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.
How can automakers, aerospace contractors, and other OEMs get new metal alloys that are stronger, harder, and can survive ever higher temperatures? One way is to redesign their crystalline structures at the nanoscale and microscale.
Although a lot of the excitement about 3D printing and additive manufacturing surrounds its ability to make end-products and functional prototypes, some often ignored applications are the big improvements that can come by using it for tooling, jigs, and fixtures.
A fun and informative tour you can attend at the upcoming Design & Manufacturing Minneapolis, MD&M Minneapolis, and other events there, is the Materials Innovation Tour on Wednesday afternoon. I'll be leading it.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies.
You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived.
So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.