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World's First 3-D Printed Building
May 28, 2016

3-D printing technology promises to revolutionize architecture in the near-future, allowing designers to literally click-and-print complex buildings at a lower cost and faster speed than traditional construction methods allow. Another step forward in the field comes from Dubai, where what's hailed as the world's first 3-D-printed office was recently completed.

  • Taking up a footprint of 250 square metre, the building is located within Dubai's Emirates Towers complex and will serve as a fully-functional office.

  • A very large 3-D printer measuring 20 x 120 x 40 feet did most of the work, printing the building by extruding a cement mixture layer by layer. There were also some additional smaller mobile 3-D-printers used too.

  • It took 17 days to print the basic building, but it then required finishing both internally and externally. 

  • The building was printed in sections elsewhere before being assembled over two days on-site.

  • Dubai government says that the labour cost came in at half of what it would be for a building of similar size made using traditional methods.

  • The workforce included a single staff member monitoring the printer's progress, seven people to install the building components, and 10 electricians and other specialists to handle more technical issues, such as installing the building's electrical systems, for example.

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