3D printer to carve out world's first full-size building

A Dutch architect sets to work creating a two-story "Landscape House" built entirely from a 3D printer.

A rendering of the "Landscape House" by architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars. Universe Architecture

Sure, we've heard of 3D-printed iPhone cases , dinosaur bones , and even a human fetus -- but something massive, like a building?

This is exactly what architect Janjaap Ruijssenaars has been working on. The Dutch native is planning to build what he calls a "Landscape House." This structure is two-stories and is laid out in a figure-eight shape. The idea is that this form can borrow from nature and also seamlessly fit into the outside world.

Ruijssenaars describes it on his Web site as "one surface folded in an endless mobius band," where "floors transform into ceilings, inside into outside."

The production of the building will be done on a 3D printer called the D-Shape, which was invented by Enrico Dini. The D-Shape uses a stereolithography printing process with sand and a binding agent -- letting builders create structures that are supposedly as strong as concrete.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the printer will lay down thousands of layers of sand to create 20 by 30-foot sections. These blocks will then be used to compile the building.

The "Landscape House" will be the first 3D-printed building and is estimated to cost between $5 million and $6 million, according to the BBC. Ruijssenaars plans to have it done sometime in 2014.

About the author

Dara Kerr, a freelance journalist based in the Bay Area, is fascinated by robots, supercomputers and Internet memes. When not writing about technology and modernity, she likes to travel to far-off countries.

 

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