Follow Us

We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message

Amsterdam architects start printing a 3D canal house

The house should be finished within 3 years

Article comments

Amsterdam firm DUS architects started printing the first building blocks of a 3D-printed canal house Friday.

In order to do that, the architects bought a shipping container and with the help of 3D-printer maker Ultimaker they converted it into a huge version of a desktop 3D printer. That larger-than-life 3D printer sits on a vacant lot beside a canal in the northern part of Amsterdam. If everything goes well, it will be the home of the first printed canal house within the next three years.

The plan is for the front of the house to measure 15 meters high, 6 meters wide and 6 meters deep, while adding a back to the house of the same size if possible within the same time frame.

Related Articles on Techworld

The container-sized printer is called KamerMaker, which is Dutch for "room builder." It uses bioplastic pellets of a material called Macromelt that is based on rapeseed oil. It was developed by Henkel, a company based in Düsseldorf, Germany, that manufactures adhesives for the electronics industry, said Hedwig Heinsman, co-founder of DUS architects. Macromelt can easily be shredded and reused when a piece doesn't come out the right way, she said.

That is convenient because the first blocks probably won't make it to the house, said Hans Vermeulen, one of the other co-founders. The first blocks are meant to be test pieces to learn where the faults in the construction of the blocks are, he said.

A 3-meter high block currently takes about a week to complete. "Eventually, we would like to be able to finish one within two hours," said Vermeulen.

The 3-meter high block being printed Friday indeed showed errors when it was only a couple of centimeters high. The printer did not always manage to spread the Macromelt evenly, making some of the ribs of the honeycomb structure of the block uneven. Those errors eventually will be straightened out in a printed block and don't really affect the strength of the structure, according to Vermeulen.

"Maybe in three years we will have printed the house four times, upgrading the house based on the gained knowledge," he said, adding that printing a house is still a process of trial and error.

DUS architects is planning to finish the first of 13 planned rooms this summer. Meanwhile, the site will remain open to the public during the building process and those interested can take a look around for €2.50 (US$3.45).

Loek is Amsterdam Correspondent and covers online privacy, intellectual property, open-source and online payment issues for the IDG News Service. Follow him on Twitter at @loekessers or email tips and comments to loek_essers@idg.com



Share:

More from Techworld

More relevant IT news

Comments



Send to a friend

Email this article to a friend or colleague:

PLEASE NOTE: Your name is used only to let the recipient know who sent the story, and in case of transmission error. Both your name and the recipient's name and address will not be used for any other purpose.

Techworld White Papers

Choose – and Choose Wisely – the Right MSP for Your SMB

End users need a technology partner that provides transparency, enables productivity, delivers...

Download Whitepaper

10 Effective Habits of Indispensable IT Departments

It’s no secret that responsibilities are growing while budgets continue to shrink. Download this...

Download Whitepaper

Gartner Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Information Archiving

Enterprise information archiving is contributing to organisational needs for e-discovery and...

Download Whitepaper

Advancing the state of virtualised backups

Dell Software’s vRanger is a veteran of the virtualisation specific backup market. It was the...

Download Whitepaper

Techworld UK - Technology - Business

Innovation, productivity, agility and profit

Watch this on demand webinar which explores IT innovation, managed print services and business agility.

Techworld Mobile Site

Access Techworld's content on the move

Get the latest news, product reviews and downloads on your mobile device with Techworld's mobile site.

Find out more...

From Wow to How : Making mobile and cloud work for you

On demand Biztech Briefing - Learn how to effectively deliver mobile work styles and cloud services together.

Watch now...

Site Map

* *