Scientists build 3D-printed structures from the soil. This new eco-friendly innovation can revolutionize the sector by potentially replace concrete buildings.
Pretty soon, we'll all be living in 3D-printed houses. What else will be 3D printed in the future? https://t.co/lGlW1z7avn pic.twitter.com/cWqYQbHKeA — shekhar biswas (@shekharbiswas) August 15, 2020
Experts claimed that the new method they have developed could improve the construction industry using local soil that can be used to 3D-print environment-friendly buildings. The innovation was designed to be a sustainable alternative to concrete, which is responsible for approximately 7% of carbon dioxide emissions.
Building 3D-printed structures that meet existing building protocols and regulations is still a challenge for most architects and engineers. However, Sarbajit Banerjee, a professor of chemistry and materials science and engineering at Texas A&M University, claimed that the method's versatility still allowed them to print entire architectural facades.
Currently, most of the buildings and other structures' primary materials are concrete, which can't be recycled and needs a lot of energy to mix and transport to other locations. The researchers plan to resolve this issue by using the type of soil usually found in any garden.
"While the widespread use of concrete has democratized access to housing and enabled the growth of cities, this has come at a considerable environmental cost," said Banerjee.
How the new method will solve the problem of concrete structures
The scientists said that the 3D-printing method could weaken the current issue of concrete buildings. They also see a new type of construction that relies on naturally sourced materials.
Could this be the #future of #building? A 3D-printed #house is presented in #Prague @martin_divisek / epa#epaphotos #Prvok #architecture #photojournalism pic.twitter.com/2i4esgClhJ — Alex Ehlers (@ohne_ander) August 18, 2020
By using natural materials, experts can design and build structures that can adapt to local climates' needs and not just serve as cookie-cutter houses. The new eco-friendly tech can also provide dignified shelters to the neediest people across the globe.
It can also reduce the need to transfer concrete materials in long distances, further lessening the buildings' environmental effect. Banerjee said that the research team is currently progressing in improving the soil's load-bearing capabilities.
He also said that they are also planning to use the method to build structures on other planets, once they have a better idea of the new technology's limits.
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Written by: Giuliano de Leon.