3D printing techniques Will Be Used To Construct Buildings, Here And In Outer Space

Lucas Mearian | Computerworld | September 18, 2013

'Contour Crafting' can be used to build the shell of a 2,000 square foot house in less than 20 hours

Within a couple of years, researchers at the University of Southern California believe 3D printing techniques will be used to construct entire buildings in less than a day.

As outrageous as it sounds, such machines can already extrude concrete walls with internal reinforcement fast enough to complete the shell of a 2,000-sq. ft. house in under 20 hours.

The technology was demonstrated this week at the Inside 3D Printing Conference and Expo here.

The robotic extruding method, called Contour Crafting, is comparable to its smaller 3D desktop printer counterparts in that it takes its orders from CAD software, which stores and executes the architectural designs. The designs can be customized on a construction site even as work is underway.