculty.
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