The University of Southern California is testing a giant 3D printer that could be used to build a whole house in under 24 hours.
Professor Behrokh Khoshnevis has designed the giant robot that replaces construction workers with a nozzle on a gantry, this squirts out concrete and can quickly build a home according to a computer pattern. It is “basically scaling up 3D printing to the scale of building,” says Khoshnevis. The technology, known as Contour Crafting, could revolutionise the construction industry.
The affordable home?
Contour Crafting could slash the cost of home-owning, making it possible for millions of displaced people to get on the property ladder. It could even be used in disaster relief areas to build emergency and replacement housing. For example, after an event such as Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, which has displaced almost 600,000 people, Contour Crafting could be used to build replacement homes quickly.
It could be used to create high-quality shelter for people currently living in desperate conditions. “At the dawn of the 21st century [slums] are the condition of shelter for nearly one billion people in our world,” says Khoshnevis, “These buildings are breeding grounds for disease a problem of conventional construction which is slow, labour intensive and inefficient.”
As Khoshnevis points out, if you look around you pretty much everything is made automatically these days – “your shoes, your clothes, home appliances, your car. The only thing that is still built by hand are these buildings
The effects of the devastating earthquake that hit Haiti in 2010 are still affecting the work of aid groups and health care workers, but they’re now getting some help from an unconventional source: 3D printers.
A project called iLab Haiti, which is an initiative of Kid Mob, has
brought several MakerBot 3D printers to Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and is using them to produce prototypes of certain basic medical supplies, such as umbilical cord clamps, on demand.
iLab Haiti, based at the Haiti Communitere facility, is currently using ABS plastic to print the devices, and while they aren’t quite a finished product yet, it’s hoped that further iterations will bring the devices up to medical standards.
In an interview with NPR, Ashley Dara from iLab Haiti gives some background to the project:
… while I was in Haiti last year, a dear friend of mine was running a hospital all by herself with limited resources. One night she wound up having to deliver five babies and they had no umbilical cord clamps, so they were using their own rubber gloves, cutting them to tie off the umbilical cords, which meant that they went through their rubber gloves and had to then deliver babies barehanded with women that were HIV-positive.
And all I could think was, wow, if we had a 3-D printer, I could’ve been printing on-demand umbilical cord clamps for you.” – Dara
iLab Haiti is said to be looking for additional collaborators for their project, such as working with companies that have the technology to take recycled everyday plastics and turn them into useable 3D printer filament. The team hopes to be able to teach some locals how to model 3D objects and to repair the machines, which will give them further tools to come up with creative solutions to their pressing local problems
3D scanning and printing integral in creation of this interactive museum exhibit. Museum visitors were able to physically handle exact reproductions of bronze sculptures and their reactions were even recorded by researchers at Johns Hopkins.
Entering the exhibition “Between Heaven & Earth: Birds In Ancient Egypt” at the Oriental Institute Museum, University of Chicago, you will immediately feel transported into the ancient Nile delta marshlands with its lush green flora.
The combination of colours, video footage, bird song and ancient artefacts gives the impression of travel through time and space. At the start of the exhibition, you will find one of their most impressive artefacts, an empty shell of an ostrich egg from 3100 BC. Ostrich eggs have not only been used in ancient Egypt as containers for liquids and raw material for bead carving, but also symbolize the deep integration of avian life into ancient Egypt’s spirituality. All life is at times described as entering and leaving the world through the egg as a vessel, and that birds are messengers that can travel between the realms of men and their gods. Many of the Egyptian gods are portrayed as birds, and even their people have been symbolized by different bird species.
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