The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has announced the building of a fully 3D-printed office building, replete with 3D-printed furniture, and housing a 3D printing exhibit dubbed "The Museum of the Future." Unlike previously touted 3-D printed buildings, this office structure purports to be the full-metal-jacket of 3D print jobs, from the exterior walls, to the interior walls, to all the furniture.
The audacious project was announced by the country's National Innovation Committee and Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice-President, Prime Minister, and ruler of the UAE.
A 20-foot-tall 3D printer will be set up on site in Dubai's city center and used to construct the 2,000-square-foot building. The materials to be used include Special Reinforced Concrete (SRC), Fiber Reinforced Plastic (FRP), and Glass Fiber Reinforced Gypsum (GRG).
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According to a press release from the Museum of the Future, construction will only take a few weeks using 3D printing and labor costs will be reduced by 50-80% while construction waste will be reduced between 30-60%.
The project will be led by WinSun Global, which previously 3-D printed an apartment building and home in China. Joining them on the project are leading engineering and architecture firms Gensler,Thornton Thomasetti, and Syska Hennessy.
This development is yet another example of the UAE's desire to transform itself from an oil dependent economy to one that is a leader in technology, architecture and design. Whether it will be enough to attract foreign business to the Middle East, however, remains to be seen.
“This building will be a testimony to the efficiency and creativity of 3D printing technology, which we believe will play a major role in reshaping construction and design sectors," H.E Excellency Mohammed Al Gergawi, UAE Minister Of Cabinet Affairs and Chairman of UAE National Innovation Committee, said in a press statement. "We aim to take advantage of this growth by becoming a global hub for innovation and 3D printing. This is the first step of many more to come.”
What do you think of large-scale 3D printing projects like this? Share your thoughts in the comments.
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A regular speaker on the tech conference circuit and a Senior Director at FTI Consulting, Sylvie Barak is an authority on the electronics space, social media in a b2b context, digital content creation and distribution. She has a passion for gadgets, electronics, and science fiction.