Some few months ago I had an appointment with Moi University Radio station (MU FM) to discuss 3D printing. Even though I had some commitment and failed to attend the interview, the 3D PRINTING IDEA (an idea that is still new to many) drew my interest. The result of my curiosity proved terrific and eye opening to where the world is HEADING, in all dimensions of life.
3D printing, or rather Additive manufacturing, the very idea of one Chuck Hull was founded in 1984. And ever since, the world’s technologies that is aligned to presentation and visualization have been changed a great deal. The technology has been used in offices and homes for creating models, and recently, the Construction industry.
The idea of printing 10 housing units within 24 hours leaves one wondering how this is even possible.
This fete is no longer a dream.
Thanks to WinSun Decoration Design Engineering Co., that used a massive 490-foot-long, 33-foot-wide, and 20-foot-deep 3D printer to print cheap concrete.
The various structural components can be fabricated either on site or off-site then joined together with the highest level of accuracy. Currently Winsun’s approach is the most efficient. Time will tell if it will stand the test.
The question then becomes. Can we scale down a building, and model it with a material/ material whose engineering properties are similar to those of the building to be erected? And if so, subject it to simulated forces and characteristic loads that are to be expected in that given environment?
For example, in a wind tunnel test, simulated earthquake loads, and if necessary internal loads? If the building then meets its structural integrity, then it can simply be called a structural analysis and design by experimental verification method.
Or something of that sort.
That’s my thought.
3D printing in construction has been tested, and proven an economic and time efficient method of construction, and should be adopted in engineering faculties in Africa and the world over to prepare future engineers for this technology in industry.
This is just a shift from classical methods of construction into the modern futuristic era, where time, structural integrity and cost are becoming a must have for every construction project.